Alternative Career Paths in
Dentistry
What if I don’t want to own a business?
Eric Childs, DDS
Who Am I?
• General Dentist in
Coldwater, Mich.
• Private Practice owner
• Aspiring Marathoner
• Husband and Dad
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What have I done?
• High school teacher
• Associate dentist
• Dentist in a Federally Qualified Health
Center
• Private Practice owner
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#ASDAnet
Options…
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Residency programs
Research
Dental Education
Associateship
Indian Health Service
Public Health Service Commissioned
Corps
National Health Service Corps
@ASDAnet
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Residency Programs
• AEGD or GPR
– Most are tuition free with a stipend of varying
amounts
– Some require taking call and working weekends
– Many are in based in hospitals or clinics
• VA: http://www.va.gov/dental/residency.asp
– Can use Match or apply directly in some cases
– Some states use the residency year as a qualification
for a dental license
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Residency Programs
• Specialty Programs
– Vary in cost and time
– Many are competitive and require using the
Match service.
(http://www.natmatch.com/dentres/)
– Fewer positions available
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Dental Research
• Most commonly require an advanced degree in
addition to a dental degree
• Lab research
– Tied to grants at a university
– Expected to pull in monies for the university
• Clinical research
– Generally tied to university, but not as significant as
lab research
– Harder because typically the researchers have little or
no formal training
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• http://careers.dentalresearch.org/jobseek
er/search/results/
• http://www.nidcr.nih.gov/CareersAndTraini
ng/CareersinDentalResearch/
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Dental Education
• Job market is vast, but many positions
require a PhD or specialty degree
• Pay is low if not full time, and even when
full time
– Part-time pay is low
– Sometimes classified as “courtesy faculty”
– Difficult for a new dentist with low pay (one
source said $40,000/yr for new general dental
faculty)
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Dental Education
• Tenure Track
– A set amount of time to “prove” you are
significant to the university
– Publishing, research, academically
– Evaluated at end of time limit. If not
approved, can be terminated
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Dental Education
• Clinical Track
– Less demand on research
– Salary can be low
• Contractually agreed upon appointment
– Time spent in teaching, research, and service
– 60% teaching, 20% research, 10% private
practice for example
• Benefits provided vary widely
@ASDAnet
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Associateships
• Vary widely in pay, expectation,
opportunity, and structure
– Buy in/buy out
– Employee
• Production vs collection
• Salary
• Some work well, others do not
@ASDAnet
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Indian Health Service
• Federal health services for American
Indians and Native Alaskans
• Loan repayment up to $24,000 per year
for a two year commitment
– Only health professions loans
• http://www.ihs.gov/dentistry/
@ASDAnet
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Public Health Service Commissioned Corps
• Uniformed public service position
• Similar benefits to military personnel
• Two year commitment, possible loan
repayment
• GI Bill at termination of service
• http://www.usphs.gov/profession/dentist/
@ASDAnet
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National Health Service Corps
• Loan repayment program available
• Two year commitment at an approved
site—usually in shortage areas at FQHC
or other community clinics
• Awards depend on HPSA score
(healthcare professional shortage area)
• http://nhsc.hrsa.gov/
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Family Health Center
of Battle Creek
• FQHC
• Eligible for NHSC loan
repayment
• http://www.fhcbc.org/
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Other options
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Group practice
Corporate Dentistry
Hospital Dentistry
Humanitarian Dentistry
– http://www.who.int/employment/en/index.html
– http://www.medmissions.org/
– Many other opportunities
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Questions?
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Thank You!
@ASDAnet
#ASDAnet
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Alternative Careers in Dentistry - American Student Dental Association