Amarinder Singh, Founder & CEO, Clove Dental, in conversation with Shahid Akhter, ENN, discusses the fragmented dental industry in India and his approach to offer the best of services and to build a pan-India network of multi-specialty clinics
Please throw some light on the origin of Clove Dental and the idea behind it?
We have learned that 90 percent of the entire Indian population of 1.2 billion has some dental issue or the other that needs attention. However, only 10 percent of this group actively seeks dental care. The importance of oral healthcare for all age groups, including very young children, is critical. Consumers tend to visit the dentist only when they experience pain, and even then, they do so reluctantly. We are here to introduce pain-managed, standardised, high quality dental care and to stress the importance of preventive care for all age groups.
Clove is setting the benchmark for dental services by offering services across all dental specialties in convenient locations and at a competitive cost.
Branded healthcare is a new idea in India. How is it being accepted by the end users and customers?
India faces a growing need to fix its basic health concerns. The private sector has emerged as a vibrant force in India’s healthcare industry, lending it both national and international repute. The sector’s share in healthcare delivery is expected to increase from 66 per cent in 2005 to 81 per cent by 2015.
Dental care is one segment that has gained traction with the entry of a number of new players and a fresh injection of private capital. Dental care in India has typically been dispensed by conventional, stand-alone clinics, but now firms are trying to achieve economies of scale by establishing networks. The market opportunity in India is huge and incubating a fledgling dental chain that offers an attractive opportunity for early-stage investors.
How are you going to ensure quality in branded healthcare?
We offer affordable, convenient care in an ethical and transparent manner. We have over 145 dentists in our 40+ clinics, and nearly 60 percent of them have advanced degrees from the best dental colleges in the country. Our membership in the Royal Society of Medicine, UK, is another indicator of our emphasis on quality, ethics and transparency. We are the only Indian healthcare organisation to have been given a membership by this prestigious body.
Clove clinics adhere to the highest international standards for hygiene, as set by the Indian Dental Association and its American and European counterparts. Advanced dental equipment and state-of-the-art dental technology ensure that the well-being of our patients is never compromised.
“Dental technology is applied to save the teeth and hence our approach has become preventive rather than curative”
Quality audits are conducted on a regular basis to ensure that our standards are upheld every single day in every single clinic. Our clinics follow a strict protocol for the sterilisation of dental equipment.
Which are the cities you are in?What are the expansion plans for Clove Dental?
Clove has over 40 clinics in the Delhi NCR region and the Chandigarh Tri- City area. Clove Dental is building an infrastructure for dental care and raising awareness on the need for dental care and the services available. We aim to build a pan-India network of multi-specialty clinics and plan to have around 90 clinics in Delhi NCR and Punjab by the end of this fiscal year.
We are also very passionate about our community outreach initiatives, wherein we provide free dental checkups in schools, communities and underprivileged localities. We have two fully equipped mobile dental clinics that enable us to provide the same high standard of care that we offer in our bricks-and-mortar clinics.
What kind of specialised services can one expect at Clove Dental?
Aside from general services such as scaling, polishing, fillings and root canals, Clove Dental offers a wide range of specialised services for every member of the family. We can provide space maintainers for a child who has lost a tooth prematurely due to decay. (The space maintainer will hold the space until the permanent tooth comes in.) We can provide colored braces for a fashion-conscious teen. We can provide smile redesign and whitening treatments for the professional who is concerned about his or her appearance. And we can provide implants – one of the latest and most promising innovations – to replace the tooth of a senior who has lost one due to the aging process. Every dental specialty is well represented in our network: periodontists (for gum disease), endodontists (for root canals), prosthodontists (for tooth restoration and replacement), orthodontists (for braces and aligners), pediatric dentists (for children). We can also provide cosmetic dental treatments and even oral cancer detection.
Why should one choose Clove Dental?
Clove Dental offers the largest pool of trained oral care professionals in North India -150 well-qualified doctors on board. Our pain management is by way of The Wand – Single Tooth Anesthesia system from the U.S. It offers computer-guided technology that delivers anesthesia exactly where it’s needed, for a significant reduction in treatment-related pain.
We consistently provide high quality treatment in every single clinic by ensuring that we are using the latest technology and equipment. We keep our dentists trained in the latest advancements and the very highest standards for clinical hygiene. We offer convenience by keeping our clinics open from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm, even on Saturdays and Sundays.
We follow a strict sterilisation protocol that ensures that our patients are never exposed to harmful germs or bacteria. Our tools are cleansed, packaged and sterilised and then stored according to the highest standards.
“We are the only Indian healthcare organisation to have been given a membership by Royal Society of Medicine, UK”
Finally, we are affordable. Our pricing is competitive and transparent. There are never any hidden costs in the services we provide, and we always involve patients in decisions regarding their care so that they can choose the treatments that suit them and their wallets.