Remember When “Delta” was an Insurance Company?
By: Dr. Patrick Prendergast
No matter where you get your news today, the
world continues to deliver a message that seems to
leave us more confused and uncertain by the day.
Clearly, COVID-19 isn’t done with us yet! And still amid
this cacophony of opinions, each of us have managed to
continue living our lives, caring for our families (both
personal and practice based), and making important
decisions as thoughtfully as possible each and every
day. For just a moment, please stop here, and simply
appreciate all that you have accomplished.
As summer draws to a close, we face challenges that
must be lived to be learned. What will education look
like for our children and grandchildren? When will
people come back into the workforce? How will we
learn to live with COVID-19 as a constant in our lives?
Why do we seem to be ready to fight one another? We
all answer these and hundreds of other questions with sentences that
contain the same word…hope. We hope the kids can learn in-person; we
hope to find team members for our offices; we hope that COVID-19 will
become as normal in conversation and prevention as the flu; we hope our
country can heal the wounds that separate us needlessly.
Hope is essential for much of what we do as humans.
I bring this up to make an enormous ask of each of us. We have a unique
opportunity in this dental space where we live. No matter what your role,
no matter how busy the practice might be… dental peeps remain dental
peeps because of the human interaction our profession gives each of
us. We provide care to all types of people in many different settings. We
come to know them on different levels and because of this, we trade a bit
of our story for theirs. This presents a unique opportunity.
As one of the silver, slight-haired group of dentists still practicing, I am
as guilty as anyone of being disappointed by these current conditions
and wondering how or by whom they will be corrected. Of course,
wondering has never solved anything. Have you noticed how a problem
in life just keeps presenting itself until we finally take
steps to address the issue? Often growing larger and
more complex with each iteration?
If this makes any sense to you, you already understand
our current problems and essentially all others are
never solved from the top down, the solutions come
from the bottom up. This is where we have, perhaps,
our biggest opportunity. Our dental space provides
us the setting to make someone smile, laugh, share,
and feel a bit more appreciated and connected to one
another. Could such a simple action really make a
change in these bigger issues? If it were practiced by
hundreds or thousands of us, could it possibly begin to move the needle
toward a kinder world? Even if it doesn’t feel like it, has greater acceptance
and understanding ever caused any harm? What if we focused on
communicating better simply to enhance our own lives? What if we
remembered that communication is a two-way street combining both
speaking and, more importantly, listening?
I ask you to remember what great power you have each and every day,
in the office and out of it. You have the power to help solve the issues
that plague us, one small step at a time. I thank you for the honor to
be your MDDS President. We have a world-class team at MDDS who
stand ready to help each of us. Please commit to making the positive
change this wonderful, mixed-up world so desperately needs. Dentistry
is a powerful profession and I challenge each of you to use that power
Dr. Pat Prendergast grew up in the Sandhills of Nebraska, vacationing each summer in the land that would be his eventual home. After attending the University of Notre Dame, he completed his education at Creighton University, graduating with a DDS degree in 1982. He and his spouse Janie soon moved to Denver and began their private practice career. They have enjoyed the Rocky Mountain region in many ways while raising a family and making this area their home. They remain actively involved in constant education to improve their skills, many charities and their church. His practice of dentistry is governed by that simple concept of treating your patients as you would treat your family.
For his entire career, Dr. Prendergast has been a member of the local, state, and national dental societies. He has served the public by working on various committees, councils, special projects within those societies. His longest service was in the area of Public Relations/Peer Review, where he chaired the state level council for this important service to consumers. He has presented table clinics, demonstrations, and been a spokesperson for Biolase Technologies, teaching the use and incorporation of laser technology into dental practices in the Rocky Mountain region. He has participated in dental mission trips to Juarez, Mexico, and remains actively involved with many charities providing pro bono dental care to patients, including the Colorado Mission of Mercy, Foundation for Dentistry for the Handicapped, Stout Street Program, and Smile Again Program.
Dr. Prendergast remains committed to sharing his knowledge, talents, and resources with our community and world. His life away from dentistry centers on family, friends, fishing, learning, and traveling.