Office expansion was inevitable for husband and wife dental team, doctors Shiraz Asif, DDS, and Ambereen Suhrwardy, DDS, whose practice, Anderson Lake Dental, over the past 12 years had outgrown their current location in Eden Prairie, Minnesota.
Staffing at the Anderson Lake Dental increased over the years from three to eleven team members to support their many patients and broad array of services which include comprehensive dentistry, to specialty care such as porcelain veneers, CEREC, dental implants, Zoom whitening, dermal filler, Botox, sedation and more. While staff and services increased, space in which to work and see patients limited their ability to serve more people in a timely manner.
In the fall of 2019, after the space next door to theirs became available, the decision was made: they purchased the space and committed to adding 1,000-sqare-feet to their existing 2,000- square-foot location. The doctors knew that if they wanted the buildout to be done right — to enable maximum production and minimal waste — without impact to their ongoing practice, they needed a partner with expertise in dental office design.
A Fix for Overcrowding
The doctors put together a buildout team comprised of an architect and contractors, and they hired Henry Schein to help with the overall design and workflow management.
“Our team discussed with both doctors, ways to grow and scale in the new space,” explained Will Weber, Henry Schein Equipment Sales Specialist. “The final buildout included the addition of three more operatories, new offices, a new sterilization center, and updates to the front office.”
“We had five functional operatories before the buildout and we needed to hire another dentist, but we just didn’t have the room,” said Dr. Suhrwardy. “When we met with the Henry Schein team they provided us with genuine advice based on what would work best for our practice.”
Construction began at the end of January 2020. The Henry Schein team was there from day one, advising on floor plans and taking into consideration all aspects of the business in order to maximize production and efficiency, and enhance the patient experience, including:
- Staff workflow
- Patient traffic
- Equipment space and code requirements
- Aesthetics for a calming, comfortable environment
More Than Just a Veneer
Doctors Asif and Suhrwardy looked at new cabinets, furniture, and equipment, and felt overwhelmed by the choices and prices. They met with their Henry Schein team at A-dec's showroom in Portland, Oregon and visited their manufacturing center, to see the cabinetry and equipment first-hand, and better envision styles and sizes relative to their actual space in Eden Prairie.
“There was a lot to consider,” said Dr. Suhrwardy. “We felt like kids in a candy store. Mr. Weber and his team understood our needs and helped us make decisions based on our current and long-term budgetary requirements. They helped with everything, from the types of chairs and cabinetry, to selecting tubing and lighting from a dental perspective, which contractors would never know about.” Mr. Weber took the doctors’ future needs into consideration as well, planning space and connections within the design for a later installation of their new 3D CBCT machine, alleviating additional renovations when the time comes.
The plan was to advance construction in phases enabling the day-to-day practice to remain open without interruption, while some construction occurred after hours. One of the biggest challenges in the process, according to Mr. Weber, was the installation of a new sterilization center, because they had to tear down the old one in order to fit the new one. “A functioning sterilization center is business critical,” explained Mr. Weber. “They couldn’t work without one, so we offered to bring in a temporary one.”
However, six weeks after construction began, the COVID-19 pandemic was in full swing. The office closed to patients — except for emergencies — for several weeks, allowing construction to continue, uninterrupted and finish weeks ahead of schedule.
The dental office was completely reconfigured, and redesigned with all new cabinetry, furniture, and state-of-the art dental equipment, including a centrally located sterilization center. Walls were knocked down and replaced with clear glass dividers, giving the practice a sleek, open feel. “We expanded the reception area and provided an office for the office manager as well as a consultation room, which we did not have before,” said Dr. Suhrwardy. “We more than doubled our storage space and made the break room large enough to comfortably seat all staff members.”
Many More Smiles to Go
The office re-opened after 10 weeks on June 1, 2020, with more patients, more room in which to treat them, more staff to help in their care, and more smiles all around. The grand opening which remains virtual on the website due to the pandemic, continues to attract visitors and bring in new patients.