Dental HMO announces new ownership, new leadership and a new focus on benefits and quality plans

Dec. 17, 2001
Preferred Dental Plan Inc., a Newport Beach dental HMO, was bought out of receivership by a Southern California dentist.

Preferred Dental Plan Inc., a Newport Beach dental HMO, was bought out of receivership by a Southern California dentist.

Dr. Amir Neshat purchased Preferred Dental Plan's Knox-Keene license as a health maintenance organization and the book of business, after State Regulators (Department of Managed Health Care) approved the transfer of license. As of Dec. 13, 2001, the company's name has been changed to Liberty Dental Plan of California to reflect its new identity and improved product offerings.

"We are excited about a fresh start and positioning our company as an HMO that anticipates and adopts to changing health care needs," said Neshat, who is now CEO of Liberty Dental.

Neshat added that a marketing campaign is in the process of being developed which focuses on the basics of a dental plan: good benefit structures and affordable premiums which will afford more small to mid-size employer groups to realize the benefits of offering dental benefits to their employees.

Liberty Dental Plan offers comprehensive dental benefits and access to a wide network of qualified dental professionals. "Members will benefit from a broad range of products to fit different needs and budgets," said Richard Herrera, director of operations. "Brokers will profit from competitive commissions and efficient administration."

Neshat added, "One of our primary objectives will be customer satisfaction. In addition, Liberty Dental Plan has adopted a new infrastructure, which includes an IT system conversion which will enable the organization to more efficiently manage member, dentist and broker information."

Free from the liability of its precursor and lead by a new management team, Liberty Dental Plan has emerged as a new player in the market. "The management team is experienced in the dental industry and brings many professional relationships to the table," said Neshat.

Neshat, who received his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from University of Southern California, is also chairman of Newport Coast Dental Inc., a dental management company with practices in Southern California.

Arash Aghakhani, D.D.S., MS, an equal shareholder of Liberty Dental Plan serves as chief dental officer and vice president of Quality Management. He is also vice president of Newport Coast Dental.

As director of operations, Herrera spearheads the provider network expansion efforts. Prior to Liberty Dental, Herrera spent more than eight years with a competing dental carrier. During his tenure in the industry, he has been involved in all aspects of dental plan operations and developed many contacts in the field.

Jason Park, Liberty Dental's director of Sales and Finance, spent more than 15 years in dental management industry on the east coast. He has also worked in various sales and marketing positions for west coast companies including Ingram Micro.

The company is currently widening its dental provider networks. The company relies on member surveys to enhance products and operations. Liberty Dental Plan will expand its products and services in response to the needs of the marketplace. Future goals on the company's agenda include extending coverage to other states, and adding vision plans to its product offering.

"Affordable care shouldn't mean limited service," said Neshat. "That philosophy is the foundation of all that we do."

Liberty Dental Plan of California is a licensed dental plan that provides dental benefits statewide to individuals and employer groups. More information on Liberty Dental Plan can be obtained at or (888) 703-6999.