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Initial look at DA salary survey

Aug. 25, 2010
Editor Kevin Henry gives readers a first glimpse into the results from the Dental Assisting Digest Salary Survey.
Editor’s Note: Please note that this is simply a first look at the answers that have been submitted so far in our 2010 salary survey. We still need you to take part in our six-question survey and let your voice be heard! You can click here and the survey should take less than three minutes to complete. We’ll post the final results in our September edition of DAD. Thanks in advance for your participation!Looking through the early results of the 2010 Dental Assisting Digest salary survey, it’s clear to see that while some things have changed, some things have definitely remained the same.Last year when we asked you for your hourly rate of pay as a dental assistant, the answer receiving the most votes was $18 per hour. So far in 2010, $18 is still the answer receiving the most votes. The optimist would look at this and say, “Despite the down economy, dental assistants around the country are still being paid what they were in 2009.” The pessimist would say, “Dental assistants are still being paid at the same levels as 2009.” I’ll let you decide which side you fall on.
Click here to see the chart largerPerhaps more interesting is the second most popular answer. Last year, $15 wasn’t far behind $18 in your answers. This year, $22 is the second-most popular answer, followed closely by $20. I take that as a very good trend, especially with the economy still not stable.In terms of raises, 59% of respondents said they have not received a raise within the last year, while 58% believe they don’t receive raises at fair intervals. Last year, the numbers were close to a 50-50 split, so there has been some movement there.
Click here to see the chart largerA couple of random comments posted so far by dental assistants ...
From Florida:
“To make the higher salaries you have to consider dental assisting a career, not just a job.”From Missouri: “I think with the economy raises have been slower to come, but I am comfortable and confident that when it's affordable to do so, we will get a raise!”From South Carolina: “I have been working for the same dentist for the last five years. So far he has never given me a raise. My fellow employees say they have not been given raises either for the past five years. If we ask the dentist, he blames it on the ‘economy.’”Yet, despite the questions from dental assistants about salary ranges, raises, and respect, respondents so far would overwhelmingly recommend dental assisting as a profession. More than three out of four respondents (76.1%) answered “yes” when they were asked, “Would you recommend dental assisting as a profession.” Thus far, only 15% have answered no, while the other 8.9% are unsure.
Click here to see the chart largerAgain, I ask you if you haven’t already to take this year’s survey, please do so by clicking here. We’ll post the final results in our September edition of DAD.