Align Technology, Inc. Announces Updates to Invisalign(R) Proficiency Requirements

Here is the latest press release from Align.

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Sept. 30, 2009 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Align Technology, Inc. (Nasdaq: ALGN) today announced updates to the Invisalign Proficiency Requirements, including a new designation for doctors who meet the annual requirements and an additional qualification period in 2010. The Invisalign Proficiency Requirements were launched June 1 to help ensure a baseline of Invisalign product experience and knowledge through minimum annual case and continuing education (CE) goals. To maintain active provider status, doctors must achieve at least ten shipped cases and ten hours of Invisalign-specific CE each year.

"We're only four months into the program and I'm very pleased with the progress we've seen to date -- key metrics, including Invisalign CE course participation, are up significantly and doctors are working with their Invisalign representatives to meet or surpass the minimum case and CE requirements by year-end," said Dan Ellis, Align's vice president, North American sales. "We want to do everything we can to help doctors achieve success, whether it's recognizing their commitment to Invisalign proficiency, or by helping increase their confidence in Invisalign products and treatment with new and improved features."

As part of the Invisalign Proficiency Requirements, Align has developed new ways to support doctors through this significant change, including a program to recognize doctors who achieve the annual proficiency requirements by year end. Doctors who meet the proficiency requirements of ten shipped cases and ten Invisalign CE hours by the end of 2009 will benefit from a new addition to Align's consumer marketing programs, one that encourages prospective patients to seek out "Invisalign Preferred Providers." Starting in January 2010, this new Invisalign Preferred designation will be highlighted on the Invisalign web site and in television ads as a way to recognize doctors' commitment to continued proficiency with Invisalign. The Invisalign Preferred designation will then be awarded on an annual basis to doctors who meet the proficiency requirements for a given year.

For doctors who are unable to meet the proficiency requirements this year, but demonstrate a desire to continue using Invisalign, Align will offer a one-time, additional six month qualification period that will enable doctors to secure their Invisalign provider status for 2010. Many of these doctors lack confidence with certain Invisalign techniques or with how widely Invisalign can be used in their practices. Recently-announced new and improved features in all Invisalign products may give doctors greater confidence in Invisalign and address perceived limitations of Invisalign treatment, especially among doctors who have not used the product extensively in recent years. The new features, which will be available in mid-October, are designed to deliver better results across more clinical situations, particularly with extrusions, rotations, and root movements. The additional six month qualification period will give doctors an opportunity to realize the value of these product improvements.

The additional six month qualification period stipulates that:
- Doctors who do not meet the proficiency requirements for 2009 but
have at least one shipped case and at least one Invisalign CE hour
at the end of this year will be allowed to maintain their active
provider status through June 30, 2010.
- Doctors who qualify for the additional six month qualification
period can secure their provider status for the second half of 2010
by meeting half of the annual proficiency requirements (at least
five shipped cases and five Invisalign CE hours) between January 1
and June 30, 2010.
- Doctors will still be responsible for meeting the total annual
requirements of at least ten shipped cases and ten Invisalign CE
hours by the end of 2010 to qualify as providers for the following

Doctors with zero shipped cases or zero Invisalign CE hours at the end of 2009 will not be eligible for the additional qualification period. They will be able to continue treating in-progress cases but will not be able to submit new Invisalign cases or use Invisalign branding or marketing resources.

Align does not expect the Invisalign Proficiency Requirements to have a material impact on the Company's fiscal year 2009 financial results. More information on the Invisalign Proficiency Program and the additional qualification period are available at

About Align Technology, Inc.


These new Invisalign requirements are going to make a lot of dentists upset. Invisalign has to be careful because there is a new competitor on the block, ClearCorrect.

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