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Why It’s Time to Modernise Your System Software
No amount of schooling can fully prepare you for the ongoing challenges associated with managing a dental practice. The classroom teaches the essentials needed to become a dentist by honing in on big-picture subject matter like biochemistry, pharmacology, human anatomy and other core knowledge. But there is no textbook or how-to booklet for effective dental practice management. Success is largely a team effort, the members of which are hired staff and superior technology, such as practice management software. Each component has to do its job — and do it well — to perform well and deliver world-class patient care.
But if you’re currently operating legacy software, your team is set up for failure. If it’s been a while since you last upgraded your dental practice software — or worse, relying on the obsolete, manual methods of yesteryear — the time has come to modernise your systems software. Here, we’ll explore why. In short, state-of-the-art dental software can help your dental practice do not just more — but a lot more.
How has dental practice management software improved?
Over the past 50+ years, the needs and desires of the patient haven’t significantly changed. They’re still quite busy with their personal and professional lives, and seek to make appointments for checkups at times that are convenient for them and their hectic schedules. Additionally, since going to the dentist can be a stress-inducing experience for many — particularly young children — they continue to want the patient experience to be as painless, quick and enjoyable as possible. To varying degrees of success, dental professionals have long relied on dental software as a means toward greater efficiency so these desired ends can be achieved — and achieved consistently.
What has evolved are the capabilities of dental practice management software — and quite significantly. For example, through cloud-based technology, software that used to be installed on a single computer in a dental practcie is now accessible from any device with an internet connection. This game-changing technology allows for better collaboration between team members so they can seamlessly communicate with patients from anywhere — whether through email, direct message, texting or over the phone.
Another major enhancement is system integration. Previously, software was mostly unconnected, requiring users to switch back and forth between the platforms or applications they were using. Today, dental practice management software has become more integrated with other existing technologies that are essential to delivering high-quality oral care, technologies that have also advanced. These include digital radiography, 3D scanning, intraoral scanners, 3D printers and several other kinds of high-end equipment.
Perhaps the biggest breakthrough of all with contemporary practice management software is artificial intelligence paired with machine learning. Through these technologies, the systems themselves adapt and respond to the day-to-day needs and routines of the office by identifying trends in how they’re used, at what times and for which purposes. This allows a practice to run a more efficient operation that is unique to each individual office in terms of what it specifically needs to be productive relative to another one where the day-to-day looks different.
In short, dental practice management software has never been better positioned to ensure the patient experience is first class. And it’s made possible by helping professionals be more effective in their roles.
Key benefits found in modernising your dental software
Convenient appointment booking for the patient
With texting frequently being the interaction source of first resort, rather than calling, patients like the same push-key convenience when it comes to scheduling appointments. Appointment booking is just a keystroke away through dental practice management software. This allows them to book appointments at any time of the day, from any device and also do some of the preparatory work from home that they would otherwise do in the office (e.g. fill out registration forms, check in, update personal, insurance or payment information, etc.).
Seamless rescheduling and cancellations
An emergency meeting at your patient’s employer. After school football practice that escaped a high school student’s mind. A bout with a stubborn cold or nasty flu. These are all scenarios that can require having to cancel or reschedule, a task that’s never convenient given all the coordination and updating that it entails. Dental practice management helps to more easily manage cancellations and rescheduling so the system can be updated and the relevant people involved are informed — including the patient.
Billing and insurance claims management
With numerous insurers as well as several different forms of payment, keeping track of them all can be problematic for even the most organized office staff and recordkeeping methods. Software can help to maintain the financial particulars for each patient so nothing is misplaced and can be called up quickly.
Discover and learn more from data
Thanks to 2D and 3D charting conversion, you can glean more insight from all the data that your system holds and apply what you learn to the needs of your business. These tools can also help your practice recognise trends over time, make more information-rich reports and help you make sense of data that is too complex to draw conclusions from in raw form. You can apply this data to patient care.
As with health care as a whole, dentistry is highly regulated and requires extensive reporting to abide by compliance measures established by the government and oversight bodies, whether they’re in Australia (Dental Board of Australia), the United States (American Dental Association, Commission on Dental Accreditation) or other parts of the world. Dental practice software can help with the generation of reports that are required for governance purposes. It can also optimise your practice management through robust business intelligence reporting and formulate detailed treatment plan reports.
Bottom line: If you’re not leveraging the latest cloud-based practice management software, you’re missing out on an opportunity to take your business and patient care to the next level. Dental4Web can get you there. From Centaur Software, this highly robust cloud offering can give your organisation the boost it needs to experience a higher level of excellence in and out of the practice — for your staff and your patients. Contact us today to learn more about what D4Web and our other tech solutions can do for you.
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