The most important tool dental offices rely on is practice management software. This technology streamlines your entire clinical and administrative processes. It's also well-documented how the boost to productivity and accessibility provided by PMS features enhances patient oral healthcare experiences.
So, why are some dental offices still clinging to clipboards of intake paperwork and spending hours manually calling in appointment reminders and follow-ups? Is the sound of a metal filing cabinet slamming shut truly that satisfying? Probably not. In fact, it may be misinformation about how cloud-based practice management software works that has deterred so many offices from modernizing their operations.
If you're one of those offices still behind the times, read on to learn how your preconceptions about management applications are all wrong and costing you productivity and revenue.
It's true that the larger your dental practice, especially if part of a DSO, the more advanced management tools you'll need to keep costs down. However, it might surprise you that smaller clinics and solo dentists also benefit from cloud-based PMS solutions.
The fact is that the smaller your operation, the more penny-smart you need to be. This is especially true when it comes to performance. If you only have one dentist, two hygienists, and two front desk/administrative staffers, it's vitally important that you maximize their productivity to prevent your schedule from falling into chaos. Practice management software like Adit helps automate time-consuming tasks that would normally gobble up time better spent on revenue-generating patient consults and procedures.
Instead of manually conducting intake when patients arrive, your front desk can have electronic forms sent out automatically through online booking. This means insurance verification, patient EHR, and onboarding takes place ahead of time, keeping lobby wait times to a minimum. Imagine how much productivity your office could reclaim when implementing an online calendar integration and switching to digital billing and payment features.
Another myth that needs busting is the claim that cloud-based PMS options aren't worth the cost or downtime it would take to implement. This is probably one of the easiest misconceptions to dispel because:
When you read about ransomware attacks holding hospitals' EHR hostage, the idea of putting your practice data in the cloud may seem unwise. The truth is that patient information lives behind a multi-layered security architecture with several defenses in place against attacks. Your office doesn't have the resources to monitor your data 24/7/365, but dental practice management companies do. They have entire teams dedicated to the safety of your data and often have multiple backups of your information to fall back on should a breach occur.
Offices that opt to host their servers on-site require stringent security standards, need an IT professional in-house, and could still lose everything if a natural disaster strikes. The cloud is safer for patient health information and employs strong end-user authentication processes. Plus, you can be sure your office is meeting the required data security requirements of HIPAA and GDPR.
Have you ever had to drive back to your office late in the evening after getting home because of a dental emergency? Wouldn't it have been nice to access your dental EHR from home? Practice mobility may be somewhat new, but it's quickly becoming essential for many dental offices. One could argue that this capability has made some more competitive.
And before you argue that it's only newly graduated dental students and startups focusing on this aspect of practice management, think again. According to a recent study, 80% of doctors who are 55 or older currently use a smartphone to complete their work, and half also rely on a tablet.
There's no good excuse for making a patient wait on emergency care because you had to drive back to your office. Cloud-based PMS solutions allow you to access patient records instantly, ensuring you provide oral healthcare treatments when needed most.
95% of Americans own a cell phone to communicate, book appointments, pay their bills, and consult with physicians. The myth that the public is resistant to using web-based features for their dental care needs is simply untrue. The COVID-19 pandemic underscored the vital nature of mobile and web-based access to services, including within the healthcare industry.
You might also be surprised that offering online payment features like Adit Pay can boost your cash flow significantly because patients appreciate having multiple ways to settle their accounts. This means enhanced revenue forecasting because you aren't waiting for paper checks to clear or counting on payments when patients come to their next visit to pay in-office.
One can also look at how much easier it is for your staff and patients to use an online scheduler synced to your system's internal calendar. Instead of taking a financial loss every time a patient cancels at the last minute or no-shows, they can click a link in a reminder text to reschedule ahead of time.
While it's true that many PMS solutions have similar features, they are most certainly not created equal. For many dental practices, there comes a time when their existing system simply can't keep up anymore because the vendor no longer supports your software version or has gone out of business. Or worse, it can't scale to keep up with growth.
There are also situations where what you believe is an all-in-one practice management software isn't. Maybe you invested in a solution that focuses on clinical tools like electronic charting and medical billing, but it doesn't offer any marketing management, data analytics, or an online scheduler. Next thing you know, you have four different programs, all siloed from one another, requiring custom integrations or handling data multiple times to complete a single task.
This is why it's essential to assess exactly what you want to accomplish with a PMS system and invest accordingly.
You've probably experienced an internet outage before, and your entire day came to a standstill till it was restored. These occurrences are inconvenient and devastating for dental practices and patients. However, server outages are few and far between for cloud-based practice management systems, typically delivering uptimes of 99.9%. Usually, any outages that occur are an issue with your Internet service provider, and those are also quite rare.
Companies that offer digital management solutions typically operate within a redundant infrastructure and frequently back up your data, so the chances of losing any of your data are minimal.
Sure, while more expensive, hosting on-site is a reliable option. Well, until your hardware and software become outdated. Then you're investing money into upgrades and new licensing keys for every user. You need a future-proof PMS option, but hosting your own network isn't the way to achieve this goal. It's costly, requires dedicated maintenance and security, and risks destruction if Mother Nature becomes wrathful.
Cloud-based computing takes much of this responsibility and cost off of your shoulders. It also adds a new level of flexibility that boosts production, centralizes communication, and promotes collaboration between your staff. All of which means improved ROI and increased revenue.
Cloud computing has revolutionized every industry known to man, especially dentistry. If you haven't explored the latest tools and benefits this technology can bring to your office, you and your patients are missing out. It's easy to resist change, especially if you have misconceptions about how it will affect your dental business.
At Adit, we understand how your industry works. Our talented developers have built a trusted practice management platform that thousands of practitioners rely on to streamline their operations and improve patient outcomes. If you have been dissuaded from exploring the latest digital management tools because of any of the myths in this article, maybe it's time to rethink your options and learn more.
Our cloud-based software can bring your dental clinic into the modern age of computing and provide a centralized management experience that can seamlessly integrate with most existing PMS platforms. We've revolutionized how practices operate, helping them tap into new revenue streams, secure patient data, support business growth, and increase profitability.
You never have to worry about scalability, constantly upgrading, or needing another software provider because we never stop innovating. Adit is passionate about providing a tech-forward practice management suite that provides your team with critical technological tools to succeed, including:
Discover the facts about cloud-based practice management software and how it can improve every aspect of your dental organization. Check out our case studies and request your demo today!
Angela is a former English teacher turned marketing content specialist. Over the past 10 years, she’s developed marketing strategies to forge enduring bonds between B2B, B2C and SaaS companies and their clients through holistic education, effective communication, and captivating storytelling that moves audiences to act.
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