Running a dental practice is no stroll in the park. But using the right tools and implementing the right strategies can make your life a lot easier. Here are the top 10 must-have tools for dental office staff:
1. An All-In-One Dental Practice Management Platform
If you have been using different applications to store EHR, handle credit card payments, process insurance claims, store x-ray images, collect testimonials, etc., you know how chaotic the processes can get.
The disparate systems may not integrate well while cobbling together different software adds to the stress of managing complex workflows. An all-in-one PMS that incorporates all the features you need — from EHR and patient communication to billing and reputation management — is a must for modern dental practices.
2. Cloud-based Dental Software
If you’re managing multiple locations, it’s almost impossible to sync up all the systems and data in real-time if each office runs on-premise software. On the other hand, cloud dental software allows you to manage all patient data and business processes from a centralized location.
Dentists and hygienists can check their schedules and review patient records from anywhere and at any time. Plus, the vendor takes care of the updates and maintenance, so you don’t have to worry about hiring a large IT team.
3. An Online Booking System
How much time do your employees spend on booking appointments and reminding patients of their visits? An online booking tool can free up 30% to 50% of your staff’s time so they can focus on revenue-generating activities and delivering a better patient experience.
Offering the option to book appointments online can help you acquire and retain more patients, as many people prefer to schedule their visits at their convenience. Plus, you can automate confirmation and reminders to minimize no-shows.
4. Billing and Invoicing Feature
Your cloud dental software should include an integrated and secure billing and invoicing feature to help streamline processes, reduce errors, improve cash flow, and deliver an outstanding patient experience that keeps people coming back.
tab32’s invoicing feature allows you to send e-statements to patients immediately after their visits and provide them with an online payment link. Our billing and e-claim function enables you to submit claims and attachments in one place without juggling multiple vendors and payer portals.
5. Cloud Imaging and File Storage
Digital file storage may not be sexy, but absolutely necessary in today’s digital world. However, on-premise storage solutions are expensive — you must purchase the hardware, rent the space for the servers, hire IT personnel to manage the equipment, and stay on top of security and compliance.
A dental management platform with a cloud storage component (especially for imaging) takes the cost and hassle of storage off your plate. Plus, staff from different locations can access the same patient data in real-time to improve efficiency and quality of care.
6. Financial Reporting and Documentation
If you plan to sell or expand your dental practice, you must follow generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) to demonstrate financial statements compliance. Having your bookkeeping ducks in a row can save you a lot of headaches down the road.
A cloud practice management platform offers the best way to centralize and simplify the operations of multi-location dental practices and DSOs. You can have financial data from all offices in one place and avoid errors in your financial statements due to version control issues.
7. Patient Communication Module
Good patient communication is key to retaining more patients and increasing patient lifetime value. Building relationships with your patients isn’t limited to their time in your office. You must stay top of mind before and between visits to cultivate loyalty.
A robust patient communication module in your dental practice management platform allows you to automate reminders, follow-ups, and other routine communications. Meanwhile, secure two-way texting ensures that patients get the personal attention they need when they need it.
8. Comprehensive Patients Notes and Records
You must know your patients’ lives and show that you care to build trust and cultivate loyalty. But with so many patients in your practice, how can you and your staff remember everything? And what if a new employee joins your practice?
Keeping good notes and making the data accessible to everyone via patient records stored in the cloud makes it much easier to keep track of your patients’ lives and preferences. Anyone can update these notes, and everyone can use the information to foster patient relationships.
9. Online Forms
Many dental practices implemented complicated patient portals only to realize that they are hard to use, creating a frustrating patient experience and hampering their efficiency. But you know what… patients don’t want portals! Instead, you can keep things simple and personal with e-forms.
You can create custom online forms with tab32 and send them to patients via text or email before an appointment or have them fill out the information in your office on a tablet. Besides streamlining the patient experience, you can also eliminate the time-consuming and error-prone process of transferring data from paper to your system.
10. Incomplete Treatment Reminders
Incomplete treatments not only impact your revenue- the poor outcome can also tarnish your reputation. But having your staff go through patient records manually and calling each patient is costly, inefficient, and prone to oversight.
Automation is the name of the game. tab32’s Revenue Discovery module detects incomplete treatments in EHRs and sends personalized messages to schedule follow-up appointments. The built-in automated workflows help you generate additional income and faster collection.
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