The Virtues of a Paperless Dental Practice
Peter Li - Chief Evangelist
There’s no secret that the latest tech is bringing lots of change to just about every industry. Smartphones are making work possible from anywhere, and with the latest digital security, even medical documents are safe on your server. If you’ve been wondering about the benefits or risks of going paperless, we’ve got answers to your top questions.
The Cost of Change
Naturally, the first thing you are likely thinking about is cost. Exorbitant, ongoing fees for storing information that once cost a few cents per item, is not getting you the most value out of your money. While it’s worth remembering that cost is only a small part of the puzzle, finding a solution that fits within a realistic budget will give you a great return on your investment. Costs can feel high initially, but drastic increases in productivity, peace of mind in security, and even time savings for a happier staff are benefits that don’t depreciate over time.
Dollars and cents are also not the only cost worth considering when looking into something new. Maintenance for dental software may feel like you’re shifting the burden from a strict filing regime to figuring out how to download updates, but many software providers offer their updates as automatic installations, provided free of charge.
Ability to Integrate
Each and every practice is its own unique business. Dentists and Office Manages alike have their own preferences and may build out solutions that range in purpose. Bringing your documents and records into the digital age doesn’t mean they need to sit alone. Any software worth the investment will provide you with built-in options or open integrations that will allow you to carry out all the functions and processes your practice needs. Many software solutions will work comprehensively, solving multiple needs in an office using a single product suite.
Even if you only need to move your documents to a server, make sure that your ultimate choice is compatible with the products that have kept your business operating up until now. Slowing your workflow by jumping between programs, and manually re-entering sensitive information is tedious experience and a waste of your time and money.
Keeping Secrets Safe
Providing health care is one of the most rewarding services that dentists can offer, but the care that is provided is intensely private. Laws like the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) are in place to protect not just the information of patients, but their rights to privacy. Privacy breaches against massive firms and organizations routinely make the news for their staggering volume, but you might be surprised to learn that the most common target for hackers is smaller businesses that are perceived to be easier targets due to their size, and lack of investment into cybersecurity.
When examining your options for software, secure providers will be more than happy to talk about their certifications and compliance. Completing certifications, like the ones set by Health Canada, mean that your provider is paying close attention to security. Don’t be afraid to inquire about encryption, remote storage, and even access roles, to prevent any single compromised user from accessing every piece of info about your patients.
The landscape for dental software that replaces the paper in your practice is rich and can be overwhelming. Focusing on the cost, integration, and security of the software will help weed out the option that won’t quite fit and help to refine the search for your office’s ideal solution.
Want to learn more about what practice management software can do for your office?
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