Greater Efficiency, Better Results

EGP/Clinical Advances

Continuous advancements in technology enable clinicians to deliver enhanced treatment outcomes.

As dental technology continues to advance rapidly, clinicians have come to rely on better, more efficient treatment outcomes. In fact, “not incorporating these advancements detracts from a DSO’s ability to deliver care in accordance with their mission to enhance patient outcome and exceed expectations,” says Dr. Robert Brody, chief clinical officer, Great Expressions Dental Centers.

Some of the biggest game changers have included advancements in dental materials (implants, zirconia, and universal bonding agents have expanded and improved treatment modalities), the refinement of digital intra-oral scanners and the ability of the practice management software system to link all practices across the organization, according to Brody. Intra-oral scanners provide a visual reference for patients, aiding in their understanding of the procedure, he points out. They also facilitate more precise and consistent preparations and impressions. “Digital intra-oral impressions are more accurate than traditional impressions, less time-consuming and less technique-sensitive,” he says. The result is an enhanced treatment outcome, as well as lower supply and lab costs, reduced chair time and greater patient comfort compared to traditional impressions.”

Likewise, improvements in practice management software have led to greater collaboration among clinicians, who can more easily share diagnostic data and discuss treatment plans. “Instant access to patient records leads to more efficient delivery of quality dental care,” says Brody. “The subsequent sharing of ideas leverages the skills of specialists and general dentists to enhance treatment outcome.” In turn, they can deliver more successful multi-phase treatment plans with fewer patient appointments, he adds.

Establishing guidelines
Successfully incorporating new technology throughout a large dental practice depends on solid communication between the DSO and its clinicians, as well as ongoing education and support. “GEDC utilizes a Doctor Panel that reviews best practices regarding cutting-edge advancements and develops guidelines to incorporate into the group’s delivery of care,” says Brody. “We rely on the experience and collaboration of the group’s doctors to establish the guidelines for the use of new technology.”

The DSO also provides continuing education (CE) on all new technologies, including lectures, office meetings with team members and hands-on mentorship. “Ongoing support is similar to implementation,” Brody explains. “In addition to continuing education and mentorship to our affiliated doctors, these doctors participate in group-sponsored study clubs that share best practices.” When clinicians are able to use new products to their full potential, they can achieve the best treatment results for their patients, he adds.