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30 Sep 2016 | Australasian Dental Practice

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How mobile devices are revolutionising the patient experience

Software

As technology continues to grow as part of our day-to-day life, mobile devices are revolutionising the way customers organise healthcare, including browsing for dental practice information, choosing a provider and booking and confirming appointments.


Dental practice management software in Australia needs to be conducive to the rising popularity of technology and the role of smartphones as a method by which we gain information and make choices. Mobile devices can play a big part in the overall patient experience, leading to increased patient satisfaction and retention and increased referrals to your practice.

Dental4Windows, a leading dental practice management solution, is aware of these changes. It has automation for appointment reminders and recalls to eliminate manual errors and make the process more efficient letting your patient know of upcoming appointments by SMS or email. Combined with Dental4Windows' integrated online booking system, eAppointments, it allows patients to use their smartphones, computer or iPad to make a booking. They can see available appointment slots in real-time and can make a booking that suits them, without needing to actually call the practice. Putting this power in the hands of the patient means they can begin to take more responsibility for their own dental care.

The new way to book dental appointments is online

An increasing number of patients are choosing online as their preferred method of appointment booking. It reduces time spent on the phone negotiating appointment openings and it can be done at any time of the day. An online booking system ideally needs to be wholly integrated with the practice management system so that the two can work in tandem - patients can easily book and the practice can just as easily confirm. D4W's online booking system, eAppointments, is wholly integrated into Dental4Windows.

Appointment reminders direct to patient smartphones

Another advantage of an integrated patient management system and appointment booking system is the reminder function - SMS or emails are delivered straight to your patient's smartphone with minimal effort. This function is automated within Dental4Windows to eliminate manual errors and make the process more efficient. This means no more missed appointments and no more angry patients who have turned up for an appointment only to discover it's been changed. An efficient practice management solution, which can also automatically update and store patient message replies, will keep your patients coming back to your practice.

Accessing your practice's website via mobile phone

Research conducted by global information and measurement company, Nielsen and Australian network provider, Telstra, suggests that 11.5 million Australians aged 14 and over accessed the internet via their mobile phone in 2014. If your practice doesn't have a website, it might be time to consider one, as you could be missing out on a lot of patient traffic. People like to have the latest information at their fingertips and a mobile-friendly website may just be the defining factor for them to choose your practice.

News and information while patients wait

A tech savvy practice may provide patients with tablets to browse news websites whilst they wait, as opposed to dusty old magazines filled with stories about celebrities. Browsing news articles may even help patients pass the waiting time with ease and lessen the anxiety of their impending appointment.

Your practice might even capitalise on tablet use by storing the practice website as the tablet homepage, giving patients more information about your healthcare centre. It's also a good idea to survey your patients after their visit to make sure you're delivering a quality service and also collect data on your patients' dental interests. Dental4Windows has integrated electronic patient forms, eForms, which allows you to obtain that information from your patients using a tablet.

Stay ahead of the market

It is important to stay ahead of the market by recognising the place technology plays in our daily habits. The rise of mobile devices may change the face of your practice and transform the patient experience. Mobile devices are here to stay and may prove the difference between a stagnant business and a flourishing dental practice. Making sure your practice has the right practice management system that is aware of these developments is integral to that success.

Dental4Windows is aware of the importance of staying ahead and is constantly updating and adding new features to keep dental practices up to date with the changing habit of their patents. A range of new features will be in the shortly released new i4 version. Dental4Windows now has automation for recalls, reminders and debtors to increase practice efficiency and your profitability. The range of features, new cloud option, eServices and award winning support and maintenance, all combine to make Dental4Windows the No. 1 choice of Australia's leading dentists.

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