The leaves are turning, the Pumpkin Spice Lattes are flowing, and 2020 is just around the corner! While seasonal delights come and go, maintaining an efficient, secure, and well-caffeinated dental practice is a year-round necessity. As we head into fall, closing out another year and preparing for the next, now is a good time to consider whether or not your practice’s IT company is the best fit. There are an abundance of IT providers, however, not all of them understand the importance of your practice’s technology, and will do everything in their power to deliver the best return on your IT investment.
Expertise in the Dental Industry
When considering an IT company, it’s important to choose a provider with expertise in the unique technology you use, which is why choosing an IT provider who specializes in the dental industry is a smart move. When an IT company walks in your door, that provider should already have a solid understanding of the practice management software you use (such as Open Dental), and how to integrate it properly with your digital imaging and patient clinical charting. An IT firm that already works with dental practices, knows the industry lingo, and is comfortable working with dental software and equipment, is a powerful first line of defense when it comes to troubleshooting technology issues.
Dental-specific IT providers can prevent problems before they start. Because they already know compatibility standards and can recommend equipment that runs smoothly together, you’ll spend less time and money getting to the root of frustrating issues. When your IT partner understands how your practice operates, this allows you to focus on your patients, rather than explaining what a Pan is to a general IT provider who is new to the dental industry.
A Focus on Your Future
Do you only talk to your IT provider when you call them about an issue that’s come up? Your provider should call you regularly to find out what you need. Dealing with support issues is only half the job; your IT partner should also work with you to put your IT budget to its best use, including:
- Planning for upgrades at a sensible and productive pace
- Discovering problems faced by your staff, and creating solutions that work
- Supporting practice growth with specialized solutions knowledge, such as understanding how to build and connect multi-site practices, and predicting and preventing hurdles that may arise
Takes Security Seriously
Healthcare is one of the most targeted industries for cyber attacks. As a medical professional, you have legal requirements, and much of HIPAA compliance relies on technology. Patient Protected Health Information (PHI) is an attractive target for hackers, and it doesn’t matter the size or location of your dental practice—eventually, someone will test your security defenses to see what they can steal.
Any IT partner you work with should have a complete and up-to-date understanding of HIPAA law, and understand their role in ensuring your dental practice is compliant. Did you know that under HIPAA law, a periodic risk assessment is required? This is more than just a checklist—it’s a thorough examination of your office, the policies and procedures you’ve implemented, and the equipment you use. Working with an IT provider with a dedicated compliance team, who understands the technology and has a deep understanding of your dental practice’s setup, allows you to better manage and mitigate security risks.
Additionally, your IT partner should provide you with a signed Business Associate Agreement (BAA) at the beginning of your partnership, which helps protect your practice by holding that partner directly liable should they fail to safeguard your electronic PHI in accordance with HIPAA law. Your IT provider should be upfront about their responsibilities as a business associate, and ensure the BAA is clear, so you can rest easy knowing they’ll be by your side to prevent breaches and take care of your patients.
Delivers the Complete Package
You use more IT than a computer at your front desk. What about the AV equipment in the exam room? What about your imaging and charting equipment? What about all of the cabling that connects the exam rooms to each other? Your IT company should handle all the IT you use, so you only have to deal with one provider, one support source, and one expert to plan for the future.
This fall, fall in love with your practice’s IT company! Digital Technology Partners’ clients enjoy the above benefits year-round. We currently serve over 500 dentists across the United States and have a full staff of techies who specialize not only in IT but in IT for the dental industry specifically. We care for your technology the same way you care for your patients and work tirelessly to ensure you can spend less time worrying about technology, and more time on dentistry. Discover all of the benefits of working with a dental-specific IT company that knows exactly what you need—request a no-obligation office evaluation to get started.
Categories: Your Software