With five offices serving the needs of patients in Southern Alberta’s Lethbridge, Blairmore and Magrath communities, Bryan Murray, D.D.S. and everyone else in the Able Dental Group pride themselves on providing ‘Excellent Care – Exceptional Service’ in all their service locations. Working together to offer patients the newest dental treatments, they rely on ABELDent clinical and practice management software to support their thriving practices.
Dr. Murray, his associates, and 70 plus clinical and administrative staff members see hundreds of patients each week. Able Dental Group offers a complete range of family dental services including surgery and dental implants, dental imaging, general anesthetic, IV sedation and snoring and sleep apena appliances.
As owner/operator, Dr. Murray opened an office in Lethbridge in 2000 with standard paper-based charting after having worked in the Calgary/Canmore area for several years. However, because his long-term business plan called for quick growth into other communities, he knew that he had to eventually move to an electronic medical system both for the sake of efficiency and to provide the level of dental care he promised his patients.
Dr. Murray and his team used ABLEDent software for years but decided to implement a chartless system in early 2009. "We knew we had to move to an electronic system quickly because we were always searching for the latest hard-copy patient information and trying to match it to their specific file-folder chart," explains Dr. Murray. "Because we are a referral-based practice, in addition to our main practice, we would have patient details delivered via email, snail mail or even fax. It was becoming very cumbersome and inefficient, and it took a lot of leg work just to stay on top of the charting. So many times, a staff member would ask where a particular patient chart was and who had it last. As we got busier and began to expand, we realized that we had to change the way we were handling the clinical and administrative aspects of the practice. We also needed to access patient records in our other satellite offices."
"ABELDent became the foundation for modernizing our practice," adds the doctor. "We take learning and innovation seriously and are constantly looking for ways to include cutting-edge technologies to help deliver exceptional dental services."
Now that Able Dental Group is almost totally electronic, there’s no going back. "We have a vault in the basement where we keep the old paper charts that have been scanned into ABELDent," says the dentist. "That room collects a lot of dust, though, because there’s little need to find anything in hard copy anymore. Because of the software system’s flexibility, we have all our patient histories at our fingertips through ABELDent’s Documents tab."
Dr. Murray adds that ABELDent becomes especially useful when more serious dental work requires general anesthesia. "Patient histories and other medical issues or conditions must be to taken into consideration before any procedure is performed. ABELDent provides a comprehensive overview of each patient’s information and history helping us to ensure their utmost safety and the best possible surgical outcome."
IT manager, Dennis Toth, says that from a technology perspective, the number one expectation of ABELDent is reliability. "When someone fires up a computer in the morning, they don’t need to ask if the software is going to work that day," he notes. "It has to respond quickly and efficiently. From an operations standpoint, ABELDent has stood the test of time. It’s very stable."
Toth adds that he and his colleagues are comfortable knowing that ABELDent is so scalable. As the practice grows, ABELDent can easily expand as well, especially in storage capacity and retrieval rates. "Dentists looking to deploy a clinical and administrative management system must look at how much information can the system store and retrieve efficiently," Toth explains. "ABELDent is built with this concept in mind. Our receptionists, hygienists, dental assistants and any of our doctors all have access to any data quickly and effortlessly, regardless of how old the information is."
The staff at the Able Dental Group has had excellent training on the system from the start, says Toth. "ABELDent trainers were fantastic because they took the time to visit us here in Alberta and provided exceptional hands-on guidance. Our administrative manager Michelle has done a lot of work with ABEL over the years, so if we have any issues and need a quick answer, she is our ‘go to’ in-house professional. She has worked with the system for a long time and has a lot of knowledge and insight. This gives us overall continuity so that everyone in the practice knows how to get the greatest benefit and value from the system every day."
In addition, the team takes advantage of ABELDent’s online support. "Their remote training modules are very effective for us," says Toth. "We set up a small classroom to encourage ongoing learning. It’s nice to know that we have professional trainers on the other end to keep us up to speed on new features and processes."
On the technical side, he adds, ABEL’s support is always available and helpful. "If we have any technical glitches, ABEL is just a phone call away and solves our issue quickly. I also find ABELDent’s website Help feature to be very comprehensive. If I don’t know a particular error code, all I have to do is a quick search and it gives me an immediate answer so I know what’s going on and how to fix it."
Dr. Murray says he and his team are very happy with the benefits that ABELDent offers. "ABELDent has helped us grow the practice into new communities. It has become a critical and reliable tool."
He adds that the Able Dental Group’s patients appreciate having a system like ABELDent especially when dealing with billing, insurance claims and scheduling. Patients tell him that it’s nice to have an administrative ‘one-stop-shopping’ experience.
The overall benefit, says Dr. Murray, is peace of mind, knowing that patient clinical and administrative information is securely consolidated in one place. "ABELDent provides a firm foundation for our practice and it’s been a good choice from a business perspective. We look forward to future innovations that will further enhance the management of our busy dental clinics.
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