Dr. Christopher Lugo was facing administrative challenges to the growth of his multi-location practice, Puget Sound Pediatric Dentistry. Faced with administrative redundancies and inefficiencies, he knew something had to change. In April 2013, Dr. Lugo and his staff made the decision to invest in Dentrix Enterprise, allowing the practice to transform from a single-practice mindset to a multi-location, multi-specialty mindset by centralizing functions and allowing the team more time to focus on expanding the practice. Below, Dr. Lugo describes his experiences with Dentrix Enterprise and the most significant aspects of ROI.
We originally had Dentrix G5, which did not fit into our growth model. When we opened that office, in Lake Stevens, WA, it was only a 15-minute drive from our main office, in Marysville. Our patients wanted the flexibility to travel to both locations depending on which provider was there and which appointments were available. We were managing hundreds of duplicate charts, which distracted us from the overall big picture. That’s when we knew we had to make a change, and we invested in Dentrix Enterprise.
Since the upgrade, everything now flows smoothly between the groups. Patients no longer have to fill out their health history at each office. Dentrix Enterprise has centralized all our data, so that we can access the reports we need collectively for all the clinics at the click of a button. It also allows us to have multiple providers and specialties in multiple locations, all managed from the same database. This gives us the consistency we need as a multi-location practice.
Dentistry is constantly changing along with data management and scheduling. Upgrading to Dentrix Enterprise has standardized our operations clinically and administratively through centralized scheduling, billing, collections, continuing care, accounts receivable, insurance processing, and many other integrated third-party applications, particularly Solutionreach patient communication software and Jellyfish, which reduces patient wait times.
A Secure Solution
Parents are not stupid—they want to make sure their children’s personal information is safe as well as their own information. For us, a data breach would destroy the practice. Security options and settings within Dentrix Enterprise give us the flexibility to assign each staff member a different ID/password and individual customized security rights within Dentrix. This is very helpful for on-boarding new staff members while minimizing security risks.
Also, since we are on a self-contained network with a SQL server, it's easy to protect our data, as well as the security of the thin-client cloud access each workstation uses. We’ve set up the cloud backup and onsite backup, so we try to be as redundant as possible, in case there’s some catastrophic issue. Dentrix Enterprise also securely monitors our data backup on their side.
The biggest benefit of Dentrix Enterprise has been its ability to help us create systems and protocols for every scenario we face as a pediatric dental office, therefore saving us time and money, and often leading to a better workflow. Each process is standardized and staff members know the routine and how to get the job done.
Because we have such streamlined systems and processes both clinically and administratively, staff members have more time to focus on the patient experience. We have the time to communicate with our patients and have quality interactions with families instead of scrambling around managing duplicate patient charts or using unreliable technology.
The charting and reporting features in Dentrix Enterprise enable us to see what treatment plans are outstanding, so we can follow up with patients to urge them to schedule their pending treatment in each office, which is helpful for recovering untapped revenue. These features are very easy to use, so it's simple to train new staff. The clinical staff enters the necessary treatment plan, discusses with the patient, and can show them on the computer since it's color-coded and very visual, and the administrative staff can see that same treatment plan immediately, provide a cost estimate, and schedule the patient for the appointment without even leaving their chair.
We’ve also noticed that support for Dentrix Enterprise is superior because they have such a good system for group practices. They have a brilliant support staff that helps us a lot. We’ve never run into any major problems. If we ever have an issue, they remote in immediately and just take care of it. It updates for everyone across our network. We don’t have to do anything—it will already be done.
Also, if there’s ever any issue that the Dentrix Enterprise support staff doesn’t readily have an answer to, they’ll check with other support groups, and they’ll have an answer. It’s really a partnership with Henry Schein One at this point. As we’ve gotten bigger, they’ve been able to adjust to what we need, and they’re very receptive to our feedback. This is a really nice set up for us, and it’s been great for our growth.
Learn what’s new with the latest Dentrix Enterprise 8.0.9 upgrade.
About Christopher Lugo, DMD
Dr. Lugo is a specialist in the field of pediatric dentistry and is currently the owner of Puget Sound Pediatric Dentistry, which has 4 offices north of Seattle. Dr. Lugo obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics from UCLA and his Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from Harvard School of Dental Medicine. He practiced general dentistry in the Boston area before completing his pediatric dental residency at the University of Washington Children’s Hospital. His previous faculty appointments include Boston University Goldman’s School of Dentistry, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, and University of Washington School of Dentistry. Committed to keeping current with the evolving specialty of pediatric dentistry, Dr. Lugo is an active member of the American Dental Association and American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. He is also involved with the Washington State and the Snohomish County dental societies.