Refine the Patient Experience with Teledentistry

08.23.2021
| 8 min read

Safety will always be on the minds of your patients. For good reason. Teledentistry delivers on that desire.

But as it’s settled in as an emerging norm, teledentistry is increasing its impact on the broader patient experience too.

Adapt and adopt

The telehealth movement (including teledentistry) has gained ground since before 2010. Fast forward to 2019 and COVID-19 somewhat forced dentistry to adapt around more contactless patient care protocols - thus the growth of teledentistry services.

The surge continues.

Some providers are slow to adopt teledentistry but report data from CareQuest Institute for Oral Health reveals that patients are on-board.

They surveyed 111 patients and highlights indicate that patients were pleased with their teledentistry experience.

Key findings of the survey include:

Stat_PatientSatisfaction
  • 86% of patients said they were satisfied with their overall teledentistry experience.
  • 86% said they would recommend teledentistry to another person.
  • 31% reported they didn’t need in-office care following their teledentistry appointment.” [1]

Teledentistry adoption doesn’t trend away from in-person dental visits. It simply raises the bar on the overall patient experience.

  • Better patient communication
  • Less time-consuming in-office appointments
  • Convenient emergency and triage care
  • Efficient patient follow-up and referral solutions

Teledentistry and a new patient experience opportunity

Teledentistry is redefining patient contact.” A virtual visit can have the same touch-points…but in a way that many are beginning to prefer.

It’s not so much about eliminating the personal connection. That’s a burden technology innovations must often bear.

Rather, teledentistry has enhanced an already emerging trend towards contactless patient solutions:

The contactless patient experience is a best of both worlds innovation.

  • Less physical exposure in a healthcare era where caution is the rule rather than the exception
  • More opportunity to innovate around efficient patient-facing care standards

How teledentistry and the (contactless) patient experience help improve dental patient relationships

Patient satisfaction produces longterm loyalty

The more you can do to guide the patient mindset in a dental-positive direction the better. Ease, simplicity, and convenience can help.

Consider the time involved in a standard in-office dental visit. Though necessary more often than not, also consider the convenience of a virtual (contactless) visit.

  • Secure online access to you and your team via smartphone, tablet, or personal computing device
  • Online appointment scheduling
  • Digital forms viewed and completed in advance
  • Virtual payment portals and access to payment information

Convenience helps reduce the friction some feel about dental visits. The virtual dental home concept creates the perfect environment for renewing and retaining patient relationships.

Team efficiency enhances patient care standards

Dental practice management tasks and workflows are intended to tighten team efficiency. Often, the opposite happens as administrative challenges delay or slow patient care.

Teledentistry brings automation to many of those time-consuming systems. This exceeds the perspective some have about virtual dental care being primarily a video communication tool.

It is that…but there’s more under-the-hood when you implement a dedicated platform in your dental practice or across your DSO.

  • Automate tasks within your teledentistry platform to include patient follow-up, appointment scheduling, and appointment reminders.
  • Innovate within the virtual environment to communicate with patients about their pre-appointment details, their insurance questions, and other treatment related protocols.

VirtualDentistAppointment

Patient engagement expands within a virtual care environment

Like you, patients are accustomed to the remote, mobile access provided by technology. It’s less of a “stretch” for them to also consider virtual access to healthcare services.

Teledentistry supports the virtual care evolution. On-demand, 24/7 care availability sends the message that you embrace innovation designed to improve care standards.

Online capabilities create new digital amenities patients can choose.

  • Electronic (paperless) forms
  • Easy-pay options via a secure online portal
  • Real-time consultations for pre-screening, triage and emergency care, or specialist referrals
  • Stored information that’s accessible on-demand to answer questions or address concerns

The virtual dental care environment is here to stay. Expect each innovation around teledentistry to enhance the patient experience.

Check out these resources for more insight into the growing movement towards teledentistry adoption and its positive impact on your patient relationships:

It’s Time for Teledentistry Adoption Inside and Outside the Pandemic Context

Why Teledentistry is a Here-to-Stay as a Sustainable Service

A teledentistry platform with a strong bias towards the patient experience

Teledentix is an innovative, turn-key teledentistry solution created by Virtual Dental Care. The all-in-one platform will enable you to adapt teledentistry to your patient care and extend your services beyond the walls of your dental practice…and improve your patient care in the process.

  • Teledentix provides an easy-to-use video conferencing tool that’s secure, HIPAA compliant, and specific to dentistry.
  • Teledentix Basic is a perfect starting point. Begin with a free trial and then transition to a very low monthly fee. You and your patients can join unlimited video conferences including screen-share, file-share, video-share, and real-time chat communications.

LEARN MORE about the Teledentix platform.

 

[1]                https://www.carequest.org/education/resource-library/patients-give-high-marks-their-teledentistry

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