Instrument Management Is a Plus for Every Practice Looking to Bounce Back Higher

| 07-28-2020
Instrument Management Is a Plus for Every Practice Looking to Bounce Back Higher

It’s More Critical – and Easier – Than Ever to Make the Switch

As dental offices continue to adapt to heightened infection prevention concerns, there is still a lot of uncertainty about what works and what doesn’t. These doubts make it difficult to know whether the steps you are taking are worth it. But what if we told you that there is an existing solution in the market – one with 95-percent satisfaction among surveyed users* – that can help you provide a safe, efficient, and more compliant practice environment for both patients and staff?

We are talking, of course, about the Instrument Management System (IMS™), which helps practices keep instruments organized and protected from chairside to cleaning to sterilization to storage. While IMS™ is not a mandatory requirement, the benefits of adopting the system are simply overwhelming in this enhanced infection prevention and safety environment. The fact is that IMS™ is a major benefit to practices that are positioning themselves as a safe place to come back to, one that goes above-and-beyond staff and patient expectations.

But it is so much more than that: IMS™ enhances safety, improves efficiency, drives practice revenue, and reduces costs. Sound too good to be true? It’s not. Here’s why:

Limit Infection Risks and Enhance Safety

Right now, in our daily lives we are trying to limit when we touch objects unnecessarily. Why would it be any different for handling contaminated instruments? By keeping instruments neatly organized in cassettes from chairside to storage, clinicians only handle instruments when they are in use in the operatory. That means no hand scrubbing or touching contaminated instruments, which significantly reduces the risk of sharps injuries and exposure to microbial pathogens. When implemented at Pacific Dental Services, IMS™ eliminated the pain of sharps injuries.

In addition to improving safety, IMS™  makes it easier to achieve optimal instrument cleaning and sterilization, reducing the risk of infection. That’s because cassettes:

  1. Keep instruments spaced out and in place to allow the cleaning detergents and water to reach the instruments,
  2. Promote proper drainage and drying, and
  3. Help to prevent overloading of sterilizers so the sterilization parameters can be met.


Ensure Dental Team Productivity

For the foreseeable future, everything in the practice is going to take longer – including patient in-out flow and operatory turnover – and, of course, time is money. IMS™ helps streamline reprocessing, and when compared to manual reprocessing, offices that use IMS™ see a time savings of five to 10 minutes per procedure, on average.*

Efficiency drives productivity and makes it easier to catch-up on missed patient appointments. When Dr. Izzy Naem of Floss & Co. adopted IMS™ for his practice, the team was actually able to save 15 minutes off their average appointment time, leading to a 40% increase in new patients. Similarly, Dr. Edward Lin of Orthodontic Specialists of Green Bay uses IMS™ to keep his practice efficient. “To work without the Hu-Friedy IMS™ System would be pure chaos,” Dr. Lin reports. “It would be physically impossible to be able to see the number of patients that we see in a clinical day without the IMS™ system.”


Optimize Practice Revenue

Greater efficiency and enhanced productivity are critical to optimizing practice revenue, especially in this environment, and IMS™ provides a clear opportunity for that. Increasing efficiency increases patient flow and decreases waste, which naturally impacts the bottom line.

Additionally, IMS™ helps ensure instrument longevity. By keeping instruments stored securely, the risk of a bent or broken probe or explorer, dropping and chipping a scaler, or scratching the surface of a mirror during cleaning is greatly reduced, saving money and avoiding waste. As Dr. Michael Drone puts it, “[With IMS™] we didn't have instruments breaking, we didn't have them bending. When we opened them up they were all perfectly aligned in the order that we use them. More importantly, we knew if something was missing, what it was, and we could replace that.”

The IMS™ investment calculator is a great way to estimate the savings that your practice could see.


Enhance Practice Reputation with Back-to-Practice Patient Communications

As practices begin to reopen, they are appropriately communicating the tangible and visible changes they have made to optimize safety and ease patient anxiety about coming back to the office. While these communications are great, in almost all efforts, practices are not talking about instrument sterilization and reprocessing – and the critical role it plays in overall infection prevention – likely because they haven’t put in the effort to support those claims.

Some might argue that communicating at this level of detail will not resonate with patients, but when practices are doing everything they can to demonstrate a competitive advantage, every proactive and visible step a practice takes counts. Patients may not always know what to look for when it comes to infection prevention, so education on the specifics can help differentiate your practice in their minds. See, for example, this letter from Queensboro Plaza Dental Care and how impactful it can be when a practice can demonstrate their above-and-beyond commitment to instrument management.   

For patients, instruments in cassettes – versus a pile of scary instruments on a tray – demonstrate organization and safety, providing an added level of comfort in the operatory. Dr. Naem summarizes it nicely: “When…the patient sees a cassette there and the doctor is gloved up and ready and opens that cassette in front of the patient it just says ‘Hey, we care about your safety and we care about you.’” Making that type of right impression could be the difference maker in this new normal.

It’s Easier than Ever to Make the Switch

While there is no time like the present, we understand that it can be daunting to make such a major investment in your practice, especially in this economically fraught environment. But that shouldn’t be a barrier to accessing this critical system, especially when transformative infection prevention is more important than ever. That’s why we’re offering an IMS™ bundle – or starter kit – that makes it easier than ever to do the right thing for your practice. What’s more, in a recent survey, 100 percent of respondents agreed that IMS™ was worth the investment for their practice.*

So, there really are no more excuses. If you want to do everything you can to provide a safe practice for both patients and staff, it’s time to make the switch. Request a consultation with your local HuFriedyGroup representative today. 

*Based on market survey results.

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