Blog

Be Ready to Reopen, Part Two

Hu-Friedy
| 05-06-2020
Revenue and safety

Let us Help You Get Patients Back in Your Chair

There is a famous quote by David Brooks that states, "Almost every successful person begins with two beliefs: the future can be better than the present, and I have the power to make it so." There is no doubt that this idea is extraordinarily relevant for dentistry. But listen, nobody is saying it’s going to be easy. The amount of professional and personal anxiety has never been higher. As humans, we simply have to acknowledge that. And once we give ourselves the grace to feel what we need to feel, there is really only one direction we can all go – and that’s forward. So, let’s explore what forward looks like.

But first, we at HuFriedyGroup want to thank you. If you are reading this blog, you honor us with your trust and attention. Over the last eight weeks, we have looked at how we can add value to you regarding COVID-19 in terms of phases. For us, the first three phases focused on education, information, and tools designed to better understand COVID-19 and how to best respond from a practice perspective. From our COVID-19 Resource Page, to webinars and this blog, the level of engagement we have seen from you during these initial phases is something we’ve never experienced before. Again, we thank you for the confidence you’ve shown in us.

We are now moving into what we call Phase Four, where certain states are beginning to lift restrictions and dental practices are contemplating serving patients once again. With that in mind, we want to supplement the educational content we’ve been providing with specific fiscal and clinical solutions designed to help practices address the challenges they will be facing upon returning.

No doubt, there are issues that dentists, as small business owners, face – everything from PPP loans, to staff retention, to paying bills, to name just a few. For sure those are huge subjects, but when breaking down an infinitely complex topic like practice re-openings relative to the specific value HuFriedyGroup can provide, we feel there are two big issues we are in a unique position to help practices with – revenue and safety of both patients and, critically, staff. That said, these issues are not separate and distinct – in fact, it has never been more important to treat them as inextricably linked.

Instrument management systems cassette

Revenue: Very simply, practices need to recoup lost revenue, and that starts with driving patient volume. But since everything is connected, patients will be reluctant to come back if they do not feel safe. Bottom line, we share your goal of getting patients back in your chair and want to specifically highlight how we can help here.

Safety: There is no doubt that PPE availability is a top-of-mind concern for dental professionals, as are actions like removing magazines and refreshment centers from waiting rooms, creating new ways for patients to enter and leave the practice, and auditing current processes for operatory turnover, just to name a very few. HuFriedyGroup stands ready to support you with an unmatched portfolio depth of PPE and infection prevention consumables that are essential to everyday practice.

The Revenue-Safety (and Efficiency) Connection: Safety starts with PPE and other immediately visible measures designed to protect patients and staff, but in today’s environment, practices simply have to go deeper than what appears on the surface. Now is the time to invest in cassette-based sterilization and instrument reprocessing to provide a foundation of safety and efficiency for practices and their staff. At HuFriedyGroup, we refer to that as our Instrument Management System (IMS™). In today's climate, the reputation of your practice is everything. IMS is a secret weapon you can point to as evidence of how much safety means and how much you care.

In the coming weeks, practices are going to be bombarded by organizations (many new to dental) that want to sell something. And, for sure, we at HuFriedyGroup also have a revenue commitment we want to achieve. But, more than that, our 100-plus-year heritage speaks to our desire to partner with you – to make a real difference in your professional life – to help you be the Best in Practice. So, regarding IMS, which we have been supporting practices with for over 35 years, we fundamentally believe it is a secret weapon – a true game changer, especially in today’s climate.

Why? Well, It Solves Several Problems

IMS

  • Efficiency, Simplicity & Safety – When practices come back, everything is going to take longer – including patient in-out flow and operatory turnover – and, of course, time is money. Thus, practices simply cannot afford inefficiency as they return. Another thing practices cannot afford right now is sharps injuries. Sharps not only impact staff availability, but also potentially introduce blood and disease into the practice. Knowing you’ve invested in their safety will go a long way toward making both staff and patients feel comfortable. As documented in this case study, IMS from HuFriedyGroup transformed the sharps problem that Pacific Dental Services was having.
  • Cost Savings – Again, beyond PPE, there is the protection of current investments. For example, instruments must be maintained and optimized to ensure there is not a need to replace them, and cassettes prevent corrosion and discoloration. IMS is also designed to protect against instrument breakage and extend their useful life. By keeping instruments stored securely, the risk of dropping and chipping a scaler or scratching the surface of mirror during cleaning is greatly reduced, saving money and avoiding waste.
  • Practice Reputation Management – And, back to our desire to partner with you in getting patients back in your chair, we 100-percent believe that implementing IMS – and demonstrating that investment to your patients – will help position your practice as safe to come back to. As Izzy Naem of Floss & Co. puts it, “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.’” That will drive your revenue, as well as enhance the reputation of your practice.

A Final Thought on Your WHY

We have always found inspiration in Simon Sinek’s TedTalk where he states, “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” As we look at dentistry – an industry that we are proud to be a part of and support – there is a “rational why” and an “emotional why.” From a rational perspective, people need to go to the dentist. They don’t go for white teeth, they go (even if they don’t really understand this concept) because of the documented link between oral health and overall health.

From an emotional perspective, we applaud Dr. Jason Lipscomb, who posted this to TheDentalHacks Instagram page. Beyond the clinical transformations that dental professionals provide by leveraging their education, training, and skill, the “emotional why” is rooted in a kind heart and a caring spirit. PPE is critical on so many levels, but it will never be able to cover or cloak the human connection that dental professionals have with their patients.

Revisit Part One of this blog post