Digital Marketing Internet Management Mobile Social Media


Reviews, Payments, and Patient Messaging Software for Dentists

“Not only do we get quality leads, but it doesn’t take our staff time on the phone to get the appointment scheduled.”

Source: Reviews, Payments, and Patient Messaging Software for Dentists | Podium

In 2021 monitoring your online presence and communicating with patients via text is not an option it is a business necessity.

You could assign and train staff members to do all of this and then attempt to manage and evaluate how they are doing, or you can simply hire experts to do it for you. Outsourcing certain business processes has been trending for years. Now with improved technology and the Covid pandemic pushing people to more online activity e-services are becoming the preferred method of doing business. There are many reasons for this, not the least of which are better results at lower costs.

Podium is a service that provides dentists with a system to generate online reviews, see when reviews are posted, communicate instantly via text, send electronic statements and more. The system can be embedded in an existing web page and integrates with the major practice management systems including Dentrix.

Internet Mobile

5G in the US: Why the network of the future has not yet delivered on the revolution that we were promised.


In 2020, 5G speeds in the US did not come anywhere close to the 10 Gbps commonly associated with the latest cellular technology. The data collected from 1 October 2020 to 31 December 2020 by our speed test , which measures the quality of Internet connections on millions of devices yearly, shows that 5G networks in the US did not deliver the super cellular connections that we were promised.

Source: 5G in the US: Why the network of the future has not yet delivered on the revolution that we were promised.

I have a 5G phone, the Samsung Galaxy S-20. However frankly I do not see much difference in performance. Most of the time I am using Wi-Fi.

Digital Marketing Internet Management Mobile Paperless

Can your website do this?

From a Sesame Communications promotion:

Online Appointment Booking: New and existing patients can quickly book appointments on your website that sync with your Dentrix PMS
Virtual Waiting Room + Tap-to-Text: Deliver a safe and effective virtual waiting room experience for patients and staff
• Custom Design, Branding & Copywriting: Help your practice’s website stand out from competitors
Virtual Consultation: Provide a basic, free consultation, before the first in-person visit with a prospective patient occurs
SSL Certificate: Secure communication between your practice’s website and your patient’s internet browser
Responsive Design: Your website will provide a great user experience across all device types including desktop, mobile, and tablet
Live Backgrounds: Immediately capture the attention of visitors to your site with a beautiful, moving, site background

Your practice web site should not be a once in a lifetime experience just for new patients. A good dental website includes support for existing patients. In addition to the appointment booking and tap to text features shown above your website should also allow patients to fill out interactive forms (not just a pdf) check the time of future appointments and pay their bill.

Internet Management Mobile Software

5 Reasons You Should Be Sending Electronic Billing Statements

From Dentrix Magazine:

Most people have their phones with them all of the time, and they are constantly checking email and buying things online. Since patients are already doing that, why not send them their billing statement in a way you know they’ll see it and allow them to pay their balance online right then?

With electronic billing statements, patients can see their statement wherever they are and whenever it’s convenient for them, and the same thing is true of online payments. When patients can pay their bill right from the email message they receive, they don’t have to find time to write out a check and mail it or call the office during office hours to make a payment over the phone. They can pay whenever it’s convenient for them, which means you’ll get the payment faster than you would have if you were waiting on their check or their call.

Source: 5 Reasons You Should Be Sending Electronic Billing Statements – Dentrix Magazine

This one reason alone should be enough for you to start using electronic billing and online bill pay. Do you really expect people to write and then mail you a paper check? How 1980s. It baffles me how few dentists are using online bill pay…it is a no brainer.

Follow the link for the other four reasons to be sending e-statements. Then just do it.

Management Mobile

Two Way Conversational Texting

This is a direct pull from a Curve ad. However it is worth showing for two reasons. Most of your patients (64%) prefer text messages. Did you know that? Are you providing that? Most patient texting systems are one way only. Curve now has two way texting. I like that a lot.

Future Tech Hardware Mobile Telemedicine

CES sees rise in telehealth tech in response to pandemic

From Las Vegas Review-Journal:

“This year, with all of the digital health products, we’ve seen rapid acceleration of these technologies given the global pandemic,” said Lesley Rohrbaugh, director of market research for the Consumer Technology Association, which owns and presents CES. “It’s definitely a category that has been rising over the past few years. It’s been a big category during CES. It will be again for CES 2021.”

Source: CES sees rise in telehealth tech in response to pandemic | Las Vegas Review-Journal

Follow the link for a rundown of some of the amazing devices now available for at home telemedicine, including:

— Toothpic, a teledentistry program that partnered with Philips. For $10, users can get help with a specific dental issue within six hours just by taking a photo of the problem area. An in-depth oral health report using six photos is available in less than 24 hours for $35.

General Hardware Management Mobile

Best UV Phone Sanitizers 2020

UV Phone sanitizers are suddenly hot. I suggest you get a few and provide phone sanitizing as a free extra to all your patients. The patients will appreciate this, especially during the pandemic and it gets the phone out of their hands during the appointment. I suggest you have the sanitizer in the treatment room where the patient can see it. That will add to the the interest and more importantly reduce the anxiety we all seem to feel when our phones are out of out control.

Below is a buyers guide.

From iMore:

Of all the UV sanitizing devices we’ve seen, this specialized gadget from PhoneSoap is the most convenient. It zaps away bacteria and virus germs, charges your device, and functions wirelessly! Any object you put inside this magic box will come out squeaky clean—keys, headphones, your favorite fidget spinner—you name it. The best part is that any device that supports Qi wireless charging will be charged simultaneously while it is cleaned. The sanitizing process takes about 10 minutes.

Source: Best UV Phone Sanitizers 2020 | iMore

Corona Pandemic Diagnostics Internet Mobile Telemedicine

Could your Fitbit or Apple Watch detect early COVID-19 symptoms?

From  Reuters:

Fitbit and other wearable devices typically linked to exercise are being studied as ways to identify people who are potentially infected with COVID-19 before symptoms appear, when they can unknowingly spread the disease.

Source: Could your Fitbit or Apple Watch detect early COVID-19 symptoms? – Reuters

The linked article hits many of my hot buttons regarding future tech in medicine and dentistry. It is also up to the second relevant as it provides a potential break through in Covid 19 diagnosis.

it seems that researches could identify people who had contracted Covid 19 based on changes in heart rate before any of the overt symptoms were apparent. Click the link for the details.

Reportedly researches could detect 80% of users who had Covid 19 based on wearable data. What the article does not state is how many false positives were detected. In other words did Fitbit data suggest a person had Covid who in fact did not? In many ways a large percentage of false positives is a bigger problem than the 20% who had it who did not receive the early warning diagnosis from their wearable.

The potential to improve the human condition with this type of technology is awesome. Would it not be fantastic if our health could be constantly monitored by that big data AI in the cloud and potential diseases detected and treated early? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we knew we had early asymptomatic Covid and we could avoid infecting the rest of the family? Would it not be great if the doctor in sky knew everything about us and could remind (not nag…remind) us to get more sleep, loose a few pounds and skip that extra six pack of Bud?

Okay you see the problem. Who has access to all that extremely personal health information? Is it safe?

RELATED: Garmin a major supplier of GPS and other wearable devices has suffered a MAJOR cyber attack.



New Phone

I just upgraded my smart phone to the new Samsung Galaxy S20.

The new phone is very nice, the camera is awesome. It is set up for 5G…whatever. However the best part was the transition. I was not looking forward to it as my past experiences have been less than ideal. This time it went very fast and easy, in just a mater of minutes I walked out of the Sprint store with everything of consequence was transferred to the new phone and working like a charm.

Corona Pandemic Digital Marketing e-Services Internet Management Mobile

‘Dental Cupid’ Makes Pandemic-Era Matches Between Emergency Patients And Dentists

So Abdul and his team set to work, and in three days and three all-nighters, they created an online directory of dentists who provide emergency care, including where they’re located, their specialities, and whether they accept Medicaid and other forms of insurance.”

If you believe you have a dental emergency and have not been able to reach your dentist or do not have a dentist, we may be able to assist you in those circumstances,”

Source: ‘Dental Cupid’ Makes Pandemic-Era Matches Between Emergency Patients And Dentists | CommonHealth

Cameras Digital Marketing Mobile

Guide for Making High Quality Smart Phone Videos

From my friends at TNT Dental. Video can be a powerful tool. Unfortunately many DIY dental videos I see are just bad. These tips are simple and will help you avoid most amateur mistakes.

TNT recommends you make a short (30 second) video for patients to view before the first visit returning from the pandemic shutdown. You can put this video on your web page, social media accounts or send it as an e-blast.

Corona Pandemic Mobile Security

Coronavirus scams on the increase, warn police and FBI

From 9to5Mac:

Police, consumer organizations and Internet security companies are warning about an increasing number of coronavirus scams, as the FBI says cybercrime reports are up 400% …

One scam is a text message claiming you’ve been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.

This one could easily fool people, as it mimics alerts sent out by contact tracing apps.

Source: Coronavirus scams on the increase, warn police and FBI – 9to5Mac

Horrible, be careful out there.

Mobile Security

Suedo reveals which of your apps are sharing too much data

From Fast Company:

After I installed Seudo, the app claimed that TikTok was gathering minute-by-minute details on my network connection, which could help the social media app infer some form of location information. McDonald’s, meanwhile, appeared to be gathering all kinds of device data for tracking purposes, and several other apps, including Pandora and photo editor Lensa, were contacting Facebook for no clear reason.

Source: Suedo reveals which of your apps are sharing too much data

If it is “free” then you are the product.

Surprising and frightening how the apps on our phones are spying on us. Even more disconcerting is how the buyers of this data use it with advanced algorithms and AI to determine all kinds of things about us. For example your income, your political affiliation whether you are pregnant and your sexual orientation. Are you Okay with that?

Future Tech General Hardware Mobile

Oh Yeah, It’s a Phone Too

iphone (2)One of the fundamental changes that digital technology has produced is so subtle we often don’t even acknowledge it yet it is so substantial that it has altered everything.

Once the basic capacity is in place a digital device can do many many that is to say many tasks. The most obvious example is a modern cell phone.

A typical cell phone has both a still camera and a video camera, plus it is an answering machine, an e-mail device not to mention text messages and photo sharing, a social media connection and a web browser. It is a calculator, a pocket watch, a flashlight, an alarm clock and a stop watch. It is a calendar an e-reader, a GPS, a map and a gaming device. You get the idea. The actual phone function of any new smart phone is almost an afterthought.

Just a few years ago all those devices (if they existed at all) would have been separate purpose built expensive machines. Now we get them as part of our cell phone at essentially no cost with thousands of other options available at the App store.

Currently there are numerous medical devices that plug into a smart phone that are being marketed to physicians. A dental ultrasonic diagnostic device called S-Ray is under development that would attach to a smart phone and could produce a digital impression as well as diagnose periodontal pockets and interproximal decay.

Why not? Today’s smart phone has far more computing power than the old desktops we first plugged x-ray sensors into back in the 90s. And a smart phone is connected to the world so data can easily be sent to the cloud for storage or analysis. And of course a smart phone is far less expensive than a purpose built digital impression box and you can use the phone for all the other things mentioned above.

Mobile Security

Hundreds of millions of Android phone cameras can be hijacked by spyware

From Tom’s Guide:

Rogue Android apps can hijack the default camera apps on Google and Samsung smartphones, and probably the camera apps on many other brands of Android phones, to take photos and record video and audio without the device users’ permission.

Source: Hundreds of millions of Android phone cameras can be hijacked by spyware | Tom’s Guide

This sounds pretty scary until you read the article and find that Samsung and Google have fixed the problem with their devices. Never the less it is good to know and a reminder that the wonders of the Internet are fraught with security issues.

Health Care Politics Mobile Security

New bill to plug up HIPAA app gaps


PRIVACY BILL PICKS UP WHAT HIPAA LEAVES OUT—Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) are collaborating on a bill that would direct HHS Secretary Alex Azar to come up with regulations for health technology, including for apps, wearables and direct-to-consumer genetic tests. The bill directs HHS to consult with the FTC and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, and to produce the regulations within six months of enactment.

Source: New bill to plug up HIPAA gaps – POLITICO

Apps, especially free apps, are notorious for collecting and then selling personal data. I wish I trusted the bureaucracy more to actually help with the problem. Never the less healthcare apps have tremendous potential however both privacy (selling your data) and security (having your data stolen) are an issue.

Future Tech Internet Management Mobile Security

HHS guidance clarifies HIPAA liability with use of 3rd-party health apps

From FierceHealthcare:

The Trump administration is pushing the healthcare industry to be a part of the smartphone economy, but there has been some confusion about whether healthcare providers and their health IT vendors would be held accountable for how patients use their health data.

To address this, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Civil Rights (OCR) released guidance to answer common questions about the use of third-party apps under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Two recently proposed interoperability rules from HHS call for the industry to adopt standardized application programming interfaces (APIs) so patients can access their health data using smartphone apps…

…“Once the patient downloads their data, their data is their responsibility. Once they download their information to an app then they need to sort out the secondary use issues,” Rucker said during the meeting. “The liability for stewardship of the data ends once the patient downloads it.”

Source: HHS guidance clarifies HIPAA liability with use of 3rd-party health apps | FierceHealthcare

Three important Issues from the linked article above.

There is a great deal of interest in making healthcare data available online using smartphone apps. There is a great potential for this to improve the human condition. BUT…

People are afraid to share personal healthcare info for security reasons. Too many hackers. This leads to number three.

HIPAA rules provide significant punitive penalties for healthcare entities who allow patient data to be seen by others. App makers are afraid to access patient data if it means they could be liable for millions in HIPAA fines.


General Internet Management Mobile

What patients think about digital medicine

Follow the link for a very interesting survey.

Accenture Survey

The number one digital item patients like is a practice web page. Hmmm.



Digital Marketing Management Mobile

E-services work

…the study revealed that for those who have adopted a PRM solution, those challenges were addressed. Most organizations saw significant reductions in no-shows and savings of staff time, rather than higher costs or use of staff time.

Source: State of PRM Report from Solutionreach Reveals Four Key Trends | Business Wire

The link goes to an article from Solution Reach which includes data that patient relationship management systems (PRM), such as automatic text message reminders work. That is they decrease no shows, improve patient relations and reduce staff time which means they reduce costs.

Creating digital records is an important first step however to get real value from technology the dental office needs to leverage the digital data. One of the best and easiest ways to do this is to automate tasks such as calling to confirm an appointment.

Diagnostics Mobile

Apple Watch ‘prolonged my life’ by spotting deadly heart illness just days after new ECG feature launched,

Apple Watch ‘prolonged my life’ by spotting deadly heart illness just days after new ECG feature launched,

Source: Apple Watch ‘prolonged my life’ by spotting deadly heart illness just days after new ECG feature launched, gadget owner reports