There are six distinct areas that the doctor and staff will need to understand in order to use practice management software effectively. These are:
- General use of the software: This would include how to open it, how to find a patient, how to find a specific procedure or appointment.
- Charting: That is entering treatment, creating treatment plans and entering procedure notes. Charting also includes linking to diagnostic aids like radiographs, photos and perio pocket charting.
- Finance: This would include making an estimate, Creating and sending insurance claims. Billing. Entering payments.
- Scheduling: Creating new appointments, finding existing appointments.
- Communications: Maintaining patient contact and insurance information. Sending correspondence, insurance, re-call and confirmations.
- Administration: Compiling numbers running reports and maintaining security.
Dentist: The dentist needs to concentrate on items 1,2 and 6. He/she must be able to launch the software, find a patient record or appointment and to enter treatment if needed. However the doctor’s primary duty is to maintain the dental record and to manage the practice. For that reason the dentist needs to be able to find a specific procedure in the patient chart then retrieve and edit existing procedure notes or enter new notes. The dentist needs to be able to run financial reports, understand what they mean and create custom reports. The dentist also needs to understand and administer the security features of the software such as passwords.
The rest of the team in part two.