By Steven Ury, DDS, Periodontist
Randy Nolf, DDS, Periodontist
Dentists and hygienists are using a simple to complete analytical software making discussions with the patients easier…making the progression to treatment compliance easier… and enabling a practice to substantially increase case acceptance for periodontal therapy. This technology makes available a single language, with everyone “on the same page”, to discuss periodontal disease, and the necessary treatment.
The software allows for thoughtful and readily understandable discussions with patients thus improving the progression to treatment acceptance through a path of least resistance.
Implementing innovative technology into the practice, using risk and disease severity health scores as clinical support, will no doubt increase patient compliance.
PreViser™ Corporation www.PreViser.com provides their web enabled Oral Health Information Suite (OHIS) software for free. The use of the technology provides three (3) numbers, or scores, indicating patients’ risk of future periodontal disease, existing disease state and their ongoing oral health stability. With these 3 scores, patients then have a clearer idea of the severity and comprehensiveness of their problems. In other words, they know how things are going.
A nice feature of the OHIS is that it allows practitioners to recalculate the risk scores, just as if the patients had completed the advised treatment. So, a patient can visualize what will happen without treatment compared to what will occur with the recommended care. That’s when the fun begins. These scores predict whether the treatment plan will be working. Outcomes are the key.
Dental practices are utilizing this powerful method to impact a patient’s decision to proceed with care for a lifetime of oral health. Case acceptance is markedly improved providing more treatment for periodontal disease by the dentists and hygienists including any necessary subsequent restorative care.
Why now? Well, there’s a new sheriff in town. Patients and practitioners, as well as insurance companies and employers, are relying less on subjective findings to determine if periodontal care is working. Welcome the new law of the land – objective findings derived by an analytical software. Practitioners are accurately communicating with patients about their risk of disease and the outcomes of treatment. Everyone’s “on the same page”. We’re talking Evidence Based Practice here; the integration of clinical expertise, patient values, and the best research evidence into the decision-making process for patient care.
Instead of dentists and hygienists potentially disconnecting on a diagnosis, a treatment plan or a prognosis, they can agree and provide an easy to use, objective and reproducible way to measure, understand and communicate patients’ risk and disease level as simple numeric scores.
People relate to scores and knowing their numbers gets them involved. Physicians supply blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes numbers to their patients to follow their progress. Now dental patients will know their periodontal disease scores and look for improvement in the numbers.
More and more dentists in the know are advocating the principles of a medical model of healthcare for dentistry. Less repair and more interception and prevention. Consider the PerioCentric™ practice, defined as a best practice in which treatment revolves around sound periodontal diagnosis and treatment, utilizing metrics to evaluate treatment outcome. It employs a simple step by step, reproducible, algorithmic approach to care we call the PerioBlueprint™.
When implemented it provides dental professionals the knowledge and tools to discover undiagnosed and untreated periodontal disease in an existing practice. The appropriate care for these conditions will result in improved health for patients as well as production and revenue for the dental practice that may prove to increase exponentially.
Dentistry is adjusting to a new paradigm that is better for patients by shifting focus away from procedures for repair of disease… to a model of interception and prevention of disease.
There is unprecedented demand for increased care for periodontal disease. The most recent data from the Center for Disease Control revealed that 47.2% of adult Americans exhibit periodontal disease and the disease increases to 70.1% of adults over 65 years. Contemporaneous insurance company data reports only about 7% obtain periodontal treatment…Only 7%.
Dentistry has a busyness problem. Nationally, approximately 1 in 3 dentists say they are not busy enough. Imagine the increase in production and revenue when discovering that perhaps 50% of patients require some form of periodontal care. And not just code 1110 “prophy” care – we’re talking anesthetized scaling/root planing, pocket reduction and tissue grafting surgery. LANAP, and more. Of course, when maintenance starts, using the obligatory code 4910 will result in more comprehensive visit than a code 1110 “cleaning” and thus, improve hygiene production.
We are in a time of transformational change in healthcare and tremendous opportunities for enhanced collaboration among healthcare providers exist. Dentists have a chance to fundamentally rethink their role within the healthcare system and take advantage of these new opportunities. It would not only help peck away at dentistry’s busyness problem but would also allow dentists to contribute much more significantly to whole-body health. And really, isn’t that what it’s all about.
About Dr. Ury
Dr. Steven R. Ury, Periodontist
Academic Faculty Director, The Synergy Academy
An entrepreneur at heart, Steve Ury altered his career from engineering to focus on the potential of the burgeoning dental industry. He earned a degree in dentistry, owned a general practice and then became a periodontist with an office in NY.
During his leadership of dental study groups and as past president of the largest periodontal organization in the northeast United States, Dr. Ury interacted with other dental professionals. He foresaw the changing landscape of periodontal care and referral.
As co-founder of PreViser Corporation, he witnessed the development of analytic software to help expose undiscovered periodontal disease. More disease revealed equates to more treatment rendered resulting in more healthy patients.
Lack of busyness is problematic in dental practices. Realizing periodontal disease concerns approximately 50% of the adult population but only about 7% have related care, he considered the possibilities. Dr. Ury believes that dentists could easily increase production and revenue by administrating in-office, non-surgical and basic surgical periodontal treatment.
About Dr. Nolf
Dr. Randy Nolf, Periodontist
Clinical Faculty Director, The Synergy Academy
As a periodontist, Randy Nolf has witnessed the changing dental industry as an opportunity is expanding for general dentists and specialists alike. Dr. Nolf believes that the same is true for dental education which is at the dawn of a major shift to less centralized, more affordable, and rapid practice adoption model of delivery.
He has continually been involved with teaching since he received his advanced certificate in Periodontology from Temple University in 1981. His outstanding credentials include a certificate from the gIDE Master Clinician program and as co-founder of the PreViser Corporation.
Dentistry is adjusting to a new paradigm, better for our patients by focus shifting away from repair to interception of disease. Interception as a treatment model is possible through sensitive artificial intelligence permeating into our practices. Randy is gratified to witness this evolution in part through software he created and now being adopted throughout the Us and UK.
Dr. Nolf has been an advocate of supporting general dentists with in-office training as well as on-site surgical procedures his entire career. 35 years integrated into dentists’ offices has led to a new system of training called “Synchronized Dental Learning™” facilitating rapid adoption of new surgical procedures into general practice.