Dentists are acquiring technology at unprecedented rates for a number of very good reasons. Primary drivers are the rate advancement of technology itself, coupled with meaningful value that can be delivered relative to legacy technology. Larry Emmott makes the value of training crystal clear in his Ten Most Common Mistakes Dentists Make Using Technology.
I would like to add a few comments about how my practice chooses and finances new technology. Every year we establish a budget of somewhere in the neighborhood of $100,000+. Our 4 doctors research the possibilities throughout the first 6 months of the year, paying close attention to which technologies will give us the biggest bang (= sales) for the buck, coupled with value to patient care. With connected technologies we favor open source, to avoid the high cost of proprietary closed systems. For example we reviewed and had demos of digital scanning systems and milling units last year and chose 3M’s scanner coupled with Glidewell’s milling unit. For a huge discount off the cost of the “industry leader” we have been able to integrate wonderful same day crown technology.
In order to maintain strong financial control we always finance technology over 3 years – no matter what the cost. For instance Carestream offered an amazing deal to upgrade our CS9000 CT scanner to the CS9300 near year’s end. We chose to do that deal with financing at 2.49% payable over 3 years.
Considering how fast technology changes (especially computers and servers) having loans pay out every year in a 3 year cycle keeps us agile and allows us to change out or acquire new technology in a timely and affordable manner. If we can’t pay off technology in 3 years we don’t buy it.
And of course we do extensive training to avoid the mistakes on Larry’s list.
What are your thoughts on technology acquisition, training, and finance?
The Ten Most Common Mistakes Dentists Make Using Technology
- No training
- No follow up training
- Dentist doesn’t get training
- No training on updates
- Not enough training
- Lack of training
- Little training
- Self training
- Poor training
- Won’t pay for training
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Last modified: March 7, 2019