If you are a dental specialist and have computers in your Practice and have an external IT person that looks after them, you need a HIPAA Business Associate Agreement (BAA) with them. I know you are squirming and wish this didn’t apply to you, but it’s pretty simple and clear that it does.
Many Practices now utilize Patient Education Application applications such as Dolphin Aquarium or IACT Case Presenter. In some cases these are integrated with the traditional in-house Practice Management Application (PM App) or Imaging App. The integration streamlines the workflow process.
Often the decision to change to a Cloud based Practice Management Application (PM App) is made without considering if you will need to change your Imaging Application. Perhaps you use Dolphin Imaging or Vistadent. Will your choice in PM App cause you abandon a tool you may like?
Cloud Practice Management Applications (PM Apps) rely on the Internet. No Internet = No PM App. This is the biggest worry of any Cloud user.
Ask yourself what the longest interruption in your Internet service has been? 5 minutes? An hour? A day or more? Could you run your Practice without your PM App that long? 5 minutes? Sure. An hour? Maybe. A Day or More? No way!
It’s not a question of “If your Internet Connection will go out”, but rather just when and for how long.
Makes you cringe doesn’t it. You need to prepare.
How fast does your Internet connection need to be?
If you have a Crappy Internet connection you can stop reading now and give up on the Cloud (until your Internet options improve). Any Cloud Practice Management App (PM App) needs a reliable Internet connection with decent speed.
This is the most important part of your Cloud adventure. You are about to make your Internet Connection business critical. Get this part wrong and you are going to suffer immensely. For that reason I’ve spent a fair bit of time below getting into the details (sorry about the length but I think it will be worth your time).
Data conversions are an ugly process. If you choose a Cloud Practice Management Application (PM App) from a new company, they have to reverse engineer your old Company’s data format, then smush it all around (technical term) into their own proprietary database format. Often there aren’t equivalent fields for some data, so it’s left behind. My experiences for data conversions have been “Someone always cries”.
The benefits of a Cloud Practice Management Application (PM App) can materialize in many different ways within your Practice. The various vendors will all promise some combination of these factors
Lower Costs – the first thing we think about and the primary motivator to consider the move to Cloud. Cost savings can come from: