Your most strategic capital investment write-offs are in the cloud

It’s the time of year to think about taxes, and how do not pay as much for 2022. Planning your investments this year, as you move from a human workflow to a fully digital transformation of your office with front and back office automation, will help you do what you do best: dentistry. Yes, I said it. The all-digital transformation of your dental practice is underway as you constantly move from analog to all-digital to make your practice more productive.

The cloud has become big in dental practices over the past decade, but did you know that tax code 179 not only applies to equipment and hardware, but also cloud-based software and SaaS investments? With advances in technology, software is an integral part of many products, both for dental and administrative purposes.

Sorting through the vast amount of software available to find what’s right for your office is the hardest part. To start, you can try Capterra to find, sort and filter available dental software to see which products might best meet your needs by type, price and product. Talk to an expert if you want even more information on choosing software.

You might hear a new term, Software as a Medical Device (SaMD), which is just software to run the devices in your dental practice. (Is that another way of saying the Internet of Things?) Its official definition is “software intended for use for one or more medical purposes that performs those functions without being part of a physical medical device.” Two other types of software also exist. One is software embedded in a dental/medical device. Another is software used to keep equipment up to date, just like you do with printer software.

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Many software purchases come with a limited-term contract, in which you may or may not own the data. Make sure you own your own data. When reviewing these cloud software contracts, you’ll want to consider a variety of factors. What is the software for and how is it used? How often is it updated? Is there a service contract or contractual term for using the software? Are updates paid or free? Do your due diligence, as you would with any dental product.

Other considerations include questions such as: is the software built into a device, with your cloud access rights, or are there standard software license fees that include periodic storage on your own? storage systems? Does the software integrate with your other systems? Is software training for you and your staff part of the service contract? Finally, it should always be an end date for any software contract, as well as defined security methods for storing or uploading data to be retrieved. The confidentiality and security of your data must be ensured. More on this later in this article.

In my opinion, here are the top five cloud-based technology investments to consider this year to automate the necessary paperwork and daily IT tasks for the dental practice that we all love to hate.

1. Front office automation: appointments, reminders and calendar filling for Dentrix users

Lighthouse 360

If you have ever come home thinking that your staff was earning more than you that day, then this is the software to boost your productivity. There is no need to charge the receipt of reminder visits, as this program automatically contacts patients for this service and also sends appointment reminders with confirmations to your office. You can opt for reminder messaging or cancellation fillers to fill in the gaps of last-minute schedule changes. This can also be used in multiple places.

2. Front office automation for EagleSoft users


Similar to Lighthouse for EagleSoft users, this front desk automation software offers many of the same features as above, including portability with an internet connection. With this cloud-based system, you can manage multiple types of practice data and have it all in one place. It’s an easy-to-use program, with dashboards to assess your performance, your patients’ needs, and a way to match them to maximize productivity with chair time.

3. Dental inventory

dental software

If you’ve ever had a chairside patient and didn’t have the proper supplies or equipment, this program is for you. Although it works on cancellations and recalls, its main benefit is managing your dental inventory and supplies, buying the right product, and making sure it’s on hand when you need it.

Dentsoftware is both dental inventory management and organizational management software. While it can work for clinic management like appointments, reminders, and files, inventory management is its best feature, including tracking, orders, and vendor relations.

You can also customize your recurring orders. An inventory template can be uploaded on any device, such as a smartphone, to the cloud-based system. Financial tracking, auditing capabilities and communication about those inevitable supply shortages are included. Practicedent is a similar and good program for several dental offices.

4. Internal Dental Membership Program

Let’s face it, dental insurance is not like medical insurance, which pays for catastrophic events. Dental insurance is more of a discount program on your services, with third-party payers sharing data about it. I call it Groupon for dental care. Patients and dentists alike are discouraged by the hurdles associated with pre-approvals, claims and reimbursements.

Why not offer a discount program yourself to patients who don’t have insurance? Track them with Boomcloud. With this program, you can increase the portion of your practice that is fee-for-service and recruit enough patients to generate stable revenue for your practice.

This service offers a cloud-based software program to create, organize, track and automate an internal membership program. Instead of constantly being moved in and out of an insurance company’s actuary-based plans, you can create a custom plan to enroll patients from your website.

Since many DSOs offer them, private practices can now compete for this service. This intuitive program tracks payments, organizes members, and tracks key performance indicators (KPIs) in an easy-to-use dashboard.

5. Back-office billing software

Vyne Trellis

Looking for reliability in your revenue stream? Vyne Trellis, a web-based dental billing platform, facilitates the vicissitudes of billing, including the secure exchange of encrypted health information and real-time determination of patient benefit coverage eligibility.

Remember that software and security issues go hand in hand. I appreciate black greenhouse to help you go beyond cybersecurity to protect your business from ransomware, track intrusions, and deal with any ransomware attack. I worry about ransomware because it can be both expensive and stop your practice from working. Prevention is therefore very important.

This group understands the world of dentistry and the need for privacy and security of our patient records, planning ways to avoid the ransomware attacks that are increasingly common in dentistry. While they’re not the local technician or one-stop-shop provider looking after your desktops, they work with you and your local IT department to make sure you always have cloud security and backups. , right where you need it, protecting your practice from these hackers. Hackers use the dark web to see private medical information about patients, so avoid this problem with prevention.

With these front and back office automations in the cloud and security, you can smile and do what you do best: dentistry. Instead of struggling with hefty billing and the vagaries of reimbursement for dental services or worrying about ransomware attacks, you can take control of your business with a cloud-based solution for your headaches. Plus, come tax time next year, you might have more to smile about for yourself and your patients. With these new software products, you’ll have more time to provide dental care, with less hassle and greater productivity.

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in the March 2022 print edition of Dental economy. Dentists in North America can take advantage of a free print subscription. Register here.