You could say an IT system is not as fundamental to dentists as a dental chair is. And yet without a functional IT infrastructure, your dental practice’s ability to serve your patients becomes severely impaired. Lacking a solid IT system limits your staff’s productivity and compromises the security of your patients’ data.
As you prepare to start your dental practice, it is important to ensure you are setting up a solid IT infrastructure. Afterall, this will be the system that helps your dental practice succeed if providing the best possible patient experience. So, what exactly are the IT solutions you will need for your new dental practice?
A server is vital even when you have a small office. The server houses your software and applications, and some of your files, especially those that are not available in the cloud (i.e., large 3D images). These programs and files are all accessible through any computer connected to the server.
You may be wondering: why not just install the software and save your data on the office computer? That is because a server operating system tends to be more stable than that of a conventional computer. Additionally, if you have access to the server, you can obtain any data you need even without your staff’s assistance.
Cloud storage is one of the most secure and convenient ways to store data today. Users who have the right credentials can access the information you store on the cloud using any internet-capable device.
Needing to finish a report or two when you are not in the office? You can do so if your data is stored on the cloud. Your staff can do the same, which means you can collaborate and stay on top of your tasks even when one or all of you are away.
Even if your office is small, you may have to invest in several workstations. Procure the minimum number of machines you need and then just add more as needed.
Computers, however, do not come with a small price tag. To save money, you can ask your IT or managed services provider (MSP) about hardware-as-a-rental (HaaR). In this procurement model, your provider leases computers and other hardware to you for a fixed monthly fee. This spares you from having to spend on computer units you may not need and allows you to scale up or down according to your practice’s changing demands.
Wireless Internet (Wi-Fi)
With wireless access, you and your staff can connect online anywhere in your dental office. You need to ensure that coverage is uniform across the entire vicinity without any dead spot. If you are giving your patients Wi-Fi access, their connection must not interfere with your office network. Providing a solid experience across the board.
Needless to say, your office Wi-Fi will be configured differently from what you have at home. It is best to consult experts about factors like hardware, integration, and layout of the wireless network to ensure the best outcomes and avoid costly errors.
A cloud-based backup system is a necessary investment to prevent the loss of crucial information. In the event of fires, natural disasters, and other calamities that may destroy your office, workstations, and servers, the backup ensures that you can readily access your data and resume business as soon as possible. Your IT team or MSP can help you set up a system that automatically replicates and backs up your data for easy recovery in the future.
Just because your business is a dental office does not mean crooks are not interested in your data. Your patients leave sensitive information to your care that hackers may use for identity theft, credit card fraud, and other types of wrongdoing. And no, installing a firewall is not enough.
Network security is best left to the pros. Ask your IT professional for a HIPAA-compliant network security solution. Ideally, this should come with remote management and monitoring (RMM) that detects and blocks intrusions and irregularities in your network. This system also fixes issues automatically. To minimize internal security risks, you can ask your provider to train your staff in the latest network security protocols.
For dentists, setting up a working IT infrastructure means ensuring efficiency and productivity in the office and protecting patients from online wrongdoers. Start building your IT system by reaching out to us today!