The Dental House

The Dental House is a leading regional dental practice caring for both private and NHS patients alike.  Based in Liverpool, its Clinical Director, Dr Stuart Garton has combined the latest in dental technology, customer service expertise and best in class behind the scenes practice support through his recruitment of over 30 dedicated members of staff to provide the highest levels of customer care experience for every patient.

The Challenge

A core value at The Dental House has been to invest in the community, including to support and develop dental healthcare professionals across the region.  For the last few years, they have run regular study clubs free of charge to local clinicians.

These sessions have a simple aim, to share knowledge and best practice expertise of what is changing in dentistry and to help continually raise standards, quality and performance in the sector. This can range from discussing new technologies, products, techniques and approaches within the dental profession through to wider practice areas including the soft skills of maintaining customer relationships and the techniques for delivering outstanding empathy, including understanding how to help relieve the anxiety and stress some patients may experience.

With the introduction of self-isolation rules as part of the UK’s combat against the Coronavirus pandemic during the spring of 2020, the lead clinicians faced a key dilemma for the Practice.  How could training and knowledge transfer continue to be provided to other dental professionals when such sessions could risk spreading infection and were not classed as essential?

The Dental House needed to find a way to continue to support these key training events and the team didn’t want to accept that their community support project would be put on hold due to the restrictions of social distancing. In fact, more than ever they wanted to keep in contact with the dental community during these challenging times!

Stuart Garton states:

“To run an effective dental surgery you need to offer more than twice a year check-ups and hygienist appointments. It is about making sure dental procedures are not too invasive. Dentists need to be experienced to work and deliver expert dental care quickly, and this needs to be offered to patients in a stress-free environment. To achieve this, it is essential for those involved in delivering dental care to keep on top of the latest procedures.”

Stuart explained that this approach helps maintain performance and standards across the board:

“Prevention is always better than cure, and the dental practice that identifies and resolves a patient’s needs before they escalate into a serious problem, will typically have a higher referral rate, and be able to service more patients in any given period”.

The Solution

Given The Dental House is committed to a community development programme, and given the importance of protecting and supporting the UK’s health sector workers, Nowcomm decided to offer free installation, training and ongoing support of a video conferencing solution.  The service deployed allows the dental experts to “virtually host” the previously “in the dentist’s’ chair” events via a secure video conferencing bridge based on a Cisco Webex platform. Training on how to get the most out of Webex was also delivered via the Nowcomm team. This helped the Practice staff quickly become familiar and confident with how to use the new video collaboration technology to deliver the dentistry training sessions.

The Nowcomm team included guidance on how to make the event more natural and interactive, including the use of features inbuilt around the video screen; such as instant chat messages to the presenter and hand raising flags from the audience to the presenter to ask questions.  Hosts and presenters were also trained on features including the ability to share rich media content to the attendees, such as pictures, images and video (examples could include high resolution images of technology devices, dental x-rays, and actual surgery clips). By adopting these capabilities through a secure video communication service from Nowcomm, an experience as close to the face to face event was achieved.

Collaboration WebEx becomes an online dental event success

A delighted Stuart commented: “The results speak for themselves. We achieved 160 attendees from the dental sector on the day of our virtual dental training event.  It is amazing to think that this is almost 100 more than we have previously been able to physically host due to the restrictions on room sizes within the practice itself. In addition, we also contacted another 90 healthcare professionals who could not attend at the original time but had registered. Nowcomm helped show our team how to record the session, allowing us to be able to send this out to both attendees and non-attendees. The Dental House is now looking at expanding our video delivery capability after the Coronavirus lockdown as it has been a huge success on every level!” Richard McLoughlin, a Nowcomm co-founder, concluded: “Video technology is a game changer across all industries and sectors both in normal circumstances and in these unique times. The key elements for successful adoption of video solutions are to make the service extremely easy to use from any device, to have the service backed by excellent customer care and to deliver video services using highly secure platforms, such as Webex. The Dental House staff are on the front line every day as they care for the public. Nowcomm are delighted that the use of our secure cloud technology has helped them continue to deliver their key health services to the general public.”

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