One of the foundations of health-care reform is moving from paper-based to digital storage systems. As technology progresses, it has become vital for dentists and orthodontists to move with the times. One clear byproduct of this is moving patient files to digital storage methods such as the cloud.
Although many acknowledge the wide reach of the cloud, as a dental professional, you should also understand what the cloud is, how it works, and realize the benefits and risks of using the cloud in your dental practice. A basic definition of the cloud is an Internet-based space where services store data. Being “in the cloud” means making the switch from storing data on hardware to storing it with a cloud-based service provider.
Why is this important to dentists and orthodontists? For the health-care sector, securing patient files is the primary function of data storage. Cloud services offer HIPAA-compliant data-storage solutions that are flexible and responsive to memory storage needs. Storing data in the cloud not only makes work easier for dentists and orthodontists, but it also makes treatment more reliable and effective for patients. Patients have responded positively to the implementation of cloud storage for their files so far. According to research from The Mount Sinai Medical Center, patients find cloud storage more effective and quicker than previous storage methods.
Dental technology: How the cloud is transforming dentistry by Daniel AbrahamIn the medical and dental professions, administrative issues occur when a patient’s file needs to be accessed by a different doctor or office and there is no way to ensure the file is up to date. With the cloud, you don’t have to worry about when a patient’s last check-up was, whether or not he or she has had a certain radiograph at a different office, or if your treatment will interfere with previous treatments. All changes made to files stored in the cloud are reflected among any people who access the file, which reduces the need for unnecessary administrative hassle.