Seb Evans (SE): Why did you move to Ismile?
Stephen Nulty (SN): There were two companies that we were looking at, one of which was Ismile. Ultimately the deciding factor was that I phoned Ismile on Saturday with regards to an advert I’d seen and got through to one of the owners of the company. He not only answered the phone on a Saturday, he spent quite a long time explaining the system and how it can be modified, whilst in the middle of putting a bed together for his child!
What it made me realise was that the back-up service and the availability was fantastic.
SE: Did you have any software installed beforehand?
SN: No, we went digital years ago for radiography. We were looking at another company for our practice management software who supplied our radiography software and offered us a package deal. With Ismile the whole package was better with all the latest software and 20-odd inch screens.
Ismile can tailor the software to your own needs. For example, we’ve got two surgeries in two different locations, one in Ramsbottom, one in Tottington, we’ve interlinked both services. Any patients can walk into either of our practices and all of the information is available at Ramsbottom or Tottington.
SE: How else does Ismile help?
SN: Patient confidentiality, everything’s encrypted, which is marvellous. We’ve always worried about patient confidentiality, it’s huge with the CQC now, with Ismile that’s well taken care of. Ismile backs everything up automatically using the cloud, it’s safer and less for us to do.
The IT guys Ismile used worked at weekends to do all the installation, we didn’t have to shut down the practice. The level of after care, everything from the moment we worked with them. It’s not always the cost of the system, it’s the cost of the business you lose as well when it’s installed. All that, Ismile made as smooth as possible.
We’ve gone totally paperless, we’ve got digipads for the patients to sign. Ismile includes a patient portal. So patients can go into the system themselves. They can do it from home, on the phone etc and change all their details, their medical history before they get to the practice. When they come in we give the patient a pad, ask them to check thier medical history. So it can be timesaving.
When a patient comes into the waiting room, they’re logged into Ismile. At reception they sign to say everything is up to date etc. On my computer in the surgery it shows on my screen the patient has arrived. The patient management system will show you the length of time people are waiting. It can show they’ve arrived at the surgery, they’ve signed up at reception, when they’re in surgery and in the chair, when they’ve left to go to reception and when they’ve left the building. It’s amazing. It sounds small, but a lot of thought has gone into this system.
Recalls and failed appointments, Ismile contacts the patient by email, text message, etc you can make that choice yourself. If a patient misses a check-up, the system can contact them until they reply to make an appointment.
SE: How have the staff taken to it, is the software easy to use?
SN: Great, it’s not a bad system at all. We’ve modified the system too. Because of the interaction between Ismile’s IT people, the after sales service and ourselves, we can call up and speak to them. We can continue altering the system and updating it.
All of the features we can alter ourselves or they can do it for us. You can tailor make the system to meet your own needs. It’s a bespoke system, but it’s a user-friendly system.
SE: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
SN: There’s never a glitch or error with Ismile, and if there is, I have Ismile’s numbers.
Why did we choose Ismile? The other major competitors, the cost is huge compared to Ismile. Ismile is far more cost effective than any other system on the market at the moment.
They’re evolving all the time. All the time their aim is to be better than the competition. The more people who know how good they are and use Ismile, the better dentists will be.
I’d happily recommend it to anybody. From all the staff at both practices, a big thanks to Ismile.
For further information on Ismile practice management software, call 0845 468 1287 or visit ismiledental.co.uk.
Dr Stephen Nulty is the practice principal of Tottington and Ramsbottom dental surgeries and qualified from Manchester University as a dental surgeon. He served on the local dental committee for many years.