April 21, 2020
Tracey Hendler for Corus Orthodontists
As social isolation and working from home practices continue, we have shifted our workforce from an in-office model to one that is entirely remote. While this sudden and unexpected change has been jarring, we are grateful for the amazing technological tools at our disposal to help manage our patients and teams through this crisis.
Here is a list of some tools that have helped us to effectively manage our patients and teams during Covid-19:
Communication with our Teams
- Zoom– Almost overnight, Zoom meetings became the norm in many industries to help people communicate. You have likely tried it out with your family, friends, and maybe also your team. Instead of having our “morning huddle” in the office, we have a morning Zoom meeting on a daily basis. This helps keep everyone accountable and is a great way to keep the team on track. We suggest purchasing at least 1-2 premium accounts so your team can host meetings over 40 minutes with multiple participants.
- WhatApp, Slack– Our team uses these tools to communicate on a constant basis. It is a quick way to get in touch with people and disseminate useful information to the whole group in a timely fashion.
- Tracking Sheets– As we continue to support and manage our remote workforce, we wanted to find ways to keep our teams time effective. We have created tracking sheets that are filled out on a daily basis and given to the doctor or manager weekly to track ongoing projects, problems encountered, suggested solutions, and suggestions for future projects. We have found this to be helpful in keeping team members on track and inform doctors/managers on resource availability. An example of a tracking sheet can be provided upon request.
- Asana– There are a variety of organization platforms available, but our team largely uses Asana. We have created a new “Covid-19” heading and all of our new protocols, communications, and any other projects fall under this sub-heading. It is easily accessible to all team members by internet and there is a user-friendly phone app.
Communication with Patients
- Doxy.me– In order to facilitate video calls with patients in a secure and efficient way we have been using the Doxy.me platform. It enables us to run multiple “chairs” at one time; with chairside assistants or hygienists running one “chair” and treatment coordinators running the other. For more information on how we are using doxy.me please check out our previous blog here.
- Virtual photo check ups- Though the video chats are helpful to walk patients through certain issues, we have found that it is easier and clearer to visualize the teeth from photos rather than video due to improved resolution of the image. We have been routinely instructing our patients to take extraoral and intraoral photos of their teeth so we can assess any comfort issues they are having, as well as their bite. An example of how we instruct our patients to take photos can be found here.
- Social media– We can all agree that way more time is being spent on our devices than ever before! Corus is using our practice social media platforms as a source of communication and information for our patients and practices. This includes regular updates about the office closure, FAQ, and also videos on comfort issues that patients may be experiencing (ex. how to manage a broken bracket at home). If a patient contacts us with one of these issues, we can easily direct them to our social media videos and can offer phone, video chat or email support to help them get comfortable.