Periodontics has inevitably changed over the past few years. The addition of the 2018 AAP classification system on staging and grading has significantly increased the amount of clinical documentation required to be collected and tracked. Along with the classification changes, came the additional safety measures put into place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The result; we now have more documentation to manage, store, retrieve, and articulate during patient consults and correspondence with colleagues.
Will all the information that is being collected, is your practice running as efficiently as you want for the coming new year?
Does your clinical documentation reflect the way in which you physically practice? Are you practicing at the highest level of clinical care possible? Does your clinical documentation reflect this invaluable information and level of detail that you are actively producing? Are your records in alignment with the way in which you truly practice? If not, there can be consequences that negatively impact your practice.
Are your practice ideals always a work in progress? With the reality of life constraints and time management, you chose the priorities that will impact a positive outcome.
Think about it, what exactly holds you back from having the ideal practice that we dream of? Staff? Finances? Time?
Each improvement that is put off will inevitably need to be faced, just make sure that the battles you choose to confront are the ones getting you the most “prolific quality output” (*Brendan Burchard). In other words, the best use of your time.
Truthfully, change is hard.
Does your team reinforce your expertise, style, and practice culture you desire in how you approach patient care? Is your team a reflection of your values? Are you doing all the work yourself?
Not including the team can be not only taxing for you, the doctor, but it leaves them feeling less valued in their service to you and your patients. Some tasks may seem like they are too difficult for the staff to achieve, but with the right tools and techniques, anyone can learn to participate the right way that is beneficial for the practice.
The number one stumbling block for progress is being unmotivated towards implementation. If you “consider” change important, then reserve time for it.
Take steps each week to move toward the goals you really want until you have the ultimate best solution in place. You do not have to dive into efficiency headfirst, chose one thing each week to move you in the right direction. Adjust your plan as you learn more about the available options.
In the field of Periodontics, we are taught to always put the patient first. The most important thing to remember -this is your practice and the way you practice will ultimately affect you, your health, and the ones you most care about. Setting personal goals and expecting a higher standard is not selfishness, rather a necessity in order to maintain the best care for not only your patients and colleagues but most importantly for the one driving the practice, You.
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