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Discover how Lighthouse 360 helps thousands of dental practices run better than ever.EXPLORE THE MAP
Discover how Lighthouse 360 helps thousands of dental practices run better than ever.EXPLORE THE MAP
Find out how Lighthouse 360 helps Elm Park Dental keep the schedule full.READ THE FULL CASE STUDY
Lighthouse 360 Helps Elm Park Dental Keep the Schedule Full
Elm Park Dental in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, is small but busy, with one full-time and one part-time dentist, one full-time and one part-time front desk employee and four hygienists. “We’re always looking for ways to communicate quickly and easily with our patients,” says Managing Partner Nancy Cooke. So when she learned about Lighthouse 360 two years ago, Cooke decided to give it a try. “The fact that email, text and phone can all be automated was what closed the deal for us,” Cooke says.
A Solution that Works in the Background
Prior to using Lighthouse 360, Elm Park Dental used phone calls and emails for confirmations and appointment reminders, which was often difficult to do in a timely fashion. “We called everyone two days prior to their appointment, but if it got really busy, the call might get bumped to [one day before] the appointment, which creates issues,” Cooke explains. Now, automated reminders are sent in the background, saving the staff at least an hour a day and getting more responses than phone calls. Automation allows for an extra reminder an hour or two before the appointment, which Cooke says patients really appreciate.
Lighthouse 360’s Recall feature saves even more time. “It automatically identifies who needs to be contacted and generates reminder emails that they’re due or overdue for an appointment,” Cooke explains. “We used to do all that manually; now it all happens in the background and we just do the follow-up.” Automated recall helps the practice boost retention—vitally important in today’s environment.
Cooke also loves being able to text patients right from the Lighthouse portal. Before Lighthouse 360, staffers would sometimes text patients using their own phones, but there was no organized texting system. “We knew texting was the direction we wanted to go in,” says Cooke, adding that patients “have responded really well.”
Staying Connected with Patients Through the Pandemic
“Lighthouse has been ahead of the curve in [developing] new products and getting them implemented quickly,” says Cooke, citing the Virtual Waiting Room features that have helped Elm Park Dental see patients safely during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Having cloud-based patient communication software had an unexpected benefit during COVID-19. “The same day we had to shut down due to the pandemic, we also had a power outage,” Cooke recalls. “The only way I could find out which patients to contact was to use Lighthouse online at home. The remote connection was extremely useful!” Because she can access Lighthouse remotely, Cooke still works from home even though the clinic has fully reopened; this reduces the number of people in the office and enhances patient safety.
The pandemic has highlighted the value of the wide range of communication options Lighthouse 360 provides. At a time when patient visits may be less frequent, “having an additional way to communicate and keep patients engaged with the clinic has been great,” says Cooke.
Elm Park Dental uses Dentrix to manage patient and appointment information, and Cooke says that Lighthouse 360 works seamlessly with that platform. “Information flows nicely between the two [apps], which has been very helpful,” she says. “When someone texts to confirm, it confirms [the appointment] in our calendar.”
Cooke says the Lighthouse 360 system is very user-friendly. “Staff have come and go, and we’ve had to train new people [on the software], but it’s been easy because Lighthouse is so intuitive.” When the staff needs assistance, Lighthouse customer service is responsive and helpful.
Taking full advantage of Lighthouse 360’s automation tools, Elm Park Dental also relies on the daily task list to remind them what to follow up on each morning, and the Fill-in feature to automatically fill last-minute cancelled appointments. Saving time, making the practice more efficient, and keeping the schedule full—Lighthouse 360 is the solution Elm Park Dental was looking for.
Client Name: Nancy Cooke
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Find out how Canyon Creek Dental Clinic boosts efficiency with Lighthouse 360.READ THE FULL CASE STUDY
Canyon Creek Dental Clinic Boosts Efficiency With Lighthouse 360
Patient communication software wasn’t a new concept for Canyon Creek Dental Clinic in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. However, the practice’s existing PCS required a lot of time-consuming manual entry. “We needed something that would work faster,” says Office Manager Monica van Roijen. “When we looked at what [Lighthouse 360] could do, it just made sense.”
The four-dentist practice, which sees some 30 to 35 patients per day, implemented Lighthouse 360 in March 2020, and immediately began seeing positive results.
Saving Time With Automation
Prior to Lighthouse 360, Canyon Creek’s four front desk employees spent hours a day sorting through data and pulling up patients lists to find canceled appointments or patients who were due for a recall.
“We would go into Dentrix, print out reports and go through them to find the patients and contact them,” van Roijen recalls.
Now, patients are contacted automatically, and Lighthouse 360 automatically receives notice of confirmations or cancellations. Van Roijen estimates Lighthouse 360 has shaved 10 to 20 hours per week from their formerly time-consuming routine.
The Recall feature, which automatically contact patients due for an appointment, is one of van Roijen’s favorites. “One thing I really like about the program is that if patients haven’t been seen for 18 months and we’ve contacted them for one last try, we get a notice saying this patient hasn’t [responded] so we can inactivate them instead of going through all our [data] to find them.”
Speedy Communications Spell Cost Savings
Canyon Creek Dental Clinic launched Lighthouse 360 right around the time COVID-19 hit. Thanks to the software’s email features, the staff was able to easily notify patients of the practice’s new safety protocols. “Contacting all our patients would have been really [time-consuming] with Dentrix, but with Lighthouse, we were able to contact everybody quickly,” recalls van Roijen.
On a lighter note, the team also used Lighthouse 360’s email feature to alert patients they were holding a Christmas raffle. At a time when fewer patients were in the office, “Lighthouse gave us the opportunity to get all of our patients involved,” van Roijen says.
Lighthouse 360’s two-way texting and Virtual Waiting Room features have also been helpful during the pandemic. “The night before an appointment, we send out a notice asking the patient to self-isolate and contact the office when they arrive,” van Roijen explains. “We can text [back and forth] and either tell them to come in or have them wait outside until the treatment area is cleaned and ready for them.”
One benefit of Lighthouse 360 came as a pleasant surprise. “We used to send out reminder cards for appointments and recalls. Now we don’t have to. That’s a really big cost saver,” says van Roijen.
With less than a year of using Lighthouse 360 under their belts, Van Roijen’s team is still learning how to get the most from the software. But already, she says, “It’s saved a lot of time compared to doing things hands-on and allows us to respond to patients really quickly.” That’s something to smile about.
Client Name: Monica van Roijen
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Learn how Atikokan Family Dental Centre makes a small practice more efficient thanks to Lighthouse 360.READ THE FULL CASE STUDY
Atikokan Family Dental Centre: Making a Small Practice More Efficient
When Eryn McArthur began manning the front desk at Atikokan Family Dental Centre in 2020, she had never worked in a dental office before. The Atikokan, Ontario, Canada, dental practice has one dentist, one hygienist, and just one front desk employee—Eryn—with all the responsibility for scheduling and patient communication on her shoulders.
Luckily, Eryn had a powerful ally on her side: Lighthouse 360. Atikokan Family Dental Centre had implemented the patient communication software shortly before she was hired.
Patient Communication Made Easy
When she first started working at Atikokan Family Dental Centre, Eryn spent almost her entire day calling patients. “I’d pretty much be on the phone from when the office opened to when it closed,” she recalls. As she learned how to use Lighthouse 360, she was able to automate most of that work. “Now I make maybe three, four or five phone calls a day.” Instead, Lighthouse 360 automatically sends out confirmation and reminder notices.
Lighthouse 360 “makes communicating with patients communication super easy,” says Eryn. “As soon as I make the appointment, the patient gets a message sent directly to their cell phone within five minutes, so they have the information [at hand].” She also loves the Recall feature that automatically contacts patients who need to make an appointment, ensuring no one slips through the cracks.
Help With Daily Tasks
Running a dental office solo is no easy task, but Eryn can rely on Lighthouse 360 to help her stay on top of daily duties. For example, when patients come in for appointments, the software reminds Eryn to get their cell phone number, email address and other contact information if it’s not already in the system.
Eryn also loves how Lighthouse 360 seamlessly integrates with Dentrix. “That’s helped a lot with communication between me, the dentist and the hygienist,” she says. “It’s helped me navigate making appointments, changing files, adding or changing insurance and doing family files.”
No longer is Eryn spending all day with the phone to her ear. Now, her only phone calls are to older patients who don’t use text messaging. “Having everything simplified with Lighthouse makes my life so much easier!”
Client Name: Eryn McArthur
Location: Atikokan, Ontario, Canada
Find out how Winburn Orthodontics saves time and money with Lighthouse 360.READ THE FULL CASE STUDY
Beyond the Phone Call
The world was changing, but Winburn Orthodontics’ patient communication system wasn’t keeping up. Administrative Assistant Shauna Cornwall was frustrated by a system that required calling patients with appointment reminders. “People don’t really answer phone calls anymore,” she explains.
Being able to text reminders instead of calling would be more efficient and effective, Shauna knew. She also wanted to text back-and-forth with patients “so I could ask for things I need, like for them to bring in forms.”
Shauna wasn’t the only one who was unhappy with Winburn Orthodontics’ patient communication software. “Patients were always complaining that half the voice mail was cut off, so they weren’t getting the full message, or if they [followed the prompts] to press a number, the message just kept repeating,” she recalls.
The Lighthouse Solution
Seeking a better solution, Shauna booked a free demonstration with Lighthouse 360. “I was immediately sold on its capabilities,” she recalls.
Getting Winburn Orthodontics set up with Lighthouse 360 was easy. “I had a few questions at the beginning, so I just called the 800 number,” Shauna says. “The [Lighthouse team] was so helpful and showed me how to handle everything.”
Since implementing Lighthouse 360 in early 2020, “I have so much more time!” Shauna marvels. “I’m saving extra steps; I don’t have to go into individual patient charts or email myself anymore. I can just link to our website to send stuff out.”
Saving Time, Saving Money
In addition to saving time, Winburn Orthodontics is also saving money. Thanks to Lighthouse 360, they haven’t needed to hire another front desk employee to handle screening calls and recalls.
The coronavirus pandemic has made it more important than ever for dental practices to communicate with patients. Lighthouse 360 proved invaluable when Winburn Orthodontics’ office had to shut down temporarily in March 2020.
“I was able to instantly send an email explaining the situation to all the patients, instead of going patient by patient,” Shauna says. When the office reopened in May, she relied on two-way texting to communicate with patients waiting in their cars for appointments.
Today business at Winburn Orthodontics is back at 100%, and Lighthouse 360 is helping the staff handle the workload with ease.
Client Name: Shauna Cornwall
Location: Brandon, Manitoba