Cloud is a technology through which information or data is stored through a network of computer resources, without the active management of the user. The computer network is spread over multiple locations and is used by numerous organizations to form a ‘hybrid cloud.’ This technology is most widely used in file storage, as it allows for high-speed access and restoration of files with reduced cost and added security. It is an excellent replacement for a back-up system since you no longer need to store and retrieve files manually. One can now have both online and offline methods of storing data with seemingly inexhaustible storage. Usage of Cloud technology in modern dentistry will lead to interoperability of software and hardware, which will maximize efficiency and minimize time duration.
Cloud Software and Dentistry
When it comes to healthcare services, Cloud technology has IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service). It provides services to maintain an IT infrastructure without the hassle of looking after the cost and labour of managing and maintaining it. Moving from a paper-based to a digital storage system will allow extensive scale management of data with speed, efficiency, and accuracy. With the dizzying advances in the healthcare field, from online shipping of resin crown to systems like radiovisiography, there is a need to update our administrative policy as well. Cloud services provide the answer to a lot of troubles faced in the day-to-day management of dental hospitals. The use of digital impressions and CAD/CAM technology has accelerated the leap towards a more digitized form of dentistry. But radiography and dental administration still falls short of the required integration, and cause a disparity in software and hardware management. The security offered by Cloud Technology is unbeatable, as it provides off-site storage as well sites backed by security protocols, as well as reducing IT costs. It allows for seamless coordination of data and digital scans, which leads to the handling of the data on a much better scale.
Cloud and Data Sharing
Cloud offers the services of data storage and sharing, which helps in the exchange of digital x-rays, i.e. radiographs, which was previously a problem. Cloud ensures the sharing of high-quality images with security. It allows dentists and orthodontists to consult each other to get a second opinion, which ensures that the patient receives the best possible services. Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) is a secure, network communications protocol. It allows for the sharing of radiograph files, which gives high-quality images as well as the ability to view and enhance the image as required. Dental practices that are looking to upgrade their file-sharing systems should look towards DICOM and CBCT services. Data Sharing can also bolster research, as large files of user demographic and clinical data to conduct statistical research which would drive innovation. Cloud service also protects the patient’s data, as the records and files are secure from fire or flood, and can be easily retrieved.
Cloud and Dental Administration
Use of cloud technology has revolutionized various sectors of Information Technology like financial, retail, etc. Expansion of the same in dentistry will undoubtedly transform the healthcare field. Storage of patient files is an issue that is prevalent in dentistry. Administrative troubles arise in the upkeep and management of data when a different doctor accesses it for consultation. Use of Cloud will dispel all such concerns. It offers storage solutions that are not only compliant to HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) but also help in keeping files updates to ensure patient satisfaction. Any changes in a patient’s files will update in the Cloud file, which makes sure that the medical professional see the changes while reviewing the data. It helps to avoid miscommunication, which leads to lesser chances of human error. Keeping check of both hardware and software can be a hassle; however, Cloud technology needs no additional devices for the storage of data, and simply manages records in memory, thereby reducing costs.
Integration of Cloud Technology and Dentistry
Through the integration of hardware and software systems, dentists and orthodontists can now form better treatment plans through easy access and sharing of clinical data, which will further drive diagnostics and leads to better care of the patient. Sharing of high-quality images like intraoral and extraoral images, 2D and 3D radiographs will lead to quicker imports for faster, efficient assessment and treatment of the patient. Stored patient history reduces the time required to assess the patient, and reduce treatment duration. Technology is all about driving us towards a more efficient future and easing our day-to-day activities. Through the integration of Cloud and dentistry, time duration and cost will decrease and dental innovations would increase. It will increase accessibility, as dentists would now be able to access your files even on holidays, in case of emergencies. There will be the elimination of heavy-weight files and equipment required to store such data and will be replaced by lightweight chips or digital storage.
Cloud-based software will decrease the overall cost of data storage, as it offers all-inclusive services with a budgeted expense, which makes these services convenient and affordable for everyone. The security, comfort, and ease provided by Cloud make it incredibly appealing, and the medical field is heading clearly towards an integrated future of dentistry and Cloud technology.