St. Joseph Dental Clinic Transitions to Electronic Medical Record
Dental resident Jowhar Brown discusses an X-ray with Dr. Larry Trubilla at the dental clinic at St. Joseph’s Downtown Campus.
The July 7 implementation of an electronic medical record (EMR) system has gone a long way toward streamlining patient processes at the dental clinic on St. Joseph’s Downtown Campus.
“We can check insurance, estimate costs and schedule the next appointment right in the room with our patients,” says Michelle Mountz, practice site manager. Previously this was a multi-step process that required staff to wait on the phones with insurers and call back the patient with the information, often leading to delays in care. “For a general practice residency program that typically completes 10,000 patient visits a year, it is a huge help connecting us to the information that we need quickly, so our patients can decide the best treatments for their budgets.”
For more than 25 years, the dental clinic at 145 N. 6th St., Reading, has served patients who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford dental care, according to Mountz.
“We offer very competitive rates and the same services you would find in a traditional dental office. We are staffed by dental residents supervised by our faculty,” she says “We do dentures, root canals, Invisalign, bleaching and dental implants. We offer financial assistance, and we offer employees payroll deduction for their treatments.”
Staffed by four dental residents Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., the clinic, which has graduated more than 100 residents since its opening, also serves as a resource for the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.
“We are consulted for cases at Hershey, where we send our residents and faculty to assist with preoperative dental clearance and treatments,” says Mountz, explaining that many dental residencies don’t offer access to similar tertiary centers and critical patients. “It is a great learning opportunity to be part of Hershey’s transplant and cancer treatment teams.”