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CareCredit Integration: Helping Your Patient Find a Way to Pay for Much Needed Treatment Now Only a Click Away

Friday, 20 June 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

For US practices, the CareCredit credit card is a popular option for patients to pay for medical and dental procedures. We are super excited to announce that our US customers can now access the CareCredit credit application through a handy link inside Curve Hero. This new link provides our customers with an easy and convenient way to start the credit application.

If you have a CareCredit Merchant ID, you’ll want to enter it in the Practice Setup area of Hero, along with your practice’s zip code. (If you’re not a CareCredit customer, please call them and see how they can help you improve your production numbers.) This information will be used to access and begin CareCredit’s application process.

How do we do this?

Once you’ve added your Merchant ID into Hero, you will now notice a change to the billing ledger and treatment planning sections. A “CareCredit Apply Now” icon will be visible, which when clicked, will take you to a CareCredit application form. This form will be pre-populated with the active patient’s available profile information. This information will include:

• First Name

• Middle Initial

• Last Name

• Date of Birth

• Social Security Number

• Address

• Home Phone Number

• Work Phone Number

Submit the form and that’s it! We said this was easy, right?

The Web Makes It Easy for Newbies to get Up to Speed

Friday, 20 June 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

As you know, there are many advantages to moving your practice to the cloud. Among these is usability.

A cloud-based application that is designed from the ground up to be used within a web-browser--like Curve Dental--provides a user experience that is all thumbs up. If you spend any amount of time on the Internet you'll find the user interface familiar and easy to use. It's just like moving from one website to another: You don't need training to learn how to use your bank's online banking system or how to order from Amazon. Cloud-based dental software is just like that; you don't need much training to figure out how to use it. Don't misunderstand me: Managing a dental practice is complicated. You will need training but you'll catch on real fast.

Catching on real fast is great for newbies on your team. Joining an established team can be intimidating and frustrating: New team members to learn to know, new processes to learn, and getting a feel for the practice and working hard to prove yourself to the team. And a new hire can be taxing on the practice as well. But with dental software on the cloud, like Curve Dental, that's one less thing to worry about.

If your newbie is comfortable with browsing the web they'll be just as comfortable with cloud-based dental software. That familiarity will help them get up to speed faster, prove themselves quicker, and make them more productive sooner.

The fact that you're reading this blog on the Web means you're already somewhat qualified to start managing your practice on the cloud. Software that's been developed 100% for the cloud is super easy to learn and fun to use.

Microsoft XP Worries Solved by the Cloud

Friday, 13 June 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

If you have been using Microsoft XP to run your dental practice software, you are undoubtedly concerned about Microsoft's announcement that they will no longer be supporting Microsoft XP. What does this mean for the day-to-day operations of your dental practice?

Discontinued Updates

Microsoft has provided updates for Windows XP for the past 12 years, but as of April 8, 2014, they are no longer providing those updates. Your computer will continue to run with this operating system, but will not receive updates to that address security, bug, and new features.

Discontinued Security Support

Microsoft will no longer provide security support for Windows XP. This means that your computer is vulnerable to threats and attacks from viruses and hackers.

Decreased Compatibility

Since Microsoft is no longer updating their system the number of other applications that are compatible with XP will shrink.

How Cloud-Based Dental Software Will Work for You

The cloud has been around for awhile, and now is the time for you to take advantage of the cloud's accessibility, flexibility, and convenience. More advantages of the cloud would be:

The cloud reduces IT expenses

If you use cloud-based dental software in your office it is possible to boot your server altogether. And with no server you'll spend less on maintenance. You may also find the cloud offers other business software solutions that are available at no cost, which can save you even more.

The cloud secures your data and programs

Your data on the cloud is safer than your data on a server in a broom closet in your practice. With the cloud your data is physically secured in a data center with perimeter fencing, 24/7 security and surveillance, and restricted access. Your data is also digitally secured by dedicated professionals who monitor server performance and provide up-to-the-minute data backup in multiple geographical locations.

No worry over servers

Since all of your information is stored online, you do not need to worry about finicky servers or limited access to your data.

Four Arguments for the Cloud

Friday, 13 June 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

Everyone’s doing it.

And unlike what your mother said, just because everyone is doing it DOES make it right. We’re all cloud computing. Every time you pop open your laptop or turn on your tablet you’re undoubtedly socializing online, or shopping online, or getting your news online, or banking online.

Here are four arguments for moving cloud computing into the dental practice:

Instantaneous Backup

Backing up data used to be a hassle, and while backing up must still occur; you do not need to be the one to worry about it. With cloud-based software, your data is backed up instantaneously, without any help from you. Let Curve Dental make sure that your important dental and billing records are secure and backed up from multiple locations.

Access to Data from any Location or Device

Need to work from home? Tired of snail's pace programs that frustrates and paralyzes your operations? With cloud-based dental software, you have access to your data at a moment's notice, from any device or location that has Internet access. Your business must move fast; your dental software should too.

The Cloud Grows with You

Previously, anytime you switched locations or added an employee, you needed to invest in the infrastructure (computer, software, etc) in order to support the change. Over time, you are spending thousands on devices and software licensing that becomes obsolete or unnecessary within a few years. Curve Dental's software is customized to your practice's unique needs, and if you grow, your program will grow with you, without any pain or investment in the unnecessary or redundant.

The Convenience of Flexibility

When you utilize someone else's dental software, you must make it work for you, and you must put up with its quirks and inconveniences. When using cloud-based dental software from Curve Dental, you are choosing software that is flexible and can be customized to meet the needs of your dental practice. Your business is unique; why should your software be any different?

Five Ways Dental Software Can Improve Your Practice

Friday, 13 June 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

Behind every practice is a complex machine made of many moving parts. Perhaps the difference between a killer practice and a not-so-killer practice is how well those moving parts work in unison. Fortunately, we provide dental software that helps you sync many of the moving parts. We provide a better dental software experience, from the user experience to technical support to the patient experience. Here are five ways that our software can improve the efficiency of your dental practice.

1. Staff Efficiency

In any dental practice, a lot of valuable time can be wasted reading charts and determining exactly what work has been complete and what work is left to be completed. Since we know you don't have any time to waste, we've created software that speeds up and simplifies the charting process, making it easier for you to move forward and provide exceptional care. Multiple treatment plan capabilities with multiple appointments per treatment plan make our chart flexible and powerful.

2. Hygienists and Assistants

It is imperative that your hygienists and dental assistants are able to read and interpret patient charts quickly and easily as well. Our easy-to-learn system allows these dental professionals to spend more time on patient care, rather than entering information and navigating through a complicated charting process.

3. Office Staff Focus

In addition to keeping track of patient care, your team has multiple responsibilities. IT maintenance and data backup need not be additional tasks for a team trained to care for people, not computers. We eliminate that worry and hassle since our software is web-based. Your patient data on line can prevent devastating losses of time and information in the event of hardware failure or catastrophe on your end.

4. Improved Imaging

You may be concerned about how our software will work with your digital x-ray sensors. You can relax. Our software can work with the most popular sensor, making it easy for you to capture images directly to the cloud. We also bridge to several imaging software systems.

5. Patient Education

As a dentist, you know how important it is to not only accept new patients, but to keep your current patients satisfied and pleased with your work. Your patients are more likely to be satisfied when you and your staff take the time to explain procedures. Our dental software makes this easy to do with patient education resources, such as animation videos and excellent graphics. This ensures that you are better able to address patient concerns and questions, keeping them satisfied overall.

Dental software, by its nature, should help you complete common and repetitive tasks faster, which makes your practice more efficient. Curve Dental is no exception.

New! Production Summary Report For Existing And Scheduled Production

Tuesday, 10 June 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

Ahh, another new report to make life just Jim Dandy. This new, click-and-done report will help you examine your production. I call it "click-and-done" because the report requires little user intervention, if any, to get started.

With the Production Summary Report you have the ability to view production by provider, which is fairly basic, but what's more exciting is the option of reporting on future scheduled production for future forecasting and planning purposes. In short, this report let's you see what's in the pipeline. And that's pretty cool.

This new report is accessed under the Financial Reports section (as illustrated below) and is called Production Summary. You'll find the controls for this report pretty similar to other standard reports, such as the Period Summary Report and the Collection Summary Report.

Enjoy!

The new Production Summary Report lets you view production by provider as well as by what production is scheduled and in the pipeline.

New! Insurance Plan Report Puts Key Info at Your Fingertips

Tuesday, 3 June 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

By request, we're pleased as punch to announce that you can now run a quick report to see which patients are affiliated with any given insurance plan. Our customers asked for a quick way to run this every day report, and we're happy to oblige.

When you want to run the report, start by going to the Report section of Hero. There, you will see a new report lingering under the Insurance Reports category: Insurance Plan Report. You simply search for the carrier in question, then search for the plan you are inquiring about with that carrier, and you will be presented with all of the patients attached to that insurance plan and related information about them. Simple!

We've had plenty of customers request this report and we are pleased to give you another tool to help you become more productive. Enjoy!

The New Insurance Plan Report helps you quickly see which patients are affiliated with any given insurance plan.

Curve Connex Now Provides Appt Reminders via Text Messaging

Monday, 2 June 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Our phones keep us organized these days. Notifications about everything from the latest news and sports highlights to your Facebook and Twitter updates arrive to keep you informed. In amongst all of this is the handiest communication tool yet: text messaging.

Now, you can send automated text message reminders to your patients with Curve Connex. Text reminders work just like email reminders; Patients can opt-in to receive email or text message reminders. Working with your patients, you decide how often to send reminders and when. Curve Connex provides you with the ability to tailor the communications to match your patients' preferences. The last thing you want is for your messaging to become a bother. You want your messaging to help patients get to their appointments, and Curve Connex delivers.

If your practice is already subscribed to Curve Connex and you want to start sending text messages, you'll be up and going in no time. You need only set a time interval on the Appointment Reminder Settings page under Notification Management in the Administration area, and then opt patients in through the Notifications tab in the Patient Profile, choosing text or email as the message vehicle. See Curve Community for more information. Seriously: It takes more time to write the how-to instructions than to actually add text messaging to your bag of patient communication tools.


Setting of the time interval on Appointment Reminder Settings page under Notification Management in the Administration area


Opt in under the Patient Profile Notification tab once set up.


Once a patient is set up to receive text message reminders, a reminder will be sent to the cell number on their Patient Profile when the time interval mentioned above has been reached. The patient will receive a text message reminding them of the time and date of the appointment.

We are excited to add this new communication feature to our Connex package. Enjoy the convenience of automation!

Not subscribed to Curve Connex? Click here to learn more.

Watermark Let's You Know When an Image has been Resized

Friday, 30 May 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

When images are larger than 1500 x 1500 pixels Curve Hero will resize the image to speed things up for a better user experience. It is possible for artifacts to appear in an image when it is resized. Thus, when images have been modified and resized a watermark is added to the upper left hand corner of the image, but only when you download to save the image locally.

When you download a modified image above 1500 x 1500 pixels, a watermark will appear.

Schick's USBCam4 Intraoral Camera Joins the Curve Imaging Party

Friday, 30 May 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

Schick lovers get another win with the completed integration of the USBCam4 with Curve's cloud-based imaging solution. With this latest integration Curve is now compatible with all of Schick's current line up of imaging devices.

Using a sleek and lightweight design, the USBCam4 sports multiple mounting options and incredible image quality. It's eight, high-quality LED's really lighten up the image resulting in improved image clarity and colour quality; it really excels in close-up images. Click HERE to learn more about the Schick USBCam4.

The connection between Curve's imaging solution and the USBCam4 is accomplished with TWAIN. Curve Dental customers can plug the camera into the computer, select the camera as the imaging source in the software, and start capturing images directly to the cloud in less than 60 seconds.

Score another point for the cloud!

Chromebook and Curve Hero: A Few Wins and a Few Losses

Wednesday, 28 May 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

First, the wins: A Chromebook can be an inexpensive way to add a computer to your office. Chromebooks are small, very portable, and affordable, making them an excellent option for smaller office spaces that utilize a wireless internet connection. For scheduling, charting, and billing the Chromebook shines.

But there are a number of losses.

First, it is important to understand that a Chromebook is not a Windows PC or a Mac. It uses a proprietary operating system developed by Google called Chrome OS, which is targeted around some very specific functions involving an individual's Google user account. Beyond those borders, the Chromebook does not perform many of the functions you'll find on a computer with the Windows or Mac operating systems.

Specific to Curve Hero, here are the limitations we've discovered so far:

  • Software installations are not supported by Chrome OS, therefore our Curve Capture software used for imaging and bridging cannot be installed for use. This also means that drivers for sensors and TWAIN installations cannot be installed as well. In a nutshell, Chromebook cannot be used for imaging or bridging.
  • Processing card payments becomes a drag. You can't connect the Bluefin mag stripe reader because the Chrome OS does not support the device. So, you won't be able to process card payments through the Bluefin reader.
  • A Chromebook can not read CSV, so you can't export reports.
  • The resolution of the screen is low and Hero will fire a warning when logging in notifying the user of that very fact.

Apart from the issues listed above, using Curve Hero on a Chromebook is pretty much the same as your Windows PC or Mac and can be an excellent solution for an office looking to add a low-cost, small footprint computer to the office. As we mentioned earlier, it works well for scheduling, charting, and billing.

New: Adjustment Summary Report

Thursday, 22 May 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

The world is not a perfect place and sometimes you need to make adjustments. You get in your car after the kids drove it and you have to adjust the seat, the mirrors, and the radio stations. You try on that new suit and of course you have to adjust here and there. Adjustments: Part of life.

Specific to your practice, adjustments happen frequently and Curve Hero helps you handle them with ease. What’s more convenient is having a concise way to report on these adjustments, for accounting and forecasting purposes.

And we’ve built a new handy Adjustment Summary Report that will summarize your adjustments in a jiffy. This report will allow you to see the details of each adjustment as well as summarized totals.

The controls and look and feel for this report is similar to the Collection Summary Report and you should find it easy to use. The filters available will allow offices to filter any combination of adjustment reporting results.

The new Adjustment Summary Report provides a quick look at adjustments by date with summary totals. You’ll find the new report under the Financial Reports category.

Patient Portal Locks After Multiple Bad Login Attempts

Thursday, 22 May 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

Following the release of a similar security feature for our Hero software, we have added extra security to the Patient Portal login as well.

When logging into the Portal, your patient will have three tries to enter the proper credentials after which their account will become locked. The primary reason behind this is to help protect against brute force attackers that will go through every possible password until they gain entry.

Your patient can unlock their account without having to call your practice. In order to unlock their account, your patients simply click the “reset your password” link embedded in the message (shown below) and they will be taken to the Forgot Password page, where they can enter their email address and receive a new verification email. Once they verify their account again, the lock will be removed and they are free to log in as normal.

Adding this security enhancement to the Patient Portal gives us goose bumps and brings a tear to our eyes. The end result is better security for everyone. And who wouldn’t want that?

Example of new warning message when patient account is locked.

Keeping the Bad Guys Out and the Good Guys Safe: Improved Password Security

Thursday, 15 May 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

We've built a mighty wall around Curve Hero. There's only one way in and that's through the login. If you think about it, the strength of the wall around your patient information is only as strong as your login password.

Using a simple password can spell trouble. Short passwords are most certainly an achilles heel to the security of your practice. What to do? As always, we're here to help:

In our increased effort to enhance security we have instituted a new password policy. When changing or adding a password in the admin section of Hero, you will notice a new prompt appear detailing this new policy.

New passwords that do not meet this new policy will not be accepted.

For now, only new and edited passwords are affected by this policy. In the near future we will ask all of our customers to change their existing passwords to meet this policy. We'll ask kindly and provide you with plenty of time to comply. At some point, however, in the interest of security, we will require all passwords to meet this new policy.

Remember: There's no time like the present. We suggest you change your password at your earliest convenience to conform to the new policy. The sooner you change your password the better. There's no reason to wait for us to make the policy a requirement.

As an aside, the new password rules are the same for the patient portal your patients may use to access account balances and pay their bills online (as part of the Curve Connex patient communication package). We're committed to tight security at all login areas.

2012 ADA Claim Form Now Available For US Offices

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

You can now use the 2012 ADA claim form to print insurance claims from within Curve Hero. The 2006 ADA claim form will remain available for use with those carriers that have yet to upgrade to the 2012 format.

When observing the carrier information section in Hero, you will now notice a new drop down selection at the bottom that allows you to print manual claims for that carrier with either the 2006 or the 2012 version.

You can now print insurance claims using the 2012 or 2006 ADA claim form. Click on the blue box to choose the form you require.


You will also notice a small change in the Claims module when you attempt to print a blank claim form. There are now two choices:

  • Print Blank 2006 Claim
  • Print Blank 2012 Claim

Preferred Site Now Available In Patient Profile Views

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

I'll tell you what you really really want... What you want is information at your fingertips. With information you can provide better service to your patients; become more efficient; generate more production; become a rock star; have your own music video on YouTube; buy your own island off the coast of France. And it all began with a little more information at your fingertips.

Voila! You'll now find the patient's Preferred Site added to the list of options that can be customized for the Profile Summary (as well as the default fields displayed when adding a patient).

When navigating to the Admin section of Curve Hero and then to the Patient Profile Views Setup page, you will now notice the addition of the new Preferred Site option under "All", which you can now drag and drop into the other two columns.

Start working on that melody, my friend! Island life is just around the corner.

Send Line Items When Creating Attachments Through NEA's FastAttach

Thursday, 8 May 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

We have made a tweak to our integration with NEA's FastAttach system to now send the line items along with the submission. You will now notice that when a submission is sent to FastAttach, the procedure codes of the line items and any chosen teeth or quadrants will now be available for review.

The procedure code for each item, as well as the selected teeth or quadrant, is now available for review.

Custom Reports Now Include Preferred Site

Thursday, 8 May 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

You may remember that just a day or so ago we added a new feature to Curve Hero: You can assign a patient to a preferred site (for those practices with multiple locations). We also suggested that you begin to assign your patients to preferred sites.

Why?

Because we have grandiose plans for practices with multiple sites. Assigning patients to a preferred site is just the beginning. From here til eternity, we'll be adding new features upon that base.

So, here's what's next: With the addition of the ability to add a preferred site to a patient's profile, we have now added the ability to report on this new information.

When you create a custom patient report using the Patient Demographics base report, there will now be the addition of three new options when selecting fields for this report, which are:

  • Preferred Site
  • RP Preferred Site
  • HoH Preferred Site

For customer reports you may have already created using the Patient Demographics base report, these new columns can be added, if desired.

When creating a custom report based on the Patient Demographic base report, you can now organize the report by preferred site for each specific patient contact.

In the Beginning: Assigning Patients to Sites

Wednesday, 7 May 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Line upon line. One brick at a time.

People, we're on our way to providing our multi-site customers with super awesome multi-site functionality. It begins by assigning patients to sites. It will end with super awesome reporting across multiple sites.

But let's start at the beginning:

In order to specify a specific site on a per patient basis for various services, we have added a section to the patient profiles of both Canadian and US instances that allow you to set a patient to a specific site.

For US customers, you assign a patient to a site in the Patient Profile (see above).

 

For CA customers, you assign a patient to a site in the Patient Profile (see above).

 

The site assignment section (as well as the transfer preferred site feature below) will only be visible when there is more than one site created for your account. When you create a new patient or non-patient contact, the default preferred site will be set to the currently logged in site.

To make the transfer of preferred sites easier for you to apply to multiple patients, we have added the ability to transfer preferred sites in the General Administration area of Curve Hero. This works similar to the Transfer Fee Guide feature, which you may have already used. You will have the ability to convert all patient and non-patient contacts from one preferred site to another.

Location of new Transfer Preferred Site feature

 

What is the benefit to assigning patients to a specific site?

At the moment, none; however, that will change within the space of only a few weeks when we begin to expand functionality in reporting that will allow you to generate reports for a specific site only. That's pretty exciting stuff. We recommend that you start assigning patients to sites now; when the reporting capabilities are released you'll benefit immediately, as a result.

The Polaris and Spectra Intraoral Cameras Now Supported by Curve Imaging

Thursday, 1 May 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

Air Techniques is a big contender when it comes to imaging devices in the dental industry and we are proud to announce that we are now supporting two of their intraoral cameras:

Sporting exceptional image quality and superior optics, the Polaris intraoral camera has been recommended by consultants everywhere and is very easy to use.

The Spectra builds on the Polaris quality by adding a Doppler radar-like effect to the images to aid in caries detection. This camera helps eliminate the guesswork associated with diagnosing tooth decay.

We are excited to add these cameras to the lineup of devices we have integrated into our proprietary software and look forward to offices enjoying their precision and usability.

Logging Failed Appointment Reminders

Wednesday, 30 April 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

It's great to have the ability to send text message (in beta testing now!) and email reminders out to patients. But if Curve Hero is lacking the proper information to send those reminders, namely an email address or a mobile number, that's something you want to know. You'll want to add an email address or mobile number.

To address this issue, we have improved the logging of our Correspondence module to track any failed reminders.

A failure message will now appear in the Correspondence Module when an appointment reminder fails to reach a recipient because an e-mail address or mobile number is not available.

The following information will be displayed in the Correspondence Module when reminder fails to remind:

  • Date
  • Description
    • Reminder Type (Text or Email)
    • Recipient Name
    • Recipient Identifier (HOH, or RP)
    • Date and time of the appointment
  • Patient
  • User

Failure messages will also appear in the sidekick, too, just as the successful ones currently do.

Just as successful appointment reminder messages appear in the Sidekick, so will failure messages.

For Your Safety and Protection: Your Account Locks After Five Failed Login Attempts

Wednesday, 30 April 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

It's nice to know that somebody's got your back. And we got yours. If somebody's messing with your account, trying to get lucky and guess their way into your system, we'll promptly lock your account. After five failed login attempts Curve Hero blows a whistle and yells, "Everyone: Out of the pool!" and prevents any further attempts to log in. After the account is locked, the only person who can unlock the account is the authorized admin for your practice.

A sinister message appears after five failed login attempts and Curve Hero then locks the account. Only the practice Admin can unlock an account.

Of course, we're only human and sometimes we forget passwords, or we forget the Caps Lock key is on, or we failed our keyboarding class in junior high school and can't type if our life depended on it. So, Curve Hero will sound a warning on the fourth failed login that one more failed attempt will result in the account being locked.

To unlock an account, the practice admin simply navigates to the User Management section of Hero's Administration section. Once there, the admin needs to click on the staff member's name. A red bubble notification will be present stating the account is locked. Simply click "Unlock Account" and then click "OK" on the confirmation, and that's it! Voila! Back in business!

Time-Space Continuum Breakthrough: Switch Sites Without Logging Back In

Tuesday, 22 April 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

To be in two places at the same time; now, wouldn't that be something. Were humanity able to unravel the mysteries of time and space think how much more efficient we would be. The doctor: Prepping a crown in operatory one while giving little Johnny his annual check up in operatory four. The office manager: Taking a payment from Mrs. Fairbanks at the front desk while checking inventory in the back room.

To be clear--and to put you at ease--we have not solved that little puzzle, yet. We, like you, are still muddling through our short stint on Earth making do with the same space at the same time. But, we did make a little breakthrough that will make you just that much more efficient.

We understand that when needing to switch back and forth from one site to another it can be a bit trying. Having to keep logging out and logging back in can be a big time guzzler. To rectify this, we have now added the ability to switch from one site to another without having to logout and login.

If you have more than one site created for your practice, take a look at the More Menu menu. You will now see a new link that will notify you which site you are on. You will now see a section labeled Site: [Site Name].

Note the "Site:" menu option. Click here to open a list of other available sites.

When you click on this new menu item, a new dialog will open allowing you to switch effortlessly from one site to another. Simply click the dropdown, choose which site you need, and click OK (see illustration below). See: Two places while sitting in the same chair--kind of.

New dialog to switch sites!

Inventory Items and Unit Estimation: Our Bad!

Tuesday, 22 April 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

In our ongoing quest to provide a bug-free environment, we have patched an issue that was causing inventory items to miscalculate the units necessary to complete any charted procedure.

How did this work? Let me explain...

When an inventory item was included in a visit with another procedure in Charting, it caused the Sidekick to calculate the units necessary as NaN*, regardless of what was entered on any other procedures. When this proposed visit was then dragged onto the scheduler and the appointment was created, the appointment would default to four units. Why four units and not three? Because four is divisible by two and three is a prime number and, as all people know, prime numbers are prone to conspiracy theories (example: all UFO sightings occur on prime dates or at prime hours).

But I digress: The grand point of my note is that this error has been fixed.

Now, when you add an inventory item (which has no unit allocation) to a visit with other procedures, the proper amount of units will display in the Sidekick. When the appointment is dragged into the scheduler, Hero will create an appointment with the proper units as indicated.

Problem solved! One less thing.

____________________

* NaN, not to be confused with nan, an Indian flatbread, is short for "Not-a-Number" indicating that the value entered is not a legal number. Who's deciding what's a legal number as opposed to an illegal number? That would be javascript, who is both judge and executor, and in this case, because the output really isn't a legal number, 'NaN' is displayed due to an error on our part.

Appointment Reminder Details Added to the Correspondence Module

Thursday, 17 April 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

People like to see the details. That doesn't mean people actually read the details, but there is a sense of satisfaction knowing that IF one wants to get into the nitty gritty they can.

In that spirit we added more appointment reminder details to the Correspondence Module. The additional information includes the following:

  • Date
  • Description
    • Reminder Type (Email or Text)
    • Cell Phone Number or Email Address at the time of the reminder
    • Recipient Name
    • Recipient Identifier (HOH, or RP)
    • Date and time of the appointment
  • Patient
  • User

Why did we make this change? Curve Connex automatically sends appointment reminders to your patients via email and text. You tell Curve Connex when you want reminders to be sent and and how and then never worry about reminding patients again. With all that automation going on behind the scenes, it makes sense for you to be able to monitor this activity at your leisure.

This new information will be presented in both the main page of the Correspondence Module, as well as in the Sidekick (see images below).

In the main Correspondence page you'll now see what reminders were sent to the active patient and when.

You'll now see appointment reminder activity in the Sidekick, too.

Schick 33 Digital X-ray Sensor Now Compatible with Curve Imaging

Friday, 11 April 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

Schick by Sirona's 33 digital x-ray sensor is their newest sensor with image resolution quality that surpasses most other sensors, the company claims. It also sports the Schick interchangeable cable system. That's all fine and well; however, we believe the most important feature of the Schick 33 is that it is now compatible with Curve's native imaging capabilities.

Now, you can plug and play this baby and start capturing digital x-ray images to the cloud in no time at all. We took advantage of Schick 33's ability to be used with TWAIN and have fully integrated it into our Curve Capture TWAIN solution, adding one more industry leading device to our repertoire.

We will continue to have surprises up our sleeve in the future, but for now...Enjoy!

Credit Cards Can Now Be Accepted For Insurance Payments

Tuesday, 8 April 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Insurance companies are now providing reimbursement by way of a prepaid credit card. In order to help facilitate this new payment system you can now record an insurance payment as a credit card payment.

Using a prepaid credit card as payment works the same as the current credit card payment types for a patient. When you make an insurance payment you will see that you now have the new option of selecting Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, or CareCredit (US Only).

Customers can now properly identify how an insurance payment was made, including a credit card option.

Making Better Sense in the Correspondence Module

Monday, 7 April 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

In the Correspondence Module you'll find a log of interactions between your practice and any given patient. Previous to this upgrade, automated reminders did not display a User associated with the correspondence, because there really isn't a user in these specific cases.

However, to be more transparent, we opted to name the User as "Curve Hero" for these specific interactions. As a result, it should be clear to you that Curve Hero initiated the interaction and not a human user, assuming all members of your team are human. Perhaps a more politically correct statement would be: "...and not a biological user."

Enjoy.

Curve Hero now lists itself as the User responsible for Automated reminders entries.

New Dialog For Security Codes On Credit Cards

Friday, 4 April 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

When you encourage your patients to use our patient portal for payments, you want to know that your patients have all the information they need to make a successful transaction. For this reason, we have added some helpful information for your patients to locate their card verification number. This can be different based on the exact credit card used and can be located in different spots on the card as well. To eliminate any question about this factor of the transaction, we have added a helpful dialog to make online payments super easy.

Just click the "What is this?" link to open up more information about this feature on the credit card.



Your patients will appreciate the "What is this?" link found below the Card Verification Number field. When they click on this link they'll be shown where the Card Verification Number can be found (see next graphic).


Imaging Improvements and Letter Editor Upgrade:

Tuesday, 25 March 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Released the evening of Tuesday, April 1, 2014!

We're always making improvements to our software, which is one of the many benefits of using web-based dental software: Constant improvements without the hassle of installing upgrades. In this case, we centered our sights on our native imaging capabilities, rolled up our sleeves and accomplished the following:

  • Ability to print a mount
  • Ability to save a modified image

Printing a Mount
With server-side printing now enabled, our customers can now print a mount. Simply right click on any mount and choose "Print Mount". Piece of cake!

Click HERE for the Community article on Printing a Mount

To print a mount, simply right-click and select "Print Mount".

Saving a Modified Image
More benefits from server-side functionality: You can now save a modified image. So, after you've tweaked an image (by adjusting contrast, or brightness, or whatever), you simple right-click and then choose "Save Modified". Another piece of cake.

Click HERE for the Community article on using Save Modified

To save an image that you have tweaked (by adjusting contrast or brightness, as an example), right click on the image and choose "Save Modified".

Our Built-in Letter Editor Gets Better
One of the things that our customers like about Curve Hero is how easy it is to merge letters. Look, other dental software make letter merging a nightmare-ask anybody that's used DENTRIX and they know exactly what I mean. With Curve Hero, because the letter editor is a part of the software, merging a letter is painless.

Now, we've even made it better. We took a second look at the user interface and noticed that we could improve the layout and positioning of key buttons. Now, the layout is more intuitive and the interface is congruent with the Hero's overall design.

We're making improvements to Curve Hero nearly every other day-okay, at least once a week, but sometimes more often. Because Curve Hero is a web-based application our customers never worry about having to stop operations or work late to upgrade. All improvements, like this one, just show up and make themselves available for immediate use.

Advantage Curve!

We made improvements to the Letter Editor: The layout of key buttons is more intuitive and the design is more in line with the rest of Curve Hero.

More Logical Arrangement of Fields in the Non-Patient Contact Profile

Wednesday, 19 March 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

You know, sometime when you look back on something you built earlier you occasionally see something that you know you could have done better. The perfectionists never rest and never complete anything.

We were looking at the Contact Profile for non-patients and we noticed that the grouping of the fields could be more logically placed. So, we rearranged the fields in a more logical manner. The resulting layout pays more attention to grouping the fields together with greater relevancy.

New layout of US non-patient contact profile dialog.

Acteon's SOPRO Camera Completely Orange Now

Wednesday, 19 March 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

We can proudly say that we are now supporting Acteon's Sopro line of cameras. This includes the Soprolife, Soprocare, Sopro 717 and Sopro 617.

We have successfully integrated this line of devices into our Curve Capture TWAIN solution for use with Curve Hero, providing our customers with an excellent option to capture and store high resolution images with these wonderful cameras. And remember, all images are captured directly to the cloud: No backup worries; No hard disk space worries; All images accessible from anywhere at any time.

If this camera line feels like an option for your office, please feel free to contact our support team and they will enable our TWAIN functionality for you.

Resetting Confirmations When Using The Queue

Monday, 10 March 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Up until now, when a confirmed appointment was moved to the queue the confirmation followed the appointment to whatever new date and time to which it was moved. If you wanted to change the status of the appointment (from Confirmed to No Confirmation) you had to do that manually.

Well, our customers didn't like that. And, quite frankly, it follows that if an appointment is moved from one day to another, one can't automatically assume that the patient has confirmed the new appointment date and time. So we fixed that.

Now, if you move a confirmed appointment into the queue, and then out of the queue to a new date and time, the status will be changed to No Confirmation. As a result, you'll be better able to manage the appointment and make sure the patient is aware of the change. You should see better appointment attendance as a result.

This simple change is another example of how Curve Hero is constantly improving thanks to the suggestions of our VIP customers (and at Curve all of our customers are VIP customers).

New Collection Summary Report Provides Numbers by Payment Type

Thursday, 6 March 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

One or two of our VIP customers (all of our customers are VIP customers) told us that we could improve our Custom Payment Report by including an option to sort by payment type.

So we did that.

We put one or two of our super engineers to work and Bam! we created a new report called the Collection Summary Report.

This new report is located under the Financial Reports category in the Reports section and appears in a new window in the same manner that the Period Summary and Bank Deposit reports currently do. The Collection Summary Report looks familiar to these other reports since they use much of the same information. This leads to a more intuitive user experience for our customers that are already familiar with the current Curve Hero reporting capabilities.

The new report allows our customers to sort by transaction types and payment types, which will allow greater visual insight into understanding how revenue is entering and leaving the practice, because knowledge is power. And with Curve Hero you're quickly becoming He-Man, Master of the Universe or his twin sister, She-ra, Princess of Power ... whichever you prefer. But the bottom line is more numbers and information at your fingertips.

Location of new Collection Summary report.

Clearer Confirmation When Locking Notes

Wednesday, 5 March 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

In order to avoid any confusion when locking notes, as it is a permanent change, we have updated the confirmation dialog that pops up when locking said notes. Instead of just saying "OK", the text will now read "Permanently Lock".

Updated lock notes dialog window.

What to Do When Your Patients Use Benefits Outside of Your Practice

Monday, 3 March 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Patients can use up part of their insurance benefits at another dental practice, or the office can start using Hero in the middle of the patient's benefit year with the patient having already used part of their benefits. In these circumstances, without somehow being able to track what was used outside of your practice, insurance estimates were ... wrong.

So we fixed that.

We tackled this issue by adding a new feature to the insurance policy information section. Now when you open the policy Information dialog, there will be a link at the bottom: Coverage Used Outside Curve Hero. When this is clicked it will open a new dialog that will allow you to specify already used amounts for maximums, ensuring a more accurate calculation of the patient's actual remaining benefits.

When one of your patients have used a portion of their benefits outside of your practice you'll want to click here and record those amounts.

For Canadian instances, there will be a Basic, Major, and Ortho amount that can be set for patients in a family (who are covered by the policy), in accordance with the maximums shown in the sidekick as well as the main insurance section. If the coverage is listed as combined, then the Basic and Major amounts will combined as expected when dealing with the maximums.

For Canadian practices, you'll see this dialog box when wanting track benefits used outside the practice.

For US instances, there will be an individual amount that can be set for patients in a family as well (who are also covered by the policy), in accordance with the maximums shown in the sidekick as well as the main insurance section.

For US practices, you'll see this dialog box when wanting track benefits used outside the practice.

With both instances, there is a dropdown that will allow you to set the used amounts depending on the available plan year, which will allow offices to change the amounts from previous and current years, This defaults to the current year. These edited amounts will apply to all insurance calculations for the year chosen.

When You Need to Manually Enter an Insurance Estimate of Zero

Monday, 3 March 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

We recognize that there are cases when you would need to manually set an insurance estimate to $0 in an appointment or a treatment plan, and NOT have it recalculate the insurance at checkout.

Say, for instance, that you added a procedure code to a treatment plan or appointment and the insurance policy has added the insurance estimate to the line item, but maybe that insurance company does not cover that specific procedure code. In this case you would need to change the estimate to zero. The problem before was that when offices checked out their treatment plan or appointment, the insurance calculation would be reapplied when added to the billing ledger if $0 was detected.

This change will not affect the ability to redo your insurance estimate in the treatment plan. Re-estimation will function as before and will recalculate insurance estimates that have been manually changed to $0.

This change will help you cope with insurance situations that are not black and white for all procedures encountered.

The Case for Having Your Patients Opt In to Receive Text and Email Appointment Reminders

Wednesday, 19 February 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

The argument for having your patients opt in to receive appointment reminders via text or email hinges on one simple question put to the patient: "Mrs. Jones, do you want to receive appointment reminders via text and email?" If Mrs. Jones responds with "Yes!" you've done two things: 1)Mrs. Jones is now expecting and looking for appointment reminders; and 2)You've just made a dent in your no-show rate. Everybody's happy.

If you don't ask Mrs. Jones to opt in to receive appointment reminders you put at risk the relationship you currently have with Mrs. Jones. If Mrs. Jones receives an unexpected text from you she may not be so happy about that; she could be downright angry. Privacy is a big deal to folks these days, bigger to some than others. Mrs. Jones could be outside your practice one fine morning throwing eggs and talking to the local radio station. Then its dogs and cats living together and the whole world is asunder!

Let us, therefore, protect order from chaos and discourage the cohabitation of our four-legged furry friends.

In staying true to an obligatory "opt-in" by the patient, we have removed the practice-wide settings in the administration area regarding notification settings pertaining to email and text message reminders (text messaging is starting beta testing soon).

To activate this feature for an individual patient, you will click on the Notifications tab when looking at the patient's profile. You will notice a Reminder Notifications section at the bottom. There you can check whether the patient should receive appointment reminder notifications via email or text.

Of course, checking these boxes willy nilly, without the patient's consent, would be bad. Ask your patients if they would like to receive appointment reminders via text and email. Most will say "Yes!". That's an opt in if there ever was one.

Thank you for choosing Curve Dental to help manage your practice. We appreciate your support and your input!

Deleting Letter Templates and Keeping the "Office" Clean and Tidy

Friday, 14 February 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

You may be aware of a reality program on cable television that depicts the lifestyles of self-professed hoarders. Their homes are stacked from floor to ceiling with stuff. Most episodes end happily as the home is cleaned out and the hoarder is restored to some level of satisfaction.

We don't want our customers to feel like hoarders when it comes to letter templates. Our customers can now delete any template, which keeps the list of available templates manageable.

When you load or save a letter template, in addition to the New Template and Save Template buttons, you will also see a Delete Template button. To avoid any accidental deletions, a confirmation message will appear before actually deleting a template.

Here's to keeping your list of letter templates clutter-free!

Benefits Used for Individuals Now Displayed for Canadian Insurance Policies

Tuesday, 11 February 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

For our Canadian customers, it came to our attention that Curve Hero was displaying the full amount used and remaining by an entire family on an individual's used and remaining amounts. Obviously, that's incorrect; the amount displayed should only be for used and remaining benefits for only the individual.

So we fixed that. Now the used and remaining amounts shown in the Sidekick and the Insurance module pertain only to an individual. This change will also affect insurance estimates as well, which were being calculated incorrectly before due to this family usage vs. individual usage dilemma.

Many thanks to our customers who brought this error to our attention.

Digital Doc is Curve Dental's Newest BFF

Monday, 10 February 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

I've been told by our development team that they've completed testing on Digital Doc's IRIS Intraoral Camera. Our customers can now use the IRIS to capture stunning digital intraoral photographs directly to the cloud through TWAIN. Capturing directly is boss! It's quick. It's easy. The image is not stored on a local drive, where it can take up limited HD space and create a data backup issue. Nobody wants that!

If you have a IRIS camera and want to use it with Curve Image, we just need to enable TWAIN functionality for you. Feel free to chat with our customer service team to learn more.

One other exciting aspect of completing the testing on IRIS is that it opens the gates for many other cameras and input devices to be tested. As each device completes testing we'll be sure to let you know.

Practices Don't See Used/Remaining Balances for Non-Assignment Policies

Thursday, 6 February 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Not too long ago we added a neat feature that lets you see used and remaining balances for any given patient. We were quite proud of that one and wrote home to our mothers about it. Well, our customers were pretty happy, too, until someone realized that these balances were showing up even for patients who had non-assignment policies.

For non-assignment policies, obviously, Curve Hero really can't track what has been used and what is remaining because the benefits are being paid directly to the patient, rather than to the practice. So the balance being displayed in the Sidekick was a highly dubious number (akin to a hopeful politician making a fiscal promise).

What to do?

Our engineers did their magic: Now, for patients with non-assignment policies, Curve Hero will not display a used and remaining balance in the Sidekick. Eureka! Problem solved.

Next!

Minimum Amounts For Online Patient Portal Payments

Thursday, 6 February 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

In order to give our customers more control over the payments received through their patient portal, we added a new, handy gizmo that sets the minimum amounts that may be charged on any one transaction.

Translation: If your patient owes $100 and you will only accept $100 as a payment, you can do that. Or, you can set a minimum amount that you'll accept.

You may either leave the online payments with no minimum amount as it has been (which is the default), or you can restrict payments to either a fixed dollar amount or 100% of what the patient owes.

When making an online payment your patients will notice whatever payment restriction you employ as they are adding the amount they wish to pay. A statement will appear under the payment amount field notifying them of your practice's policy; a payment amount outside of your payment restrictions will not be accepted.

Your practice now has more control over what payment amounts are accepted through online payments. You can restrict payments to 100% of the outstanding balance or set a minimum payment amount.

Improved Card Representation on Your Patient Portal

Tuesday, 4 February 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

Last Fall we introduced our VIP customers to our new Patient Portal. Because all of our customers are VIP's all of our customers can subscribe to the new Patient Portal where their patients can make an online payment, which is very cool.

While accepting online payments is the cat's meow, your practice may not accept every type of card. Now, the practice can determine what cards they wish to accept and the corresponding card logos will now display on the patient portal. These card graphics encourage payment, which is what every practice wants.

To have these logos display on your patient portal, go to the Admin section of Hero where Bluefin options are managed; that's where you'll determine which cards you wish to accept. The cards included are:

  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • American Express
  • Discover

So, what happens if one of your patient tries to use a card your practice does not accept? A polite note appears explaining to your patient that while you appreciate their intent to make a payment, unfortunately your practice does not accept the type of card they are using.

Viewing Patient Relationships Has Never Been Easier!

Monday, 27 January 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

We are super excited to announce a new feature in the Sidekick that makes it super easy to decipher and understand patient relationships. We call it the Sidekick Family Member Picker-or you can call it "easy".

So what is the Sidekick Family Member Picker?

When you click on a patient's name in the Sidekick, you used to see the current patient and any other family members. This did not include non-patient contacts, relationship identifiers, or ages, making it very difficult to differentiate between family members with the same name.

So, we modified the Family drop down and added a couple of other goodies as well. Now, when you click the patient's name in the Sidekick, you will see a list of all family members as well as whether patients are a Head of Household (HOH) or a Responsible Party (RP). We also added the age next to each name to give more heads up information to the user.

The Sidekick Family Member Picker in action. Note that the Head of Household and the Responsible Party are clearly indicated. Also, the age of each family member appears, making it a bit easier to determine who is who (or is it whom is whom?).

Another Victory for Curve Customers: Used and Remaining Benefits Now Displayed

Thursday, 23 January 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

A big win for our customers! You can now view used and remaining benefits for any patient. Our customers have been asking for this capability and we're now very happy to deliver. In the last several months the insurance capabilities in Hero have been greatly expanded, which has made for some very happy folks.

So, why is this feature important? Your patients like to know what insurance benefits they have remaining to use. The front desk team is often asked for this information and being able to access it quickly makes them look like a rock star.

The new figures can be readily viewed in the SideKick under the Insurance section (as well as in the main Insurance Policy window). Used and remaining benefits are clearly displayed in three categories for Canadian offices: Basic, Major, and Ortho, and two categories for American offices: Individual and Family.

Online Patient Payments are Super Duper Secure

Thursday, 9 January 2014 by Andy Jensen, CMO

When patients pay their bills online through a Curve Dental patient portal the transaction is protected by 128 bit encryption. That's always been the case. A recommendation from one or two very smart people prompted us to add a fancy icon at the bottom of the payments page to highlight the fact that the transaction is secure.

Every transaction is secured using AES 128 bit encryption. AES is a standard adopted by the US Government and is used extensively world wide to secure financial transactions. Some cryptology experts have presented evidence that in order to "crack" 128 bit encryption a very fast computer would required six thousand trillion years of processing time.

Your transaction is secure! This new icon was recently placed to assure patients that their transaction is secure.

The Recare Type Name-Comma Syndrome: A Cure is Found!

Monday, 6 January 2014 by Megan Boyd, Product Manager

A handful of our VIP customers (all of our customers are VIP's) reported a very strange phenomenon when printing a report containing recare type names. When the report was printed some recare type names were on different rows within the report.

After a great deal of investigative work, ballistics, autopsy, and a complimentary palm reading from a self-proclaimed "psychic" we identified the cause of the error. If a recare type name included a comma (such as "Scaling, RP") the report generator would split the name into two parts at the comma, placing the first part on one line and the second part on the very next line in the report.

Ah! Now that we found the commonality it didn't take us long to correct the problem. You are more than welcome to continue to use commas in any recare type name; it will not affect reporting at all.

Many thanks to our customers for bringing the issue to our attention and for being patient as we tracked down the cause and then fixed it.

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