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Times have changed for the role of the dental assistant

Times have changed for the role of the dental assistant


To the Assistant or Secretary who would get the most out of her work in the dental office and make a game out of her occupation, many opportunities are offered in working out systems that will save time and energy, and increase the income of the office and that of the individual worker.

Systems Developed by Assistant

For example: a telegraphic code system may be devised for signaling to and from the secretary's desk and office by means of the buzzer system, as follows:

  • 1 ring - wanted at the chair.
  • 2 rings - patient ready for dismissal.
  • 1 short and 1 long ring - prepare modeling compound for impression, etc.

In handling the mail, symbols can be agreed upon to be used instead of dictation in disposing of correspondence. The dentist, when reading the mail in the morning, merely places a symbol in the corner of each letter to denote the disposal of the same. For example:

  • FB File under business.
  • FP File under person.
  • SC Send check in payment.
  • FL-l Send form letter 1.
  • FL-2 Send form letter 2.
  • FL-3 Send form letter 3.

In connection with this code system, form letters may be prepared, as indicated above, as follows:

Letter No. 1

Dear Madam:
Yours of acknowledged and you will find enclosed an appointment card for time as designated. No further notice will be sent.
Yours respectfully,
Tel___ Dr___.

Letter No. 2

Dear Sir:
We regret that you are unable to keep the appointment given you on ____ and ask that you arrange for another time suitable to yourself at the earliest possible date, in order that the work started may be brought to completion.
Yours respectfully,

Letter No. 3

Dear Madam:
Replying to yours of we do not send itemized statements covering professional services rendered, but have at this office records of all work performed, and we will be pleased to go over the same with you if you will call here.
Yours respectfully,

During Dull Periods

During the summer months or holiday season, when business is more or less slow, or when the weather is bad and appointments are necessarily broken, much time can be saved by preparing for rush hour periods. Definite formulas may be worked out for mixing cements, heating modeling compounds, and for mixing plasters, and certain ingredients used in combining cements ,and alloys may be measured out and put in grain containers so as to avoid the necessity of weighing or measuring during rush-hour periods. Information on the subject of proper quantities and proportions can be obtained from the manufacturers of the material used, who are only too glad to supply such information, and if you wish, they will send a demonstrator direct to your office to show how these various things are done.

In order to win any degree of success in any line of work one must have a general liking for the work and in no occupation are there more opportunities offered for working out ideas that will save time, energy and money than are afforded the Dental Assistant. As an example, after each patient is finally dismissed the Assistant should send a nicely worded letter to the patient that will show an interest in the work after it is done and paid for. The letter should remind the patient that periodical calls for examination and prophylaxis are important.

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