The Ergonomic Products MegaTub: The Key to Efficiency in the Dental Operatory

At the core of Design Ergonomics design philosophy is the simple fact: You can’t use what you can’t reach. The equipment selections within the design must reflect this principle. It’s a LEAN principle. (check out my article on LEAN). Compared to all the cabinets and drawers in the operatory, the Ergonomic Products MegaTub appears small, but its namesake is proven in the role it plays in the operatory and the efficiency of your clinical department as a whole.

The 90 Percent Rule

When I ask gp’s, “What procedures do you do 90 percent of the time?” The answer (90 percent of the time) is “Fillings and crowns.” The MegaTub is our tool for organizing and consolidating the materials needed for those procedures. It is mighty enough to stock one week’s worth of these supplies. The MegaTub remains in the operatory at all times. It is positioned within arm’s reach. The only time it is taken out of the operatory is for restocking. Following the 90 percent rule means that restocking happens once a week. Which brings me to my next point.

Restocking

Have you ever wondered how your operatories get stocked? How many trips to resupply back to the ops does your staff make restocking? Some docs are nice enough to provide a “restocking cart”. Staff loads the cart with boxes of supplies and it’s trucked into each op. He/she restocks each drawer, then travels to the next op to repeat the process. What they put on the cart is usually a guess and they likely must either get more “stuff” or have too much and return it back to the resupply area. I’ve seen others load a big wash tub or – God forbid – their scrub top with supplies to restock. You’re doing it all wrong. It can be so much easier than this! The MegaTub is modular; once a week, simply carry your MegaTub to your supply area, restock and return. This does not happen daily. I always recommend midday in the middle of the week. This way, no one is rushing out on Friday at 5pm. Do ya feel me?

Make It Simple 

Simplification is key. If there are three doctors working in your dental practice, you all must agree on the smallest number of the absolute best materials. In our dental practices, Dr. Ahearn and his associates attend the annual Clinicians Report Review Course with Drs.Christensen to stay up to date with current material advancements. Groups like the CRA do all the research for you. Pick the best and stick with it. A review of products can be done every 1-3 years.

Standardization

Once materials are simplified, you can standardize your MegaTubs. No matter how many doctors work in your dental practice, I have yet to see a general practice that could not fit all of those 90 percenters in one single MegaTub.

Delivering dental treatment is how a dentist produces cash flow. The process by which dentistry is delivered is called production. Ergonomics is the study of efficiency. When you apply ergonomics to your dental practice, everyone becomes more productive. The MegaTub is a tool to improve ergonomics in your operatory. It is visual and within reach. I love the Ergonomic Products MegaTub – not just because I sell them, but because I get to help dentists implement them in their practices with Reboot Practice Productivity Training. With proper implementation, the MegaTub will make a gigantic impact toward the efficiency of your dental practice. Guaranteed. In fact, if you want my help, I will give them to you for free!


Author Angie Bachman