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An electrical power surge a few days after Thanksgiving was a jolt not only to the several appliances I lost but also to my calendar and pocketbook. The time spent on multiple calls to my insurance company, ComEd, repair shops, appliance stores – there are many more – left me spinning. Who had time for this?
While my losses added up, it struck me that for a dental office, where equipment runs into the thousands of dollars, the ripple effect on the practice, patients and schedules is much larger.
In my case, a 12,000-volt line fell on the 4,000-volt line that serves my neighborhood, unleashing a powerful surge that ruined appliances, computers, electronics and more. But lightning strikes, construction mishaps, and high air conditioning demand also can trigger unexpected electrical surges or fluctuations.
Think about all the ways your office relies on computer systems: appointments, accounting, patient charts, financial records, just to name a few. A surge that disables your systems could immobilize your practice for days.
Specialized dental equipment is another obvious concern. Some equipment has built-in surge protectors, but not all, and the loss of high-performance equipment like digital radiographs and scanners could tally in the thousands.
I’ve learned that there are some proactive measures to take:
Another sensible idea is a checklist of what you and your staff should do during a power outage. Dental insurer TDIC recommends a few steps:
Be sure to note that they need to be contacted to reschedule appointments.
No one expects a power surge or outage, so protect your practice now and save some headaches later (I say, while waiting for a new dishwasher to be delivered).
A tradition of working for the dental profession. The Chicago Dental Society was organized in 1864 and incorporated in 1878. The objective of the Chicago Dental Society is to encourage the improvement of the health of the public, to promote the art and science of dentistry and to represent the intrest of the members of the profession and the public that it serves.
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