Understanding our patient base: an introduction to data analytics in dental practice
Dental practices are continually collecting patient data but it is often an underutilised resource. There is a growing trend towards use of data analytics within companies to guide business decisions. For dental practices which use digital systems, a large reserve of patient information is readily available. Simple data analytic techniques are presented which can be used to extract substantial insight into patient demographics, DNA (did not attend) rates and many other areas of practical
... of practical relevance to clinical service delivery and business management. Clinical Relevance Data analytics is well established in many different industries and has the potential for encouraging colleagues to look at their data and understand their patient base and changes over time; practice owners can gain insight into patient demographics to guide business decisions and improve patient care. Objectives To describe simple techniques to use data from practice management software and provide a stepby-step guide to basic statistical analysis using Microsoft Excel. To indicate further techniques for those who would like to develop more advanced data analytical skills using statistical software such as SPSS and the statistical analysis tools available in the freeware called "R". To discuss how an understanding of patient base and its changes over time can help improve patient care.