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The Business of Dentistry: Patient Appointments and Scheduling (AGD 550)

Presenter: Natalie Kaweckyj, LDARF, CDA, CDPMA, COMSA, COA, CPFDA, CRFDA, MADAA, BA; Wendy Frye-Agers, CDA, RDA, EFDA, MADAA; Lynda Moan Charlton, CDA; Lisa Lovering; Linette Schmitt, CDA, LDA, MADAA


Dentistry is a business as well as a health care service profession. It is essential to provide treatment for patients in a caring manner, but it is also necessary to maintain maximum efficiency and production in order to ensure a successful practice. The administrative assistant plays a key role in the smooth operation of any dental practice, from managing accounts, appointments, and inventory to ensuring vital communication between team members and with the patients of the practice. The knowledgeable administrative assistant not only helps to increase office production, but also assists the dental team in the smooth running of day-to-day operations. This appointment management course focuses on the many procedures and appointments offered by today’s dental offices. The administrative assistant must have a basic working knowledge of these procedures and therefore maintain an efficient office scheduling system.


Natalie Kaweckyj has worked in the dental assisting profession as an administrator, a clinician, and an educator. She is currently a Licensed Dental Assistant in Restorative Functions (LDARF), Certified Dental Assistant (CDA), Certified Dental Practice Management Administrator (CDPMA), Certified Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Assistant (COMSA), Certified Orthodontic Assistant (COA),  Certified Preventive Functions Assistant (CPFDA), Certified Restorative Functions Dental Assistant (CRFDA), and a Master of the American Dental Assistants Association, and holds several expanded function certificates. Natalie graduated from an ADA accredited dental assisting program at Concorde Career Institute and graduated with a BA in Biology and Psychology from Metropolitan State University. 

Natalie served as President of ADAA  from 2017-2018 and 2010-2011. She has served in many capacities at the local and state levels of her state association and has served in all officer positions of the ADAA and has chaired several councils and committees. Natalie has served as a director for the old ADAA Foundation and is a founding member of the Professional Dental Education Foundation (PDAEF). In addition to her association duties, Natalie is very involved legislatively with her state board of dentistry and state legislature in the expansion of the dental assisting profession. She has authored several other courses on a wide variety of topics for the ADAA and is a speaker on dental topics locally, nationally, and internationally. 


Wendy Frye-Agers, CDA, RDA, EFDA, MADAA
Wendy Frye-Agers currently lives in St. Louis, Missouri where she is a chairside expanded functions dental assistant for the St. Louis VA Medical Center. She is a Certified Dental Assistant, Registered Dental Assistant (CA), Expanded Function Dental Assistant, and a Master of the American Dental Assistants Association. Wendy graduated from the ADA accredited dental assisting program at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Wendy has been a CDA for more than 25 years and is a Life Member of the ADAA.

Wendy has served in many various capacities on the local and state levels of the Iowa, Missouri, and California Dental Assisting Associations. She has also participated in the Missions of Mercy in Iowa and Missouri.

Lynda Moan Charlton, CDA
Lynda Moan Charlton lives in Billings, MT. She is a Certified Dental Assistant, has her ACLS certification and has been employed in the private practice of Michael W. Stuart, DDS up until 2009 as a chairside assistant and has currently been assisting in the practice of Will Winterholler. Lynda began her dental assisting career as an on the job trained assistant. 

Lisa Lovering
Lisa Lovering is employed chairside in the private practice of Michael W. Stuart, DDS. Lisa began her dental assisting career as an on the job trained assistant.

Linette Schmitt, CDA, LDA, MADAA
Linette Schmitt is a graduate from the ADA accredited dental assisting program at Hibbing Community College. Linette currently works as a chairside assistant in a large group practice. She is a MN Licensed Dental Assistant and a Certified Dental Assistant, and is also certified to administer nitrous oxide analgesia. She is a member of the American Dental Assistants Association, and holds an ADAA Mastership.

She has served in many capacities at the local and state levels of her association level, and as ADAA Seventh District Trustee. Linette is legislatively involved with the MN Board of Dentistry’s Policy Committee.


Upon completion of this course, the dental professional should be able to:
• Differentiate between preventative and therapeutic hygiene procedures.
• Explain the advantages and disadvantages of amalgam versus composite resin in restorative materials.
• Explain what a CEREC restoration is and list its advantages and disadvantages.
• Describe the two types of sealant materials.
• Understand the benefits of sealant placement in children.
• Explain what limitations insurance companies may pose on sealant placement.
• Discuss the difference between a sealant and a posterior preventative restoration.
• Differentiate between fixed and removable prosthodontics.
• Discuss when ceramic crowns may be contraindicated.
• Define the term porcelain veneer.
• Explain the differences between a Maryland bridge and a traditional three-unit bridge.
• Contrast the differences between ceramic, porcelain fused-to-metal, and gold crowns.
• Identify the various types of removable prostheses.
• Explain what types of procedures each of the dental specialties perform.
• Differentiate between a traditional denture and an immediate denture.
• Explain some advantages and disadvantages of implants.
• Define three types of extractions.
• Describe a common side effect of whitening.
• Define an abscess.
• Describe when endodontic treatment is necessary.
• Understand when various types of images are used during a radiographic procedure.
• Give three examples of equivalent exposure to x-ray radiation.
• Explain ways in which the community is protected from unnecessary radiation exposure.
• Differentiate between disinfection and sterilization.
• Understand the need for infection control procedures and how they impact scheduling.
• State the levels of Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs”.
• Identify the considerations of special needs of patients for scheduling.
• Understand how to schedule appointments to assure smooth patient flow, to maximize productivity, and to make effective use of practice time.
• Demonstrate how to create, maintain and use a scheduling template with preferred units of time for each commonly performed procedure: new patient visits, crown and bridge work, medical conditions, etc.
• Describe how to schedule appointments, gather necessary information, and confirm appointments.
• Discuss how to establish an appointment series for a patient for specific procedures allowing sufficient laboratory working time between visits and allowing proper chair time at each visit.
• Explain how to manage changed appointments including broken and cancelled appointments.
• Explain how to use a call list to fill open schedule times.
• Describe how to create a daily schedule to be posted in treatment areas.
• Explain how to assemble records needed for each patient visit.


The ADAA has an obligation to disseminate knowledge in the field of dentistry.  Sponsorship of a continuing education program by the ADAA does not necessarily imply endorsement of a particular philosophy, product or technique.

The ADAA cautions participants taking this course on the hazards of using limited knowledge when integrating new techniques into their practices.

Credits earned upon completion of the course may be used to meet DANB’s Recertification Requirements.


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