Monday, September 30, 2019

Gillette, Wyoming Hospital Campbell County Health Down from Ransomware


Ransomeware continues to be the scourge of the healthcare IT world.  It seems I cannot do any kind of search these days without coming across a recent article that describes a healthcare institution dealing with a security issue; especially Ransomware.

Here is the information that the hospital has released publicly:

On Friday, September 20 at approximately 3:30 am, Campbell County Health experienced a computer service disruption that was later identified as ransomware. Like many health systems throughout the country, CCH has fallen prey to a very sophisticated criminal attack. The ransomware affected our computer system and our ability to provide some clinical services. Our patients are our highest priority, and we immediately began working with third-party cyber security experts and law enforcement. At this time the investigation is ongoing.

CCH continues working hard to restore our computer systems so we can resume normal operations. We understand response to these attacks can be frustrating for everyone in the community, but we have to be methodical in our response, to insure no remnants of the malware remain on the system. We are doing everything in our power to resolve this as quickly as possible. Thank you for your patience.

UPDATE: September 29, 2019, 12:00 pm
NO EMAIL and limited FAX capabilities. Please call the respective areas with communications. CCH’s main phone line is 307.688.1000 and is able to transfer calls.
CCH has been assured by local, state and federal experts (FBI, Homeland Security, Cyber Security experts) that there is no evidence that any patient or employee information has been compromised. Out of respect for the ongoing criminal investigation we are not able to provide details. Our primary goal is to provide outstanding care to our patients and restore our system as quickly as possible.

Pharmacies can fax orders to a secure fax line - 688.5074, please include a cover sheet with a specific department name.

Lab is seeing limited outpatient case at this time including necessary routine bloodwork. There is not any walk-in wellness bloodwork. Please contact your medical provider regarding your bloodwork needs

Radiology is not open for outpatients. They are providing limited services for Emergency Department , PROS and Walk-In Clinic only.
As of Sunday, September 29, the following services are open and are taking patients during normal business hours. It is advised to call to confirm your appointment prior to going in. All patients are also asked to bring medication bottles with them to their appointment.

Obviously this has created a *serious* disruption for the hospital, but more importantly for the patients they serve.  While the criminals look upon these situations as “profit centers” they fail to see (or simply do not care) that their actions are affecting real people and their care.  These types of criminal acts may very well cause deaths.  If that is the case, I feel the perpetrators should be charged with murder.  This isn’t only about lost revenue for the facility or data security, although both of those things are certainly affected.  This is about the well being of patients.  This cat and mouse game will continue until the perpetrators do not see a positive aspect to this.

Statistics are indicating that in 2019 Ransomware attacks have doubled in frequency over 2018.  That is according to a recent report released by the McAfee antivirus company.

According to the McAfee report, not only has Ransomware increased 118% in 2019, but the *methods* of attack are changing and becoming more sophisticated:

McAfee researchers observed cybercriminals are still using spear-phishing tactics, but an increasing number of attacks are gaining access to a company that has open and exposed remote access points, such as RDP and virtual network computing (VNC). RDP credentials can be brute-forced, obtained from password leaks, or simply bought in underground markets. Where past ransomware criminals would set up a command and control environment for the ransomware and decryption keys, most criminals now approach victims with ransom notes that include an anonymous email service address, allowing bad actors to remain better hidden.

If you are a doctor or healthcare provider in a private practice and you don’t understand that paragraph above, don’t worry.  That’s what IT professionals are for.  However, it also demonstrates that small clinics *need* IT security and that it cannot be provided without the help of experienced professionals.

I know I’ve mentioned this many times in the past, but the best way to combat a Ransomware attack, is to be prepared with a viable backup.  Then you can simply reformat your hard drives and copy the good data back.  However, this only works IF you have a good backup.  That’s why I trust my backups to DDS Rescue.  

I have been using the system pretty much since they came to the market and I put my head on the pillow at night feeling much less stress about how I would survive a Ransomware attack.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

HealthCare Data Breaches Not So Much About Patient's Health Study Says...


In the continuing battle to keep data safe, many of my friends have asked me “Why does anyone care that Mrs. Jones had a crown done on tooth #29?”  That’s a legitimate question and definitely one that needs answering.  Most doctors, especially those in dentistry don’t understand why it is necessary to spend money on data security when “what we do doesn’t relate to anything in the security world”.

Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth.  While it is true no cares about Mrs. Jones treatment, plenty of criminals care about accessing Mrs. Jones record.  That’s because the record contains a goldmine of data about the individual.  It will contain all pertinent demographic data such as address, SSN, birthday, driver’s license number, potentially credit card info, and much more.

And THAT is what criminals are looking for.  This data is why anyone who stores this demographic data needs to do all they can to protect it.  A recent Reuters article details the “why” is to the hacking of medical records and all the data they contain...

More than 70% of healthcare data breaches in the U.S. have involved sensitive demographic or financial information that could fuel identity theft, a new study suggests.
When a healthcare company is hacked, criminals gain access not only to health information, but also to demographic and financial data that could compromise patients’ privacy and financial security, researchers from the Michigan State and Johns Hopkins report.

Media reports often focus on the numbers of patients affected by these breaches, but what may be more important is the kind of data that has been stolen, they write in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Theft of medical data may not affect patients much because there isn’t a big market for it, said the study’s lead author, Xuefeng Jiang, a professor of accounting and information systems at the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University.
“But social security numbers, credit card numbers and demographic data (such as names, birth dates, and other personal identifiers) can be sold on the dark web,” Jiang said. “The main message for hospitals and health care providers is, if you have limited resources to safeguard information, you should put more emphasis on the sensitive kinds of information that can be sold on the dark web.”

For patients, the advice is to look past the numbers in media reports and focus on what types of information have been compromised, Jiang said.

To take a closer look at the kinds of data that get stolen in healthcare data hacks, Jiang and his coauthor pored over U.S. Department of Health and Human Services records on breaches that occurred between 2009 and 2019.

The HHS requires all health plans, health care clearing houses and health care providers to notify the agency after a hack and it publishes information online whenever a breach affects 500 or more people.

After examining the hacks of 1,461 healthcare organizations, the researchers found that all involved at least one piece of demographic data. In 964 breaches, which affected 150 million patients, sensitive information, including social security numbers, drivers’ license numbers, and dates of birth, was compromised. Those breaches accounted for 66% of the hacks examined by the researchers.

A total of 513 breaches, or 35%, left service or financial information vulnerable. In 186 of the 513, which affected 49 million patients, compromised sensitive financial information, including credit card and bank account numbers.

Overall, 71% of the hacks that occurred over the 10-year study period, affecting 159 million patients, compromised sensitive demographic or financial information that could be used in identity theft and financial fraud, the researchers concluded.

The new study is “important,” said Michael Pencina, a professor of biostatistics and bioinformatics and vice dean for data science and information technology at the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina.

“They make a good point that we need to care as much about the type of information that is hacked as the number of individuals affected,” Pencina said. “Still, whether it’s medical, demographic or financial information, that’s the stuff I don’t want in somebody else’s hands.”

As hacks become increasingly common, IT specialists debate the best way to keep data safe, Pencina said. “Is it safer to have data stored on a server locally or does it make more sense to store everything using the cloud,” he said.

While the companies offering cloud storage might be bigger targets, they also have more tools to protect against hacking, Pencina said.

SOURCE: Annals of Internal Medicine, online September 23, 2019.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

DMG Supports First CTC Academy Special Needs Dentistry Forum


DMG today announced its support, in partnership with Project Accessible Oral Health, Henry Schein Cares, the Rutgers School of Dental Medicine and Colgate, of the CTC Academy’s inaugural special needs dentistry forum. The event will take place on Friday, November 1, 2019 at the Academy’s
Oakland, New Jersey campus.

The CTC Academy is a non-profit organization that provides educational and therapeutic
services for students with a diverse array of developmental disabilities through its
collaborative educational program and support services for students and families.

In alignment with CTC’s organizational mission, the forum will bring awareness to the
importance of providing children and adults with special needs effective, regular dental care.
Clinicians and dental staff in the greater NY/NJ area are invited to this free event to learn
the communications and interpersonal skills needed to deliver effective treatment to
patients with special needs.

In addition, the free event will offer attendees 4 Continuing Education Unit credits. Dental
professionals interested in attending can learn more about the event and register online at:
Special Needs Dentistry Forum page.

The inaugural forum is intended for general and pediatric dentists, dental office staff, dental
hygienists and dental assistants in the Greater New Jersey area, including New York and
neighboring states. Highlights of the event include:

• A complimentary 4 CEU credit course
• Important insights from Clinical Professor of Pediatric Dentistry and special needs
advocate, Dr. Steven Perlman, Registered and Licensed Occupational Therapist,
Dr. Laura Bejot, Special Needs Dentist, Dr. Tom Ballesteros and leader of the
Special Care Treatment Center at the Rutgers School of Dental Medicine, Dr. Evan

  • A tour of the state-of-the-art CTC Academy facility to see how it provides education, occupational and other therapies for students and housing opportunities and workforce assistance for adults

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

AI Will be Changing Diagnostic Procedures Sooner than You Think...


A huge push in the AI field is medical diagnosis and soon we will be seeing this move into dentistry.  

If you happen to use Google Photos to help keep track of all the pictures you take with your phone, try a little experiment.  Think of an event where you’ve taken pictures or a certain subject such as a pet.  Then open the Google Photos app on your phone and in the search bar type in what you are looking for… such as “cat”.  Within a few seconds your phone will display every picture of a cat that resides in your photo collection.  If you’ve never tried this, you should.  It is flat out amazing.  That is simply an easy demonstration of what the Google AI algorithm can do.

Now Google and other companies are taking that algorithm or others like it and are applying it to healthcare images.  Recently it was announced that the Google AI system identified lung cancer with a remarkable  94.4% accuracy.  The amazing thing is that the accuracy is also combined with the speed of computer processing.  According to the article I read "When an earlier scan was available, the AI and the radiologists performed equally well in detecting cancers, but in the second study, the AI outperformed the human doctors with fewer false positives and fewer false negatives.”  That is flat out amazing.  Evaluating x-rays, CAT scans, pathology slides and many other diagnostic realms unfortunately is a bit of a subjective art and requires years of training to attain the skill to quickly and accurately evaluate and process the data.  AI can do this much faster and learns at the rate of a computer.

One of the great things about this is that a computer doesn’t provide a subjective evaluation.  It simply processes the data and makes an educated recommendation.  This is NOT diagnosis, it is DATA points.  What the humans in charge choose to do with that data is up to them.

Now in dentistry we are seeing a remarkable effort to use AI to help in reading radiographs.  After taking standard bitewing radiographs, an AI algorithm can then analyze them and quickly identify areas that the doctor should evaluate.  Imagine having a second set of well educated eyes that can identify area of interest or help you decide whether an area is suspicious or not.  The doctor can agree or disagree with the indicated information and the system will learn from the input, just like a student.

A company called DentistryAI has been working for a while on such a system and it shows definite promise.  For the past 18 months I have been having my radiographs analyzed by their AI system and it quickly became something I cannot do without.  The company is making rapid progress and I anticipate seeing an industry announcement for sales in the not too distant future.  AI is rapidly changing lots of things in our everyday lives and our professions and it is becoming so ubiquitous that often times we don’t even know it is there.  However, get ready for it to make some serious changes in healthcare in the very near future.

Monday, September 23, 2019

TEDx Salt Lake City - Time Well Spent


I’ve just returned from TEDx Salt Lake City 2019 and I am super excited about the experience.  If you have ever watched any of the hundreds of TED talks online, you know what I’m talking about.

TED conferences bring together a myriad of different subjects and speakers are given 20 minutes to give the audience an incredible amount of info about whatever subject they are an expert on.

Here is the description straight from the TED website:

TED is a nonpartisan nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks. TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — in more than 110 languages. Meanwhile, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world.

I spent the day learning incredible things from incredible people and then afterwards I was lucky enough to get a chance to spend some time talking with some of the speakers and learning even more.  Also, this isn’t just about learning, it is an *event*!   Held at Kingsbury Hall on the University of Utah campus, the breaks throughout the day allowed attendees to go outside and enjoy food trucks, dancers, scientific exhibits, and more.  The only way to really appreciate what these events are all about is to attend one in person.

Attending a TED Conference has been on my bucket list for a few years now.  I had originally thought that the meetings were something reserved for special individuals, but it turns out that all you need is a desire to learn and to purchase a ticket.  You can either visit the  TEDx Salt Lake website or you can go to the main TED website for ALL the details.  

Here are people and bios of those who brought me so much education on Saturday:

Cathy Callow-Heusser
Instructional Designer and Educational Researcher
Cathy Callow-Heusser started her career as a software engineer. She coded expert systems and multimedia applications while earning degrees in Instructional Design and Educational Research and Evaluation. She has worn many hats, but her happy place is teaching math. Cathy prefers to teach students who have traditionally struggled in math because she loves watching attitude changes as students become successful. The best decade of her career involved evaluating the Bureau of Indian Education’s (BIE) Reading First program and subsequent initiatives in literacy and math, as well as providing technical assistance to help teachers improve reading and math instruction. During this time, she and her teams traveled to 86 BIE schools throughout the US, which cemented her passion for honoring cultures and languages. Representation MATTERS! Cathy is the proud mom of 2 biological, 2 adopted, and 3 bonus children. She and her husband Val have 10 grandchildren.

Connor Behr
Molecular Biology Student
Connor Behr is currently a student at BYU PathwayConnect in pursuit of a degree in molecular biology, which he has loved and studied since he was 12 years old. He is skilled in the field and has experience shadowing at ARUP Laboratories and a summer internship at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. Connor received the Emperor Science Award in 2017 for his research in cancer development and treatment, and he conducted related gene and protein expression projects with Physarum polycephalum, an organism he has been studying for more than 9 years. He is currently heading a campaign called the PhyR Project for the development of an alternative insulin production technique.

Cynthia Bee
Conservational Landscape Architect
Cynthia works to translate the technical nature of landscaping into public friendly messaging as the Outreach Coordinator for the Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District's Conservation Garden Park. Whether it's teaching landscape classes to homeowners or creating digital and social media marketing content, she's learned how homeowners think about landscaping-and how to influence them. Cynthia earned her Bachelor's Degree in Landscape Architecture from Utah State University and has spent more than 20 years working in different sectors of the green industry.

David Kozlowski
Marriage & Family Therapist
David Kozlowski obtained a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology from National University in San Diego. Since 1999, David has worked as a counselor, behavioral specialist, mental health worker, and therapist in group homes, crisis treatment centers, psychiatric hospitals, drug addiction facilities, and schools for severely emotionally disturbed kids and teens. David has his own private practice, is the Host of the Light The Fight podcast, and is the Executive Director of the Non Profit Quit Trip’n.

Denise Druce
Yoga Instructor
For nearly four decades, Denise Druce has been inspiring people to live healthier, happier lives. She calls herself an Elevator…when you’re around her, you’re going up! Denise has taught a wide variety of fitness classes over the years, from step to indoor cycling to her current and lasting love, yoga. She teaches her students to stand at the “Soft Edge of the Hard Place” in fitness and in life. Her non-profit Yoga Forward is "taking yoga where it isn’t"…prisons, shelters, schools, and shopping malls. She has a Masters Degree in Public Health, is a Yoga Alliance E-RYT500, and is a breast cancer Thriver. She spends most weekends on the road, making the world a better place by getting more people trained to teach yoga everywhere. Denise and her husband, Michael live in Salt Lake City with their three boys.

Dr. Joey Wilson
Engineer and Entrepreneur
Dr. Joey Wilson is an acclaimed engineer and entrepreneur, focused on the field of sensing people using radio waves. Dr. Wilson’s breakthrough doctoral work on detecting and locating movement using wireless networks at the University of Utah has earned worldwide attention. Dr. Wilson is now the founder and CEO of XANDEM, a company focused on high-tech radio frequency sensors for applications like energy efficiency, elder care, healthcare and security. XANDEM was the first to research, design, and ship a product that utilizes everyday wireless networks to accurately detect and locate moving people within buildings. Joey and his team are now helping other businesses turn existing wireless devices into powerful people-sensing systems. In his free time, you can find Joey throwing a disc with his wife and two sons on the grassy fields near their home in Salt Lake City, finger picking his guitar, backcountry skiing through the trees, or trail running in the beautiful mountains of Utah.

Dr. Ruby Chou
Executive Director, Mundi Project
Dr. Ruby Chou is an arts executive, classical pianist, and educator. Ruby advocates for open access to pianos, music education, and innovative performances as the executive director of Mundi Project, a Utah-based nonprofit community music organization. Mundi Project is launching Utah’s first intergenerational music program at Neighborhood House in October. As an educator, she mentors 21st-century musicians as adjunct professor of piano and music entrepreneurship at Weber State University and specializes in teaching youth and adults in various learning environments. Ruby performs locally and nationally with professional, amateur, and young musicians. Ruby also serves on the board of directors for Utah Nonprofits Association. Dr. Chou earned a doctoral degree in Music and Human Learning from The University of Texas at Austin. She graduated from Manhattan School of Music in NYC with a master’s degree in piano performance and a Bachelor of Music degree from The University of Utah.

Dr. Taylor Sparks
Associate Professor of Materials Science and Engineering
Dr. Taylor Sparks is an Associate Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Utah. He is originally from Utah and an alumni of the department he now teaches in. He did his MS in Materials at UCSB and his PhD in Applied Physics at Harvard University and then did a postdoc in the Materials Research Laboratory at UCSB. He is currently the Director of the Materials Characterization Lab at the University of Utah and teaches classes on ceramics, materials science, characterization, and technology commercialization. His current research centers on the discovery, synthesis, characterization, and properties of new materials for energy applications. He is a pioneer in the emerging field of materials informatics whereby big data, data mining, and machine learning are leveraged to solve challenges in materials science. When he’s not in the lab you can find him running his podcast “Materialism” or canyoneering with his 3 kids in southern Utah.

Em Capito
Em Capito is an unconventional psychotherapist obsessed with the widespread loss of resilience in the face of overwhelming comfort. While studying her own trauma from the inside out, Em embarked on a series of experiments that led to a prescription for intentional discomfort. Em blends these experiential interventions with meditation and yoga therapy to build the holistic mind-body resilience that carries us through our darkest moments. She completed a master’s degree in social work at the University of Utah in 2007 and a master’s degree in business administration at the University of Phoenix in 2011. Em is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, a certified LifePower yoga teacher, and a Dharana Method meditation teacher with a private practice in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Foreign Figures
Foreign Figures’ alternative take on pop music stems from the four very different humans that create it together: EJ, Steve, Seth and Jonny T. Formed in late 2014, the Utah band has achieved millions of streams online, received licensing deals from Fox, MTV and Fox Sports, and taken their charismatic live show to over half of the United States. The band’s sound and synergy comes from their desire to create something unique together that they couldn’t or wouldn’t create on their own. They view their creative differences and skills as something to celebrate, and collaboration as something special. The band name is a synonym for authenticity and imagination, which comes through lyrically in many of their songs, breaking down the culture of choosing sides. Everyone is a foreign figure to someone else in the world—if you’re unlike anyone else, then you’re a foreign figure.

Gerald Elias
Musician, Author, Conductor, Composer
Gerald Elias leads a dual life as an internationally acclaimed musician and award-winning author. A former violinist with the Boston Symphony and associate concertmaster of the Utah Symphony, Elias, performer, conductor, composer, and teacher has concertized on five continents. He has been music director of the Vivaldi by Candlelight chamber series in Salt Lake City since 2004. His Daniel Jacobus mystery series takes place in the dark corners of the music world where greed, ambition and lust lurk backstage. His debut novel, Devil’s Trill, was a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. Two others have been recorded as unique audio books in which Elias performs musical clues. Elias has also authored a children’s story, Maestro, the Potbellied Pig. His 2018 essay, “War & Peace. And Music,” won 1st prize from the Utah Division of Arts & Museums. Elias resides in Salt Lake City and West Stockbridge, Massachusetts.

Jaxon Willard
Dancer, Choreographer
Jaxon Willard dances at Center Stage Performing Arts Studio. He currently trains in numerous styles of dance, including Jazz, Contemporary, Hip-Hop, Ballet, Musical Theater and Ballroom. Jaxon has been dancing since before he could walk. He was a quick study and loved music and to move. He started choreographing early on as well. He made the Brigham Young University Youth Ballroom team when he was 12, but after much thought and heartache, he began his formal training for all styles of dance and dance company involvement. At his very first Nationals competition, the Dance Awards Vegas 2016, he placed in the Top 10 for the Best Dancer. The following year at the Dance Awards Nationals Vegas 2017, he was honored to be named the First-Runner Up for The Best Dancer, with a self-choreographed piece. Jaxon feels blessed to have the opportunity to have found something that brings him such happiness and allows him to express himself in a profound and positive way.

Jessica Baynes
Founder, Healing in Motion Dance
Jessica Baynes attended the University of Utah, where she received her BFA in Modern Dance. Jessica sustained a Traumatic Brain Injury during her freshman year and underwent almost two years of intensive rehabilitation to regain quality of motor function. During that time, she experienced social isolation, stigmatization, and loss of identity as a result of her injury. Since recovering, Jessica founded Healing in Motion Dance, an arts and medicine initiative that teaches rehabilitative ballet classes to participants with neurological conditions that impair neuromuscular function such as Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson's Disease, and stroke. Her goals with the program are to physically strengthen and emotionally empower others with motor function inhibiting diagnoses, through ballet. Healing in Motion Dance serves as a platform on which collegiate dance and physical therapy students collaborate by designing adaptive ballet classes for patients in their local healthcare system.

Josh Taylor
Creative Change Agent
Josh Taylor is a filmmaker, designer, writer, art director, and creative strategist, but at his core, he is a Creative Change Agent and Business Storyteller. He helps companies in the midst of pivotal change/transformation moments, discover, craft and share their own stories through creative content, experiences, and workshops, in order to help their employees and customers build stronger emotional engagement and human connection to the business and its journey.

Karen Burns
Assistant Director, Intermountain Therapy Animals
After working in the corporate world for many years, Karen Burns found her true passion in a non-profit organization, Intermountain Therapy Animals (ITA). Karen is the Assistant Director of ITA and manages Reading Education Assistance Dogs (R.E.A.D.) Programs in 30 (and growing) schools and libraries in the state of Utah. She has partnered with three different therapy animals over the past two decades, and is also a licensed ITA Workshop Instructor and R.E.A.D. Instructor. Karen enjoys traveling around the country and internationally training others to use our literacy support program, R.E.A.D., in their communities. Karen remains passionate about sharing the gifts our four-footed friends can offer people during difficult times in their lives. They offer hope, healing, fun and a sense of normalcy in settings where that is rarely otherwise possible.

Kotryna Liepinyte
Kotryna Liepinyte is a former undergraduate student from the University of Utah with a BA in English Literature and Communications. She was born in Kaunas, Lithuania and is passionate about honoring her foreign culture and engaging in conversation about immigration stereotypes. Kotryna's mission is to provide an open dialogue about the representation of immigrants in local and global news. Kotryna intends to pursue her education and passion by attending law school. She also enjoys traveling around the world and experiencing a variety of cultures.

LeBaron Family
Singing Family
The LeBaron family was brought to the limelight when a casual recording of their family karaoke night went viral. Dennise LeBaron had requested that her children make her a video of them singing “One Day More.” The LeBaron children and their spouses all love to sing, so they happily complied. The video was posted to Facebook, and by the end of the week, it had over 8 million views! When the children were very young, they showed themselves to be extremely musical and eager to perform. Mom and Dad, musicians themselves, were pleased to instruct them in the hope that sharing music would create strong bonds between their children. After the oldest daughter, Holli passed away in 2002, the remaining siblings have prolonged her legacy through music. The family attributes its closeness to the memory of Holli and her deep appreciation for music and their family’s religious faith. The LeBarons hope to not only share their music with the world, but make everyone who hears it feel like family.

Rob Landes
Take a classically-trained violinist who began studying at the age of 3, add two music performance degrees, include a loop pedal and a dash of humor, and you have Rob Landes. Rob Landes has become a sensation on both YouTube and Bilibili (China’s most popular short-video platform) for his combination of video game music, pop music, comedy, and costumes. With over 1.6 Million subscribers worldwide and 160 million views online, Rob has delighted diverse audiences with hundreds of musical covers. As to his live performances, Rob Landes has opened for T-Pain, Rachel Platten, and Jason DeRulo, while also having performed at New York Fashion Week, Carnegie Hall, the Sundance Film Festival, throughout Europe, Northern Africa, Southeast Asia, and now TEDxSaltLakeCity!

Thursday, September 19, 2019

DDS Rescue Announces Their Response to the RansomWare Attack of August 26


I want to make perfectly clear in this post that the company DDS Rescue was in no way involved with the attack mentioned in this post.  In fact if one of their customers had been affected by the breach, DDS Rescue would have had them back up and running quickly.  No, this is their response to those offices who have heard of the attack and are looking for reliable solutions to help prevent being affected by these types of attacks in the future.  DDS Rescue protects the data in my office and I trust them completely with my office data.


CARLSBAD, CA—On Monday, August 26, 2019, a Ransomware attack was pushed
out to more than 400 dental offices throughout the United States. This Ransomware
attack was associated with the companies PercSoft, The Digital Dental Record
and DDS Safe.

DDS Rescue is issuing this statement to confirm that their company is not associated
with any of these companies and has not been attacked by Ransomware.

DDS Rescue customers are protected and all data is secure. As cybersecurity professionals, DDS Rescue does everything it can to maintain customers’ data protection on a daily basis.

Since this most recent attack occurred, DDS Rescue has been in touch with many
dental offices, and they are encouraging customers to continue to ask them questions
about the nature of Ransomware attacks and cybersecurity.

DDS Rescue has a number of procedures in place that prevent the type of Ransomware attacks that have happened in recent months.

For further information visit or phone DDS Rescue
at (800) 998-9048.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Primescan Review & Feedback After 200 Days in the Wild


For those of you who are interested in digital scanning/digital impressions in your office, there are a lot of options out there for you.  At this point in the development cycle, all of these systems work extremely well.  I feel that ownership choices are now based on features, manufacturers, and relationships.  By that I mean some systems offer different features, some are made by more well known companies, and the relationship with the company/sales person can be a deciding factor for many offices.

Today’s post is some information from Dentsply Sirona regarding their newest system Primescan.  Sirona has been in the digital acquisition space for decades with CEREC and are now releasing their latest next generation technology.  Here is info from the company regarding the first 200 days of Primescan in the field.  Enjoy!

It is standard practice to review feedback after a product has first
been launched: Primescan, Dentsply Sirona’s new intraoral scanner,
was introduced about 200 days ago. It provides dentists in more
than 100 countries with a completely new experience of taking
digital impressions. The feedback after the first months in practice
shows that Primescan was able to meet and even exceed the high
expectations of demanding users.

With Primescan, Dentsply Sirona presented the latest generation of intraoral scanners at the
beginning of February in Frankfurt/Main (Germany): It enables users to take a digital impression with very high accuracy. This has been substantiated by a study at the University of Zurich [1]. Since the launch of this new intraoral scanner users in more than 100 countries have been using Primescan in their practices and reporting on their experiences.

For dentist Dr. Carlos Repullo from Sevilla, Spain, the perfect end result for the patient has top priority. For several years now, he has relied on the support of digital procedures such as CAD/CAM. From his point of view, the technology of intraoral scanners has developed enormously –
this is especially true for Primescan. "The accuracy of the scan is remarkable. This also applies to the whole jaw scan, which can be taken in a very short time. This is exactly the quality that we need in practices. The handling must be simple, fast and safe, the function must be stable.
The new intraoral scanner offers all this. Primescan does have a small 'disadvantage': "If the  restoration does not fit now, I can no longer blame the technology."

Primescan meets very high quality standards

For quite some time, Dr. Mike Skramstad, dentist from Orono, Minnesota (USA), has been observing the development of intraoral scanners in the dental market. For a long time, no system was able to fully meet his high requirements in terms of accuracy, user-friendliness, speed, integration
capability and possible applications. He also took a close look at Primescan in his practice. 200 days after the new intraoral scanner’s launch, he is now more than satisfied: "With the introduction of Dentsply Sirona's Primescan, things have changed considerably. Scanning is very easy and more accurate than with the CEREC Omnicam. What impresses me most about Primescan is the outstanding software performance, which has been further enhanced by artificial intelligence.
I'm excited about the many dental applications that allow me to work with Primescan."

Dr. Verena Freier, a dentist from Bad-Soden in Germany, sees an improvement in the accuracy of Primescan, especially for whole jaw scans. " With the new intraoral scanner Primescan, which also works with CEREC, I am bringing the treatment of my patients to a very high level. If the results were really good before, for me they are now even better. And everything is easy and relaxed - I don't really want to put the scanner out of my hand anymore. I particularly like the operation via a touch surface. Since patient satisfaction is very important to me, I am especially pleased that patients ask specifically for this impression method and talk about it once they have experienced it themselves.”

Primescan improves workflow with dental laboratories

In addition to accurate and fast digital impression taking, another advantage of Primescan is that it is designed for different digital workflows – in practice with CEREC as well as in collaboration with the
dental laboratory or other partners. Using the new Connect software, a digital 3D model can be transferred directly to the laboratory of choice for further processing. Frankie Acosta, a dental technician from Murrieta, California (USA), is particularly pleased with the optimized processes and
the high quality of the impression. "As a dental laboratory that has been working with digital impressions for around ten years, we are delighted that it is now even easier for dentists to take impressions with an intraoral scanner. The accuracy with which Primescan works convinces us in our
daily work. This also enables us to deliver work at a high level. The automatic download from the Inbox of the Connect Case Center is a real time saver".

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Garrison Launches NEW Matrix Bands that done "Crinkle"


One of the biggest problems we face in every day operative dentistry is the proper restoration of Class II restorations.  As we have become more and more conservative in our restorations, we are no longer following preparation principles that were developed for amalgam.  With composite rapidly becoming like “replacement tooth structure” our prep designs have become smaller.  This is a great thing in that it conserves tooth structure, but it can cause a great deal of procedural angst when it comes to placing matrix bands.  That’s because as preps become smaller, there is less “gap” to slide bands into.  To the rescue comes the New Composi-Tight® 3D Fusion™ Firm matrix bands with eZ-Place™ technology.

They go to place much easier than standard bands and also don’t “crinkle” up when applying the separating ring.  I’ve been testing them for 2 weeks now and am very impressed with them.  Here’s what the folks at Garrison have to say:

New Composi-Tight® 3D Fusion™ Firm matrix bands with eZ-Place™ technology maintain their shape during placement making them significantly easier to insert.

eZ-Place™ technology combines specially processed stainless steel with a proprietary matrix band forming process to yield Fusion Firm's remarkable handling characteristics. It resists deformation nearly 70% better than typical dead-soft bands, yet is pre-contoured and super thin at 0.0015". You're ensured the tight contacts and ideal anatomy you've come to expect from the Composi-Tight® 3D Fusion™system.

Composi-Tight 3D Fusion Firm matrices are:
  • Nearly 70% better at resisting deformation
  • Super-thin at only 0.0015"
  • Four ideal sizes
Perfect for:
  • Tight interproximal spaces
  • More conservative preps
  • First-time users and veterans alike

Monday, September 16, 2019

Dentsply Sirona and Carbon® Launch Lucitone Digital Print Denture Workflow and Material System, Taking Digital Dentistry to the Next Level


Dentsply Sirona, the largest manufacturer of professional dental
products and technologies, and Carbon®, the world’s leading digital
manufacturing company, announced the launch of Lucitone Digital
Print Denture workflow and material system today – optimized for
the Carbon M-Series printers. The partnership brings to market the
first digitally produced dentures with Dentsply Sirona material and
Crafted by Carbon. This system will significantly change digital
dentistry in terms of strength, aesthetics, and laboratory efficiency
for 3D printed dentures.

A new premium digitally printable denture workflow and material system was launched today by
Dentsply Sirona and Carbon. It provides significant advancements in
terms of material benefits, the laboratory process, and function for the
patient. The new workflow and material system establish a paradigm shift
for 3D printed prostheses. Carbon is the only platform validated for
Dentsply Sirona’s Lucitone Digital Print Denture materials which provide
a superior combination of accuracy, consistency, and throughput
compared to traditional dentures. The system is intended to be used in
cases of complete single arch denture over existing dentition (1 arch),
and full-over-full dentures (2 arches).

The new Dentsply Sirona 3D printed workflow with Carbon includes five
core material system products: Lucitone Digital PrintTM 3D Denture Resin,
IPN 3DTM Digital Denture Teeth, Lucitone Digital Try-inTM 3D Trial
Placement Resin, Lucitone Digital FuseTM 3-Step system, and inLab
SpeedcureTM Processing Unit. This material and equipment system is
used as part of a complete digital print workflow that includes cloud-
based traceable printing for each denture, taking digitally printed dentures
to a whole new level.

Complete material system for increased capacity and laboratory

Dentsply Sirona developed this new system, leveraging Carbon printer
technology, that delivers a significant advancement to the industry in
terms of material benefits and laboratory process. The Lucitone Digital
PrintTM 3D Denture Resin enables labs to print up to eight denture arches
in approximately two hours. Dentures made with Lucitone Digital PrintTM
3D Denture Resin resist breakage because its innovative formula
exceeds ISO high impact and flexural strength standards. The proven
Lucitone formulation is manufactured with True Color Technology, for
consistent shade results, and is available in five Lucitone shades. The

Registered brands, trade names and logos are used. Even in particular cases, when they appear without their trademark, all corresponding legal rules and provisions apply.

Press Contact

Dr. Tanja Lauinger
Senior Corporate Public Relations Manager
Dentsply Sirona
Sirona Straße 1
5071 Wals bei Salzburg, Austria
T +43 (0) 662 2450-629
F +43 (0) 662 2450-540

Iska Hain Saric
Head of Communications Carbon

Kerstin Schicha
Edelman GmbH Schöneberger Straße 15 10963 Berlin, Germany
T +49 (0) 30 2218290-70

new Dentsply Sirona workflow for Carbon delivers value by increasing
laboratory product capacity and throughput while decreasing the amount
of labor per appliance.

The Lucitone Digital Print Denture features IPN 3D Digital Denture teeth
along with the Lucitone Digital FuseTM 3-Step system to provide premium
esthetics and IPN durability with a cohesive bond. The 3-step Fuse
process allows technicians of varying abilities and experience to set and
fuse up to 14 denture teeth in less than 12 minutes.

With this new digital workflow, laboratories of all sizes can design a
Dentsply Sirona Lucitone Digital Print Denture and gain the capacity and
throughput that is needed to meet increasing patient demand. The
workflow is simple and easy for labs to integrate into their existing digital

The Lucitone Digital Print Denture was FDA cleared on August 26, 2019
and will be available in the USA as of September 2019 to early access
partners with a full launch to Carbon M-Series users in the USA expected
in Q1 2020. Due to the different approval and registration times, not all
technologies and products are immediately available in all countries.

Dentsply Sirona and Carbon will present the details of this new system
and other topics to the public for the first time at the International Digital
Denture Symposium (IDDS) in Atlanta, Georgia USA on September 27 &
28, 2019. More Information about the IDDS program is available at:

To learn more about Lucitone Digital Print Denture, visit

Here is how the denture bases appear as they are in the finishing stages inside the 3D printer...

About Dentsply Sirona

Dentsply Sirona is the world’s largest manufacturer of professional dental products and technologies, with over a century of innovation and service to the dental industry and patients worldwide. Dentsply Sirona develops, manufactures, and markets a comprehensive solutions offering, including dental and oral health products, as well as other consumable medical devices under a strong portfolio of world-class brands. As The Dental Solutions CompanyTM, Dentsply Sirona’s products provide innovative, high-quality and effective solutions to advance patient care and deliver better, safer and faster dental care. Dentsply Sirona’s headquarter is located in Charlotte, North Carolina. The company’s shares are listed in the United States on NASDAQ under the symbol XRAY. Visit for more information about Dentsply Sirona and its products.

About Carbon

Carbon’s mission is to reinvent how polymer products are designed, engineered, manufactured, and delivered towards a digital and sustainable future. Based in Silicon Valley, Carbon brings together innovations in software, hardware, and material science to deliver industry-leading digital manufacturing solutions. Crafted by Carbon using ground-breaking Digital Light SynthesisTM technology and broad family of programmable liquid resins, manufacturers can unlock new business opportunities such as mass customization, on-demand inventory, and previously impossible product designs. The Carbon Platform allows customers to build uniquely differentiated products while reducing waste and time to market. To learn more, visit, like the Carbon Facebook page, or follow Carbon on Instagram and Twitter at @Carbon.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Office of Civil Rights Settles with Bayfront Health for $85,000


Here is a post about HIPAA that doesn’t have to do with hacks or data security.  However, you should still read this because it will hopefully provide some valuable information on how to abide by other provisions of HIPAA.

Part of the HIPAA law structure is the right of patients to receive access to their records in a timely fashion and without being overcharged.  In a recent study, it was found that more than 50% of providers do not follow the law.

To that end, the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights has decided to monitor and enforce this provision of the law.  The moral to this story is that if a patient requests their records, grant them access asap.  The law requires access within 30 days and patients may only be charged a reasonable fee.

In the case sited in the headline of this post, Bayfront Health received a request from a pregnant patient requesting the fetal heart monitor records of her unborn child.  An investigation by OCR (after a complaint was filed by the patient) found that it took 9 months for access to be provided.

Here is the information from HHS:

OCR Settles First Case in HIPAA Right of Access Initiative
Today, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is announcing its first enforcement action and settlement in its Right of Access Initiative.  Earlier this year, OCR announced this initiative promising to vigorously enforce the rights of patients to receive copies of their medical records promptly and without being overcharged.
Bayfront Health St. Petersburg (Bayfront) has paid $85,000 to OCR and has adopted a corrective action plan to settle a potential violation of the right of access provision of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Rules after Bayfront failed to provide a mother timely access to records about her unborn child.  Bayfront, based in St. Petersburg, Florida, is a Level II trauma and tertiary care center licensed as a 480-bed hospital with over 550 affiliated physicians.
OCR initiated its investigation based on a complaint from the mother.  As a result, Bayfront directly provided the individual with the requested health information more than nine months after the initial request. The HIPAA Rules generally require covered health care providers to provide medical records within 30 days of the request and providers can only charge a reasonable cost-based fee.  This right to patient records extends to parents who seek medical information about their minor children, and in this case, a mother who sought prenatal health records about her child.
“Providing patients with their health information not only lowers costs and leads to better health outcomes, it’s the law,” said OCR Director Roger Severino.  “We aim to hold the health care industry accountable for ignoring peoples’ rights to access their medical records and those of their kids.”
In addition to the monetary settlement, Bayfront will undertake a corrective action plan that includes one year of monitoring by OCR. The resolution agreement and corrective action plan may be found at:

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Thoughts from the ADA/FDI Meeting 2019 in San Francisco


I’ve just come back from the ADA/FDI meeting this week and after a couple of days to recover, I gotta tell you, if you were NOT in San Francisco, you *missed one heck of a meeting*!

This years meeting, combining the meetings of the American Dental Association and the World Dental Federation, brought a wide variety of dentists, educators, and companies together.

I was tasked with doing 7 programs over a 3 day period which was both exhilarating and exhausting all at the same time.  However, I was proud of being a part of this incredible opportunity.  Because of the influx of dentists from around the world, I even was given the opportunity to do a multi-speaker program where no one speaker was from the same country.

The Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco was teeming with activity.  The exhibit floor in the Moscone is huge, but dentistry practically filled the entire space.  Several of my speaking responsibilities were in the Cellerant Best of Class area on the show floor, so I had chance to spend quite a bit of time to see how the traffic was in the exhibits.  I’ve got to say that things looked very busy.  There were lots of people strolling the aisles and enjoying seeing the latest and greatest our profession has to offer.

I also got the opportunity to speak with some of the better known and larger vendors and they reported good traffic as well as decent amounts of orders.

If you didn’t get a chance to make the event this year, you really need to mark your calendar for next year in Orlando!  Those of you who didn’t want to travel all the way from the east coast to the west coast will now have the meeting in your half of the country and I’m expecting another meeting full of great things!

It’s fun to see how meetings are evolving.  We are seeing more and more programs that are a bit shorter than in years past, but there are more courses offered in the same amount of time.  This gives people the chance to be introduced to a larger number of subjects and then explore them on a “deeper dive” when they get back home.  With our knowledge base expanding so rapidly I think this “shorter and smarter” way of lecturing is a great way to keep people aware of things changing in the profession without over burdening them with excessive information.  We also got some great feedback and compliments in the Cellerant Best of Class area where CE events were also held.

The moral to this story?  Get ready for Orlando.  The ADA is counting on you!

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Ford Uses New Scooter Purchase and Sensors to Help Make Scooter Drivers Safer


Not too long ago Ford Motor Company acquired a much smaller transportation company… Spin.  While not a direct competitor to Ford, the much smaller company is in the mobility business.  Spin is one of a new generation of companies that are working to make rentable electric scooters available to riders in metropolitan areas.

The difference between the 2 companies, of course, is obvious, but Ford is now making a move to make short distance transportation on 2 wheels considerably safer for the drivers.

Ford has a preexisting research relationship with Virginia Tech and the 2 entities have now agreed to work together on a project/study to evaluate the way users use and interact with a scooter.  The company will be delivering 300 of their electric scooters (e-scooter for short) to the campus.  Mixed in with 250 “normal” scooters will be 50 others that will be used to conduct the research.  Those scooters will be equipped with several sensor types that include gyroscopes, accelerometers, and forward facing cameras.  The idea is that users will take the scooters for a spin and while doing so will provide an influx of data that will then allow researchers to better understand users and their actions.

E-scooters have become incredibly popular in the last 5 years.  There are several companies attempting to capitalize on the idea by providing scooters for rent in areas where their use would be the most valuable.  Places such as inner cities, shopping districts, and universities are suddenly finding scooters in some central locations, but also simply sitting around on the sidewalk available to rent.

As the fad has caught on, injuries are starting to occur and, of course, as the number of users increases, so does the number of injuries.  At this point in time, our knowledge of how we interact with scooters is very limited, but Ford is hoping to use this study to bring in tons of data that, up until now, has not been available to scientists.  The research data can hopefully help scientists to better understand human behavior or scooters as well as ways to make the experience safer whether that is through changing the scooters or better educating the riders.

As we better understand things, smart people can then help the rest of us do what we do even better.

According to Wired magazine:

“We’re looking at how the infrastructure as it’s built and maintained today affects safety and how people ride,” says Mike Mollenhauer, the director of VTTI’s Center for Technology Implementation and the principal investigator on the project. “What leads up to a particular [crash] event, and what could we do to solve that?” Depending on the results, this research could also lead Spin to make hardware changes in its scooters, says Ted Sweeney, a senior manager of public policy for the company. It might change its approach to rider education or find new ways of punishing inconsiderate or risky scooting.

So here’s hoping that this little experiment and study will provide lots of new and exciting information that helps make our world and the way get around in that world a little safer.

Monday, September 9, 2019

DDS Rescue Makes Public Statement Regarding their Data Security


With all of the stories circulating after last weeks Ransomeware attack that took down over 400 offices, industry leader DDS Rescue has released a statement about the event and how their users and clients would no have been affected.

Dear DDS Rescue Customer,

As many of you might have heard, on Monday, August 26, a Ransomware attack was pushed out to hundreds of dental offices associated with PercSoft, The Digital Dental Record, and DDS Safe.

To be clear, DDS Rescue is not associated with any of these companies and has not been attacked by Ransomware.

All of our customers are protected and all data is secure. As your cybersecurity professionals, we do everything we can to maintain your data protection on a daily basis.

Since this attack occurred, we have had a number of offices contact us with questions and we encourage our customers to continue to ask us questions because you are ultimately responsible for your patient data.

Of the many questions that we have received, the most common one is this:

Q: Could this type of attack have happened to DDS Rescue?

A: The simple answer is no.

●     There have been two such attacks on dental offices both through their IT Managed Service Provider in the past two months. In the first case for certain, and most likely in this case as well, the cyber criminals hacked into the companies involved and used their direct connection to remotely send the Ransomware directly into their customers’ servers. DDS Rescue does not maintain any type of open connections with our customers’ servers, which was the mean used in those attacks. You must invite us onto your server each and every time we need access. After we disconnect, the access is dropped and no longer accessible.

●     The DDS Rescue unit runs on a Linux OS and is not part of your Windows domain/workgroup. Our unit does not have any active share folders on your network. As such, attacks on any Windows network would not impact or compromise our device. In addition, a Linux OS is less likely to be targeted in general.

●     Customers’ backed up data is stored in the DDS Rescue unit’s file system, not as an accessible file, adding an additional level of protection. Since each backed up data is encapsulated, an infection cannot spread to previously stored backup files.

As an additional level of security called multi-factor authentication is used on our management databases in order to prevent unauthorized logins.  Any DDS Rescue employee needs to first login and then verify their authority, via a second approved method, in order to ensure no unauthorized access such as from a robot or pushed programs.

Again, please let us know if you have any questions about the integrity of your server or backed up data. And as a reminder, now is the time to take advantage of our full HIPAA Compliance program that is a new value-added service  for your existing account--at no additional charge.

Please contact to get more information about the free HIPAA compliance program.

Convergent Dental Announces New Agreement with Henry Schein, Making the Solea® Dental Laser Available to More US Dental Professionals


Convergent Dental, Inc., developer of Solea®, the industry-leading 9.3 µm CO2 all-tissue dental laser, is excited to announce a new distribution agreement with Henry Schein Dental, the U.S. dental business of Henry Schein, Inc., the world’s largest supplier of health solutions to office-based dental and medical practitioners. The Solea laser is the first and only CO2 laser FDA-cleared to cut hard, soft, and osseous tissue across the US.

“Adding Solea to the market has had a profound effect on dentistry, and we believe our new agreement with Henry Schein will do the same,” stated Michael Cataldo, CEO of Convergent Dental. “Henry Schein is a trusted leader in dental product and technology distribution and this new agreement will help us to provide dental practices nationwide with access to our revolutionary, reliably anesthesia-free laser.”

Known for enabling practitioners to work anesthesia-, blood-, and suture-free, as well as significantly reducing anxiety from procedures, creating better experiences for patients, Solea is dentistry’s number one selling all-tissue dental laser. Although developed with advanced science, the technology is simple to learn and use. With the virtual push of a button, practitioners can guide Solea back and forth between hard, soft, and osseous tissue by adjusting the pressure on its variable speed foot pedal.

“Henry Schein customers rely on us to provide unique products and solutions that save them time and enhance their practices,” said AJ Caffentzis, President, US Dental Distribution, Henry Schein, Inc. “This distribution agreement reinforces our commitment to helping dentists achieve maximum practice efficiency, so they can focus on patient care.”

For more information about Solea, please visit or call 844.GOSOLEA.

About Convergent Dental, Inc.

Convergent Dental, Inc. is a privately owned dental equipment and technology company. Solea® is the only computer-aided, CO2 laser system to be cleared by the FDA for all-tissue indications. With Solea’s unique wavelength and computer controls, dentists can reliably perform procedures anesthesia-free, blood-free, suture-free, and pain-free. Reliably anesthesia-free and blood-free procedures pay huge dividends for patients in the form of a vastly improved dental experience and dentists in terms of significant practice growth. For more information, please visit Follow the company on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.

About Henry Schein, Inc.

Henry Schein, Inc. (Nasdaq:HSIC) is a solutions company for health care professionals powered by a network of people and technology. With approximately 19,000 Team Schein Members worldwide, the Company's network of trusted advisors provides more than 1 million customers globally with more than 300 valued solutions that improve operational success and clinical outcomes. Our Business, Clinical, Technology, and Supply Chain solutions help office-based dental and medical practitioners work more efficiently so they can provide quality care more effectively. These solutions also support dental laboratories, government and institutional health care clinics, as well as other alternate care sites.

Henry Schein operates through a centralized and automated distribution network, with a selection of more than 120,000 branded products and Henry Schein private-brand products in stock, as well as more than 180,000 additional products available as special-order items.

A FORTUNE 500 Company and a member of the S&P 500® and the Nasdaq 100® indexes, Henry Schein is headquartered in Melville, N.Y., and has operations or affiliates in 32 countries. The Company's sales from continuing operations reached $9.4 billion in 2018, and have grown at a compound annual rate of approximately 13 percent since Henry Schein became a public company in 1995.
For more information, visit Henry Schein at,, and @HenrySchein on Twitter.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Hundreds of Dental Offices "Dead in the Water" Due to Ransomware Attack


Don’t say I didn’t warn you… in fact I’ve been warning you for years that something like this was going to happen.  Now over 400 dental practices are paying the price.  

Before we go any further with this post I’d like to ask you stop and think to  yourself how long your business would survive if tomorrow all of your data simply disappeared.  Think about that for a moment.  Not only would you lose your clinical data, you’d lose your accounting data as well.  With no way to do billing and no way to generate any new revenue, it wouldn’t be very long before your business would be OUT of business.  In today’s digital environment your data IS your practice.

Now don’t get me wrong, in this case the offices did everything they could.  They hired well known practice management companies (this affected 2 separate software providers).  Unfortunately the 2 companies PerCSoft and Digital Dental Record both used a third company called DDS Safe to provide a cloud backup solution. Ironically, The Digital Dental Record advertises DDS Safe on its website as a way to safeguard files from ransomware attacks.

Evidently the hackers somehow accessed the DDS Safe system and used it to deploy the REvil (Sodinokibi) ransomware on computers at hundreds of dentist offices across the US.  When the dental offices opened on Monday morning, they found all of their computers locked down by Ransomware.

In today’s digital environment of practice, failure to have access to digital tools and digital records severely limits what procedures an office can perform.  Scheduling, radiographs, diagnostic codes, chart notes, all become inaccessible.  Unless a patient knows absolutely what treatment they are there to receive, there is no way to determine that.

I’ve been preaching for years now the importance of having a redundant backup system that I refer to as the “Backup Chain” which contains as many links (nodes) as possible.  You simply cannot rely on one single source of backup to support your practice or any business.  One of the best links in the chain is provided by DDS Rescue which is a hardware “box” that backs up locally as well as to the cloud.  The “box” runs the Linux operating system and is invisible on the network.  Ransomware cannot find it because to them, it doesn’t exist.  The box images my system every hour so if something bad happens, we can simply go back in time to a point before problem occurred.  Simple!

I happen to know of an office that has been hit by Ransomware… TWICE!  Both times DDS Rescue was there and fixed the problem like it never even happened.  This company is a huge part of my digital backup strategy and has been for the last 8 years or so.  They are highly recommended!

There are starting to be quite a few good articles on this whole debacle.  Two of the best I’ve read are from ZD Net and this story even made it to CNN.  If you want to read an in-depth idea of the entire process, make sure to read the article on ZD Net.  The article on CNN is fairly short and provides more of an overview to the situation.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Composi-Tight® 3D Fusion™ Firm matrix bands launched by Garrison Dental Solutions


Garrison Dental Solutions, the premier manufacturer of sectional matrix systems since 1997, is pleased to announce the newest addition to the much-loved Composi-Tight® 3D Fusion™ Sectional Matrix System, Fusion Firm matrix bands with eZ-Place™ technology.

“Typical dead-soft sectional matrix bands are very easy to deform during placement on posterior Class II composite restorations. The eZ-Place™ technology used for Fusion Firm bands incorporates specially processed stainless steel and a proprietary matrix forming process to produce sectional matrix bands that resist deformation nearly 70% better than typical bands.” according to Garrison’s Director of Marketing, Jason Phillips.

eZ-Place™ allows Fusion firm bands to maintain a super-thin 0.0015” thinness and a pre-contoured shape to ensure the excellent tight interproximal contacts and ideal anatomy the Composi-Tight® 3D Fusion™ system is famous for. Fusion Firm bands can be placed in situations that are not possible with other bands. Conservative preps with remaining contact, snags on preparation margins and other challenges will not distort them. They are an excellent choice for first time sectional matrix system users and veterans alike.

Composi-Tight® 3D Fusion™ Firm matrix bands are available in assorted kits, individual refill packs and selected sectional matrix system kits direct from Garrison Dental Solutions. Call 888-437-0032 or visit for more information.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

BlueLight Analytics is Coming... and you DO NOT Want to Miss It!


Do you want to have the most predictable and long lasting restorations?  Of course you do.  You *expect* that out of yourself and your patients do as well.  It’s the reason we all get up in the morning and do what we do.  Doing your absolute best is what we do.  It’s the mantra the dentistry lives by.  Because of that basic tenet, knowledge of your procedures is power… but how about knowledge about your power  making you even more powerful?

Learn the science and power behind your curing light with CheckUp from BlueLight Analytics.  This amazing device will tell you the exact digital output of your curing light as well as the recommendations of curing times for the composites that you are using.  It’s an amazing device that truly has to be seen to get the full effect of how much it can do for your practice and your restorative procedures.  When we saw CheckUp in Chicago this year, the other Cellerant Best of Class Panel and I were blown away with the company, their device, and their mission.  That’s why we voted CheckUp as a Best of Class winner.

In case you haven’t received the emails they’ve been sending out, BlueLight Analytics will be in San Francisco where you will have a chance to get hands-on demos of CheckUp.  I’ve been using CheckUp in my practice since March and it is not something I want to be without.  This device is highly recommended.

Here’s a little bit from the company about the device and why you need to make sure you come by and see it...

We’re only a few days away until ADA/FDI World Dental Congress 2019 kicks off and we are getting so excited to talk about all things curing lights and materials—and of course, meet you!
We will be introducing our Cellerant Best of Class awarding-winning technology, checkUP, and we want you to be there. checkUP is the world’s first smart light measurement and materials management device that lets you accurately monitor the output of your curing lights, track your list of materials, and generate precise curing times based on each light reading. Visit our booth to learn more about checkUP and how it can help you increase restoration success!
Why visit our booth?
A chance to win $500 by taking a swing at “The Optimal Cure” game
Learn more about checkUP, and how it can save you time and money by increasing restoration success!

And much more!
Where: ADA/FDI Exhibit Hall, Booth #2133
When: All conference long—September 5th-7th