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Having 130 years of experience in the dental industry, Dentsply Sirona combines expertise in dentistry and digital to bring the latest technological advancements to dental professionals. Dental Tribune International spoke with Erania Brackett, senior vice president, chief marketing officer and head of sustainability at Dentsply Sirona, about how the leader in digital dentistry is helping to support dentists. According to Brackett, the company’s focus rests on securing patient satisfaction and predictable outcomes and helping dentists to increase practice efficiency and growth.
Ms Brackett, with more than 20 years of experience leading global operations and marketing in the healthcare and consumer products industries, what is the most exciting aspect of working at Dentsply Sirona and building a comprehensive global brand in dentistry in particular?
I was drawn to Dentsply Sirona because I strongly believe in its mission: empowering millions of dental professionals every day by proudly creating innovative solutions for healthy smiles. It is inspiring to see the transformational impact that digitisation is having on the dental industry, as well as what can be achieved through industry collaboration and partnership.
This spirit of collaboration underpins our new brand theme, “United for better dentistry”, which was also our theme at IDS 2023. The theme is the condensed expression of everything that we try to achieve at Dentsply Sirona. We are united in this common goal, but we are also united with our customers and partners to shape the future of dentistry together. It will be an exciting year ahead as we bring “United for better dentistry” to life.
You have been Dentsply Sirona’s chief marketing officer since August 2021, a time when even the giants of dentistry were still struggling with COVID-19 pandemic-related challenges. How has the Dentsply Sirona brand developed over the past few years?
At the height of the pandemic, our company played an active role in developing the safety protocols that enabled dental practices to reopen. We were also quick to pivot and assess how we would continue to provide training and education to dental professionals safely during this time. In 2020, we saw an increase in demand for online courses. That year alone, almost 7,300 courses were presented—mainly online—to more than a million participants in 80 countries. In 2021, we launched a new series of DS Academy on-demand curricula. To this day, it continues to be a popular learning format. There is a wide range of courses, covering implantology and endodontic workflows, among other topics, and we continue to expand the offering. We even have a course on sustainability in dentistry. This fuels our mission to help dentists to succeed in the necessary foundational areas, improving their patient experience, encouraging practice growth and, ultimately, making impactful progress in the world.
“To this day, [DS Academy] continues to be a popular learning format.”
What were some of the product and operational highlights from this period?
In 2022, we had three key launches that took digital dentistry to new heights. These were DS Core, Primeprint Solution and Primescan Connect. These innovations were all designed to improve practice efficiency and deliver fantastic results to patients. Let me highlight, for example, how digitisation has evolved our DS Signature implant workflows. Now, with our digital solutions, dentists can seamlessly integrate and fully leverage the power of digital from data capture, planning and guided surgery to the final restorative solution. This enables our customers to handle more implant cases in less time, to grow their businesses and to deliver the best possible care to their patients.
Another highlight was in the area of sustainability—something that is a top priority for us. In 2021, we launched our sustainability strategy, “BEYOND: Taking action for a brighter world”. This is coming to life in a range of ways. We are a founding partner of FDI World Dental Federation’s Sustainability in Dentistry initiative, which provides guidelines and objectives for achieving a sustainable procurement and supply chain process throughout the dental industry.
Our collaboration with Smile Train is another highlight, providing life-changing cleft care to children around the world. I am personally very proud of the work we are doing in this area, and we plan to increase our efforts even more in the long term.
“Leadership in digital dentistry is a key pillar of our business strategy.”
Digitisation has played an important role in helping oral care professionals to overcome the effects of the pandemic. How is this reflected in your company?
Digitisation in the dental industry is not a new concept—we have had CAD/CAM technologies for decades now. I think what the COVID-19 crisis showed us is that digital solutions are not just fun new toys or nice to have; they are absolute necessities in driving the industry forward and protecting the health of patients.
Leadership in digital dentistry is a key pillar of our business strategy. We have leveraged our 130 years of dental industry expertise and product and technological advancements to build our DS Signature Workflows, which are powered by DS Core. DS Signature Workflows allow the dentist and his or her specialist to integrate procedures and equipment with our end-to-end portfolio, to simplify, reduce risk and seamlessly synchronise with their teams and labs to provide exceptional patient care.
We want to ensure that our digital universe and connected solutions help to shape the future of dental practices with ease so that our customers can focus on what matters the most, which is caring for their patients. New challenges are emerging every day, but we are excited to be the driving force behind innovations that help dentists to grow with confidence and rise to the challenges that they face.
What does the future hold for Dentsply Sirona?
We will continue to focus our efforts on developing solutions and offering support that meet customer needs. We work closely with our customers—it is important to me to take time regularly to visit some local clinics—and they openly tell us what their most critical needs are: patient satisfaction, predictable outcomes, practice efficiency and business growth. Dentsply Sirona is in the position to deliver innovative solutions with customers in mind and provide them with quality support at every step of their clinical and practice journeys. Everything from our product launches to our branding will reflect that.