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Streaming live and on-demand: DS World 2020 offered attendees 70 continuing education opportunities and lectures, and six live surgeries. (Image: Dentsply Sirona)

Dentsply Sirona sets new standards in digital dental events

By Jeremy Booth, Dental Tribune International
November 26, 2020

CHARLOTTE, N.C., U.S.: DS World typically takes place in Las Vegas, but was held virtually this year owing to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. More than 4,500 dental professionals from over 25 countries attended the event, and the company said that its success showed that the dental business and continuing dental education are thriving even amid the greatest health crisis of the modern era.

DS World 2020 was streamed live from Nov. 13 to 20 and attendees were able to view the sessions either live or on demand. This meant that dental professionals from around the world effectively were able to be in two or more places at once—a clear advantage that enabled them to make the most of an ambitious program that included more than more than 70 courses, continuing education (CE) opportunities, lectures from leading key opinion leaders and six live surgeries.

CEO Donald M. Casey welcomed participants to the event by thanking dental teams for the commitment that they had made to their patients and dental practices during the pandemic. He said that dentistry has, in his mind, always been absolutely essential, and that this fact was made clear when elective dental treatment was suspended during the first wave of the pandemic: “How can anyone not realize the importance and—more importantly—the expertise that you bring in order to treat your patients safely.” Casey asked: “What is more important than oral health? Because we all know that oral health is the gateway to total health.”

In conversation about leadership: Dr. Sameer Puri, vice president for clinical education at CDOCS at Dentsply Sirona (left), and world-renowned speaker and author Simon Sinek. (Image: Dentsply Sirona)

A leading role in dentistry

The opening session of DS World 2020 drew inspiration from outside of the dental industry through a conversation between the host, Dr. Sameer Puri, vice president for clinical education at CDOCS at Dentsply Sirona, and world-renowned speaker and author on the topic of leadership Simon Sinek. “Leadership is not about being in charge; it’s about taking care of people in your charge,” Sinek said. He pointed out that most dental professionals are leaders in their discipline, but often do not receive training in what leadership requires in the dental practice. “Leadership is a skill,” he said. “We have to study it, learn it, and practice it like any other skill.”

Sinek’s advice to dental professionals who are running a small business and trying to survive the tough pandemic business environment was to do all that they can to continue learning about leadership. “Study it, read an article, watch a TED Talk,” he said, adding that the best leaders have one thing in common: they get together and they talk about it.

During the opening session, Puri and Casey also encouraged attendees to take full advantage of the CE opportunities that were on offer in close to all dental disciplines at DS World 2020. They pointed out that a virtual format did not mean reduced personal contact and networking opportunities. Casey urged attendees to interact with key opinion leaders and other attendees during breakout sessions and panel events. The live surgeries focused on topics such as the digital workflow for implant therapy in the esthetic zone, and whereas the surgical procedures were available on demand, participants were invited to take part in synchronous post-procedure discussions.

New products for a new era in dental care

Let’s deliver on innovation,” Casey told the dental press in an online briefing, remarking that it was through innovation that the company planned to change the global face of dentistry and dental education.

Dentsply Siron’s new Schick AE oral sensor. (Image: Dentsply Sirona)

The Axeos 3D/2D imaging system has the largest field of view among Dentsply Sirona’s extraoral radiography units. (Image: Dentsply Sirona)

Attendees had the chance to learn about the Primescan digital imaging system and SureSmile clear aligners during online lectures, and breakout sessions presented the opportunity for attendees to experience advancements in procedural workflow and digital dentistry, such as the new Axeos 3D/2D imaging system and the Schick AE oral sensor. Dentsply Sirona says that Axeos—which won the Red Dot Award for product design this year—is its extraoral radiography unit with the largest field of view and delivers optimal image quality at low-dose optimized exposure. “Axeos has exactly the right balance between excellence, speed and precision,” Dr. Chung How Kau, chairman and professor of orthodontics at the Department of Orthodontics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, was quoted in press material as saying.

The Schick AE sensor is a reliable diagnostics tool owing to its low dose exposure, optimized resolution and improved display of the anatomical structures, company information states. The sensor combines a theoretical resolution of 33 lp/mm with newly optimized data readout and filtering functions in order to enhance diagnostic capabilities. Before the event, Dr. Leonard Patella, who specializes in implant and cosmetic dentistry in Garden City, New York, told Dentsply Sirona: “I get a solid basis for a safe and accurate diagnosis of my patients, even in lower X-ray dose ranges.”

The virtual format of this year’s DS World was necessary due to health and travel restrictions, but the success of the event lends support to the idea of the strength of online clinical education. Dr. Michael Watson, who practices dentistry in Wake Forest, North Carolina, said that the virtual format of DW World 2020 had proved useful to many dentists. He stated in press material that “this format of clinical education will continue to be a great option for dental professionals, especially those who want to experience this level of presentation without having to travel or close their offices.”

This is one of the great things that we have learned in 2020: how you can do virtual events and really interact with people,” Casey said.

Dentsply Sirona has announced that next year’s DS World will return to the desert metropolis of Las Vegas—where it has been held previously—as an in-person event. Casey told attendees that the event will be held at Caesars Forum in Las Vegas from Sept. 23–25, 2021.

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