10 Questions: Ron Saslow, President/CEO of Hu-Friedy

March 21, 2012

01 What are some of the Hu-Friedy highlights from 2010?

01 What are some of the Hu-Friedy highlights from 2010?

One highlight that stands out is the launch of SWERV3™, our new magnetostrictive scaler, which joins our line of ultrasonic scaling product offerings, including the Symmetry IQ® (piezoelectric device) as well as our full range of inserts and tips.   

02 What have you learned regarding optimal clinical effectiveness over the years?

We have learned a lot in more than 102 years of supporting dental professionals, but two fundamental principles come to mind. The first being periodontal disease may pose a significant risk to overall health, and the second is the clinician’s need to use a variety of technologies, instruments and techniques for the best outcomes. We believe the standard of care for periodontal debridement is a combination of hand and ultrasonic scaling products to ensure the best clinical results.   

03 In developing both piezo and magneto ultrasonic products, what customer input was important to Hu-Friedy?  

Customers repeatedly told us about the need for options and choice in regard to technology and overall instrumentation. As it relates to ultrasonic scaling, our customers wanted an option to choose either piezoelectric or magnetostrictive technology. So we responded with products in both technologies, which is aligned with our core belief that customers should decide what works for them.

04 How does a comfortable ultrasonic insert impact the overall practice?

If an ultrasonic scaler is not comfortable, it will not get used and if it does not get used it will be impossible for the practice to see ROI. Having an ergonomic ultrasonic scaler is essential. Both Symmetry IQ and SWERV3, for example, have lightweight, well-balanced hand pieces and electronics that reduce noise. This provides for a quieter, more comfortable patient and clinician experience.

05 Any updates on tips and inserts?  

There are many choices in tips and inserts, all of which are designed to perform a specific function. In general, the trends are pointing toward inserts and tips that are thinner, more resilient and that can be used effectively for all types of deposit removal.

06 In terms of magneto versus piezo, what drives a technology purchase?

This often depends on the clinician’s preference, which usually develops in the educational setting. For an ultrasonic device, the first consideration is how the unit will be used, and who will be using it. Every practice has specific needs and features they are looking for, but in general ergonomics, a full range of power and touchpad controls influence the purchase decision. The array of tip designs play a big role as well, as does the unit’s ability to function effectively for every patient, every day.

07 With the increasing popularity of ultrasonic scaling, how does infection control factor into the experience?

Through our success in cassettes, cleaning and care solutions and sterilization products, infection control and instrument management is a key focus. When developing the design and function of our Symmetry IQ and SWERV3 products, we focused on ease of maintenance and overall safety. Both the Symmetry IQ and SWERV3  feature smooth surfaces that are easy to wipe down, and both have autoclavable detachable parts.

08 What does the term “quality” mean to Hu-Friedy?

It is the foundation of our company. We have always seen ourselves as an extension of the practitioner’s hands, which is a responsibility we take very seriously. And while product quality is job No. 1, we instill that same spirit of quality in other areas of our business including providing unrivalled customer care, value-added community-building initiatives and CE. 

09  What’s next for Hu-Friedy?

2011 is going to be an exciting year for several of our product families, including innovations coming from our Orthodontics, Surgical and IMS (Infection Management Solutions) lines, in addition to the Perio and Ultrasonic Scaling lines.

10. Does Hu-Friedy have any special plans for the Greater New York conference this month?

We are looking forward to GNY and offering attendees a different experience and aricher learning environment. I can’t say much more than that, but we encourage everyone to visit our booth #1403 to see what the buzz is all about.