Renate Cusumano, of Bow Lane Dental Group, talks about winning Best Orthodontic Therapist at the Oral Health Awards.
How does it feel to have won an award?
It feels amazing! I’ve been a finalist a few times for different awards but never actually won.
So I felt really happy to finally win, especially in a year where we didn’t have much to look forward to.
Did you enjoy the awards evening?
It was… different!
Unfortunately we couldn’t have the usual awards ceremony so it was done virtually. My husband and I still had a great time celebrating in the living room, and it was lovely to see the hosts still make the effort to get dressed up.
I’m actually quite shy so I’m secretly happy I didn’t have to walk up on stage in front of everyone.
Why did you choose to enter the awards?
Although the role of an orthodontic therapist has been around for a long time I feel that it’s recently becoming more recognised and utilised.
I usually only enter for the hygienist award but was delighted to see a new orthodontic therapy category for the first time. So I thought why not, let’s give it a go!
What do you think the awards are doing to the standards within the profession?
I think that having awards definitely makes a lot of dental clinicians want to up their standards.
It’s inspiring to see some of the amazing things people do for others, their community and the life-changing dental transformations. It makes you want to do better and forces you to look back and critically appraise your own past and potential future.
Why do you think you won?
I think I won because of the wide range of things I can offer to my patients.
People were hesitant to attend the dentist in 2020, and as I’m also a hygiene therapist I was able to combine their appointments and reduce their visits. I use innovative techniques and the latest technologies to be able to create a smoother journey for my patients.
I really went out of my way to stay connected with my orthodontic patients during the first lockdown and I think that was really appreciated.
Have you noticed a difference in patient numbers/in the practice since winning the award?
To be honest, no. But I believe the reason for this is because we’re in the middle of a global pandemic so a lot of potential new patients are unable to visit the practice.
I have, however, had a lot more enquiries on Instagram, so hopefully I’ll get to meet and treat all of those people when this is all over.
Will you enter the awards again this year?
I hadn’t thought about it, but I think I probably will. There’s always room for growth and improvement.
Anything else you’d like to add?
I’m very lucky to be able to work with and be surrounded by some of the most amazing people who are really supportive and are always inspiring me to do better.
So I want to say thank you to them and also to my lovely patients who keep me on my toes and make my job so enjoyable.
Hear from Oral Health Awards winners
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