ICDE: Imparting specialist know-how around the world
Interview with Dr Robert May, Director ICDE/Professional Services at Ivoclar Vivadent AG in Schaan/Liechtenstein
Dr May, can you tell us what the abbreviation ICDE stands for?
Dr Robert May: ICDE stands for International Center for Dental Education. These centres are equipped with state-of-the-art training and continuing education facilities and are run by our company in a number of locations. They are targeted at dentists and dental technicians as well as practice teams. We are operating 29 centres of this kind all around the globe. The ICDE at our headquarters in Liechtenstein has an international remit. All the other ICDEs are run as regional training centres that offer insights into the local market conditions.
Can you describe to us what these ICDEs generally look like? What can visitors expect from them?
Dr Robert May: Our ICDEs normally comprise course rooms, labs, practice rooms and lecture halls. In Liechtenstein, for instance, the facilities include a phantom practice and four dental labs where course participants can undertake practical work.
All our ICDEs offer continuing education and training courses on the use of our products throughout the entire year. In addition, the program includes courses that are related to our products, such as workshops in digital photography. In a nutshell: We offer a broad array of high-value seminars, courses and workshops.
What has been the response?
Dr Robert May: To date, over 15,000 dentists, dental technicians, opinion leaders, dealers, dental nurses and assistants as well as employees have visited informational courses and training events at our ICDEs. This means that Ivoclar Vivadent has established one of the largest networks for dental education.
What happens in those countries where there is no ICDE?
Dr Robert May: In addition to its own continuing education centres, Ivoclar Vivadent supports a worldwide network of local cooperation partners who are running their own course centres. These cooperation partners have agreed to meet the high standards and requirements of Ivoclar Vivadent and to conduct all product-specific courses according to the specifications of Ivoclar Vivadent. They are therefore allowed to use the title "Partner of ICDE" and display a dedicated logo.
Why do you place so much importance on the further education of customers?
Dr Robert May: There is a clear reason why Ivoclar Vivadent places such a high standard on practice-related training and education: We want to ensure that dental professionals use our products to their very best advantage. This is a win-win for everybody - manufacturer, users and the patients who will be delighted with the high esthetic appearance and quality of their dental restorations.
Dr May, thank you for this interview.