For Larger Practices

Multiple Locations: Introduction to the Clinics Feature

If you are a multi-location practice and want to manage the organization as a whole, while operating each location as an individual entity, this post is for you. We’ll explain the Clinics feature in Open Dental, and how to know if it’s a fit for your organization.

What is the clinics Feature?

The Clinics feature is used when there are multiple office locations that share a single database, and want to keep information separated by physical location. See Clinics in our online manual for more.

Is the clinics feature is right for me?

If any of these apply, you may want to consider clinics.

  • You have more than one location.
  • You have patients that move between locations.
  • You have providers that move between locations.
  • You want to access all patient data from any location.
  • You want to keep financial information (reports) separate by each location.

Using clinics allows you to keep all of your data in one place. It makes it easy for patients and providers to move freely between locations and makes scheduling and patient management a breeze. Reports can be run for all, one, or multiple clinics, keeping your financial data organized to measure success at the clinic level, and for the organization as a whole.

I have a different database for each location, can I move to clinics?

Yes! If you have multiple locations, our conversions team may be able to merge multiple Open Dental databases together into one database with Clinics turned on. There is a fee for each merge. If any of the locations’ databases are coming from another software, there will also be a separate data conversion fee for each database converted from another software.

How are clinics set up?

There are two parts to setting up clinics.

The first is your IT. Your IT Professional will need to set up your network in a way so all locations can access the same database. Typically this is done through a VPN, however, they may have other options better suited to your office.

The second is setting up clinics within Open Dental. This can be done on your own, or with the help of Open Dental Support.

Is clinics easy to use?

Yes! Once you have set up clinic information in your system, Open Dental follows patient flow, so you don’t have to worry about manually setting the clinic when scheduling appointments, charting procedures, sending claims, or even collecting payment. It’s all done for you!

For example:
You’ve created an appointment in Clinic A. The procedures associated to the appointment will then be assigned to Clinic A. When the procedures are attached to a claim, the claim will be sent under Clinic A. When you receive payment for those procedures, the payment will be associated to Clinic A. And so on, and so forth. Once you’ve set the clinic the first time, you don’t have to manually select it as you go.

Take a look at the next post in this series – Multiple Locations: Clinics Setup. We’ll go into more detail on how to set up various aspects of the program to help each location function the way it needs to while allowing you to manage all your locations seamlessly.


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