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Staying Productive and Proactive When You’re Not Seeing Patients

We are living through unprecedented times. Like many offices across the nation, you may find yourself in a period where you are not seeing patients. Here are some ideas to stay productive and proactive so that when business picks up again, you’ll be poised and ready to jump back in with increased productivity and efficiency.

Perfect Your Forms

If you haven’t yet, take this time to go paperless! Turn all of your patient forms, consents, and medical histories, and turn them into Sheets in Open Dental.

Sheets can be used on a kiosk in the office, online for patient convenience (as WebForms), or using the new eClipboard eService and app. Once a patient completes a form, the information can be imported into their chart, streamlining data entry, and improving accuracy.

Design your own customized sheets – our Sheets Webinars can help.

Create Wiki Pages

Did you know you can put all of your processes, policies, and information in one spot for easy access by all members of the team?
The Open Dental Wiki allows you to create a page for each topic that is easily edited, searchable and keeps a history of edits.

Create Templates for Notes

If you find yourself typing the same notes over, and over, and over, consider creating templates to save you time.

Auto Notes allow you to create prompts to quickly complete a note. Use them in procedures, commlogs, and tasks.

Default Procedure Notes are default notes that are automatically added to a procedure when it is treatment planned or set complete.

Quick Paste Notes can be used all over the program and are a quick way to insert common phrases and notes. Each quick paste note can be assigned an abbreviation to quickly insert the full text.

Take a Closer Look at Claims

Now is a great time to be sure you’re getting the money you’ve already earned. Run the following reports to ensure all claims are created, sent, and paid.

Procedures Not Billed to Insurance Report. Use this to find procedures with a status of Unsent. Create and send claims straight from the report.

Claims Not Sent Report. Find claims that have been created, but not sent. Go into each patient to find the claim and send it off.

Outstanding Insurance Claims Report. Use this report to find claims that you have sent, but have not yet been received (i.e. you probably haven’t been paid!).


This is a challenging season as we navigate frequent and significant changes to our “normal.” Staying productive and proactive during this slow time will have your team poised and ready to take even better care of your patients when you return to normal operations.

We are here for you – if you need anything, please reach out in the way that’s most convenient for you!

UPDATE: Don’t miss our Part 2 Post for even more ideas to stay productive and proactive!

4 replies »

  1. Hi, thank you so much for presenting this blog here. However a little more explanation would have been better but still I loved your blog and appreciate your effort of advising some practical work that dentists can do now.

  2. The sheets team seems to be massively overwhelmed, based on my calls to support. As I only reached out to do this based on this blog post, I recommend updating it with realistic timelines.

    • Our intent with this post was to recommend practices watch our webinars to customize their own sheets. We’ve edited the wording a bit to clarify this, and our support team can help answer questions you might have as you customize your sheets. We appreciate your patience during this challenging time, and look forward to brighter times ahead!

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