Tips & Tricks #41

Time for your tip fix – and nearly all of them are insurance-related this time around! We’ll discuss how to view/print a list of patients on a particular insurance plan, how to clean up (duplicate) insurance plans, clear up the HIPAA-compliance question on bulk check EOBs, and the best way to provide a patient’s records when they request them.

How can I print a list of subscribers (or patients) on a particular insurance plan?

If you need a list of subscribers for an insurance plan for one reason or another (e.g., you’ve gone out of network), run the Insurance Plans report. The report lets you filter by carrier, making it easy to get a list of all subscribers for a specific carrier and the results display Group Name, so you can pick out certain plans as needed. Once you’ve run the report, you can easily print it or export it to a spreadsheet as needed.

If the Standard Report doesn’t quite meet your needs, you can always look to our Query Examples:

  • Query #241: Patients with a specified insurance carrier who had a procedure completed in a date range
  • Query # 1186: Mailing list of patients with a particular insurance carrier and Group Num
  • Query #1507: Active Patients with their last completed procedure in a date range with the specified carrier as their insurance

For more details on using User Queries, see our QuickTip video:

I want to clean up my insurance plans (I have duplicates). How can I do this?

When you’re adding insurance to a patient it’s always best practice to use the Pick From List button to prevent duplicate insurance plans from being created, but in case this happens, not to worry, it can be fixed by combining insurance plans. First, you may want to open two instances of Open Dental (this can be helpful in comparing insurance plans). There are a few things that may help indicate insurance plans are duplicates:

  • Same Carrier
  • Same Employer
  • Same Group Name/Group Number
  • Same Benefits

If any of these details are different, the plans may be similar, but not necessarily duplicates, so it’s best to err on the side of caution and not combine these plans as once plans have been combined this cannot be undone.

To compare insurance plans, go to Lists, Insurance Plans. Double-click an insurance plan to view details. Once you’re certain the plans are duplicates:

  1. Highlight all duplicate plans in the list (CTRL + click to select multiple)
  2. Click Combine (reminder: once plans have been combined, that cannot be undone)
  3. Highlight the insurance plan you would like to keep (all other insurance plans will be combined into this insurance plan, so make sure this plan has the details you’d like to keep)
  4. Follow the remaining prompts

Once the combine is complete, the selected plan will remain on the list and all other plans will no longer appear. All patients that were attached to the other plans are now attached to the plan that still remains.

Are there HIPAA-compliance concerns with scanning and attaching a bulk EOB when posting a bulk check?

There are no HIPAA-compliance concerns when attaching a bulk EOB to a bulk check because PHI is not being shared with any other patient, only with authorized users (practice staff). A HIPAA ‘violation’ is unauthorized access to PHI. Simply scanning and attaching a group EOB with multiple patients on it and attaching that to a patient’s claim is not a violation because patients do not have access to that information in Open Dental.

If and when a patient requests a copy of their records, EOBs are not part of that record, as patients receive copies of their own EOBs directly from the insurance Carrier. There is no requirement to provide patients access to Open Dental itself, only to their own patient record, and this can be provided in a few different ways – read on!

A patient is requesting a copy of their records. What’s the best way to provide this?

Give them access to their account in the Patient Portal. This is a free eService available to all practices on support. In the Summary tab, patients can view, download, or transmit EHR Continuity of Care Document ( CCD ) – this is their patient record.

From the Chart Module Menu, click CCD. This opens the Continuity of Care Document window. From there, you can view the CCD, print it, or export it to an XML and XSL file. You can also enter optional instructions for the Patient that will show on the CCD.

Have a quick question? Chat with us! Need us to remote connect, give us a call – we’re here to help!

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