Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Treatment Plan Estimates . . . personal and efficient

When I am working with an office, I love to customize things in Dentrix to make it personal for the office and the patient experience, but I am also a stickler for efficiency. If you have read any of my blogs about using templates, you know what I am talking about. Well, the same goes for when we are printing a patient’s treatment plan estimate. I want it to be customized, but efficient for the front desk. You can create customized print options and save these options when you are generating a patient treatment plan estimate. Below is a screen shot of the print page and a description of all the options from which you have to choose.

  1. Treatment Plan Total - This will total up all procedure fees and give the patient a grand total at the end of the treatment plan estimate.
  2. Finance Status – In the supporting information tab of the treatment plan panel, you can select a status for this patient. This financial status can be customized if you click into the Settings tab in the Treatment Plan panel.
  3. Patient Balance – This will pull the patient balance from the ledger.
  4. Family Balance – This will pull from the account balance on the ledger.
  5. Fee Expiration Date – This can be customized per patient or you can set up a default date range (like 3 months, for example). To customize the default, click on the Settings Tab on the Treatment Plan panel.
  6. Treatment Case Note – Think of this as a disclosure statement. For example, insurance estimate is not a guarantee of payment, patient portion is due at the time of service, etc. You can customize this case note by clicking on the Settings tab in the Treatment Plan panel. You can create several case notes and then manually attach them to each case, but this does require more work.
  7. Graphic Chart – This will print a picture of the patient’s tooth chart. It is best if you print it in color, but black and white will also work. The point here is that patients are very visual and they don’t know tooth numbers so giving them a picture to follow really helps them understand where it is in their mouth.
  8. Patient Education – This will pull graphics and content from GURU. Even if you only have the free version of GURU, it will print educational topics based on the procedure codes listed in the treatment plan.
  9. Signed Consent Forms - The Treatment Plan does have a feature to attach a consent form to the case. The patient can sign with an electronic signature and it will put a copy into the Document Center. These consent forms can be created, edited, and deleted by clicking on the Settings tab on the Treatment Plan panel. One thing to remember when using the consent forms in this area is that it is linked to the entire case and not a specific procedure.
  10. Insurance – If the treatment plan is being printed for an insurance patient, make sure you put a check mark in ‘Use Dental Plan Maximums and Deductibles’ so it will pull information from the insurance information in the Family File. If you are printing this for a cash patient, then you can check to hide all the insurance information.
  11. Patient Privacy – I would check all these boxes to protect the patient’s private information just in case they lose the printed estimate or drop it out in the parking lot on their way out.
  12. Print sub totals by visit – If you have organized the procedures inside the case by visit, then you can check here to have the printout subtotal each group of visits. This helps the patient budget for each appointment or know the price for each phase.
  13. Use Patient Friendly Descriptions - If you put a check here, the description will override the ADA description with a customized description. For more information on this topic, read my blog, “No speak English . . . no worries
  14. Include Procedure Notes – If you have read my other blog posts (CLICK HERE) about where to enter notes, you know that I use this note box for the diagnosis for the procedure code or the clinical narrative. With that being said, you have the opportunity to have that diagnosis print on the patient’s estimate so if he or she needs to review it with a spouse or parent, he or she has all of the information needed.
  15. Exclude Completed Procedures – If you are reprinting an existing case, you may want to exclude any procedures that have already been completed.
  16. Compare to Fee Schedule – If you are using the Fee Schedule Method, then you can check here to add a column to the treatment plan estimate that would show the patient the full fee for each procedure. For more information about using Fee Schedules, read my two blogs, “Fee Schedules or Write Off’s that is the question,” and “Fee Schedules . . .the method of choice for PPO plans.
You can then click onto the Columns button and check mark which columns of information you want on the patient’s estimate. Once you have selected all your choices, you can save it and give it a name so you don’t have to remember each time which check boxes to select. I will usually create a saved option for insurance patients and a saved option for cash patients. I hope this custom yet efficient tool helps you and your team.

Dayna Johnson, Certified Dentrix Trainer
Dayna loves her work. She has over 25 years of experience in the dental industry, and she’s passionate about building efficient, consistent, and secure practice management systems. Dayna knows that your entire day revolves around your practice management software—the better you learn to use it, the more productive and stress-free your office will be. In 2016, Dayna founded Novonee ™, The Premier Dentrix Community, to help cultivate Dentrix super-users all over the country. Learn more from Dayna at www.novonee.com and contact Dayna at dayna@novonee.com.


  1. Your blog is super helpful, but I can't find any help for this. In adjustments, Courtesy spelled wrong! TWICE! It's been years, but our dentist has finally sat down and is learning how to use the computers. We've been able to ignore it, but she can't. These misspellings eat at her soul. How can I go into my adjustments and just edit them? I've tried through practice manager, and I've googled. Nothing. You're my last hope! Thank you!

    1. You can edit the spelling by going to the Office Manager > Maintenance > Practice Setup > Definitions, then click on the drop down menu and select Adjustment Types. Highlight the one that is misspelled, change the definition text and click change. It will give you a warning message but as long as you are just fixing the spelling and not changing it to a new definition you are fine.
      Hope this helps,

  2. is there a way to adjust the patient portion on the treatment plan without change the initial fee? im trying to write a treatment and show the normal office fee then the discounted fee. patient has no insurance

    1. There is not a way to show a discount on a treatment plan unless you are using fee schedules. When using fee schedules you can show the column of your full fee so the patient can see the difference, however you cannot show an adjustment.