Monday, April 25, 2016

Obtaining a patient signature on the Treatment Plan Estimate . . . helping you create a more efficient workflow

I moderated my first online Dentrix user meeting last Friday and it was AWESOME! It’s called Freestyle Friday and it is open Q&A, which means YOU get to ask the questions during the live event and I get to help you solve it.

One of the most popular questions was about signing treatment plan estimates when you are paperless. This office was printing the estimate, having the patient sign it and then scanning it into the Document Center. I asked the participant why the office didn’t like this option and the answer was, “It is just so time-consuming.” Let’s look at some alternatives to being more efficient.

I gave this office two options to try and they can go back to their office and see which way works best for them. My preferred way is always not the best way for the office … which is why I love Dentrix so much as it gives a few different alternatives so you can choose.

Here are your options for obtaining an electronic signature on your treatment plan estimates. Take note that even if you are not paperless, you might find this workflow extremely helpful.

  • The first option is to do a “virtual print” to the Dentrix Document Center and then have the patient sign inside of the Document Center. You can find step-by-step instructions on how to do this by reading my blog titled, “A Little Known Secret”. After you have pulled the treatment plan into the Document Center, you can make notes about the agreement and then have the patient sign electronically. If you click on Edit > Sign Document or click on the icon for Sign Document, then you can have the patient sign the document in the Document Center. This will lock up the document to prevent any editing or accidental deleting.
  • The next option is to attach an electronic signature directly to the Treatment
    Plan case. Highlight a treatment case in the Treatment Plan module or Treatment Plan panel in the patient chart, then click on the Settings tab at the bottom of the panel. When you scroll all the way down, you can create or edit the consent forms you would like to use in your office. If you click on the Supporting Information tab just above that, you can attach a selected consent form to your case. When you do this, it will open a new window to prompt you to have the patient sign. After you have the patient sign using an electronic signature device, click on Save and Close. It will automatically save a copy of the consent form along with the signatures in the Document Center.

The main difference between these two options is that the first option will save an exact copy of the Treatment Plan estimate with which the patient leaves. The benefit of this is that you can re-print it for the patient later or review it over the phone and you have the exact copy he or she does. The second option does not save a visual picture of the treatment plan estimate, only the consent form and signatures. You choose what is best for your practice.

For more information on electronic signatures, CLICK HERE.

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 and contact Dayna at


  1. It would be great if this could be done from an iPad so the patient could see what they were signing.

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    2. I agree, however in the 15 years I was working in a practice and using electronic signature pads I have never had a patient question it. It's all about the language skills you use. If you want you could use a PC Tablet with Dentrix installed and they could sign with their finger.
      Hope this helps,

    3. You can use an iPad by using splashtop to wirelessly connect to a desktop in your office. It mirrors the screen, and a patient can sign with their finger.

    4. I have been introducing MS Surface Pro tablets into the practice for electronic forms and signatures. The wireless environment is slower than a wired workstation so you have to be a little patient.