Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Generate a Better List for your Unscheduled Hygiene

I love it when I am working with a team one-on-one on optimizing their Dentrix software and implementing new systems and one of the team members shouts out, “OMG! That is the coolest thing ever. You just made my day.”

This happened recently while we were learning the four reports for keeping your schedule full. One of the four reports I talk about is the Continuing Care list and using it to follow up with patients who are overdue for their hygiene visit. Since nearly half our nation has periodontal disease*, it is extremely important to follow up with both classifications of patients: Perio and Prophy.

With the traditional Continuing Care list, you can only generate a list of <ALL> continuing care types or a list of one at a time. Even though this is a great report for tracking unscheduled patients, it limits what you can view on your report. My goal when I am working with an office is to always look for the most efficient and productive way to perform the tasks we do every day in the dental practice. The Dentrix developers probably never realized that, when they updated the Letters and Custom Lists feature, they had also improved the way we generate a list of unscheduled recare patients.

When you use the Letters and Custom Lists as a report generator, you can get much more specific on your parameters. It is also a much more interactive report. When the report is more interactive, you do not have to print it because all the tools you need are available right on the report. Let me show you what I mean.

Go to the Office Manager > Letters and Custom Lists > Continuing Care > select a letter option in the list you are not using and click Edit. Then let’s turn it into a report instead of a letter. Here are my recommendations . . .
  • Rename it to “Continuing Care overdue patients” (upper left corner)
  • Make sure only “Patients” is selected and under the Privacy select “Does not apply to this letter”
  • Select the due date range and the continuing care types you want to search for in the Continuing Care >> button. You will need to select your due dates each time you generate this list.
  • Then, in the Data Fields, select what information you want to see in your list. The report will look somewhat like a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet with columns of data and the Data Fields are the columns you are choosing to see.
  • When you are finished, click on OK.
  • Click on Open in List Manager.

Now you have a Continuing Care list that shows you all your Prophy and Perio patients on one list and you have all the icons at the top of the report to make notes, look at the ledger, see other family members, etc. This report will save you time and give you more information than the traditional Continuing Care report did. Also, you save more trees because you never have to print this report.
If you want my tip sheet on using this report, CLICK HERE and request it.

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