What are my options for going paperless?

What are my options for going paperless?

This is a good question because going paperless means something different to everyone. To some it means having absolutely no paper present in the Practice while to others it means utilizing one component of a paperless Practice, such as digital charting.


The focus of this article is to explore actual methods and products that can assist you in becoming paperless in the various areas of your Practice. At each stage of a patient visit there are opportunities to be paperless. These are explored below.


1. Pre-appointment

Appointment reminders.

  • YAPI – Program for sending text, email, or snail mail reminders.
  • Demand Force – Subscription service for marketing campaigns, text & email reminders.
  • Tlink - Subscription service for text, email, voicemail (Housecalls) reminders.
  • Sesame – Subscription service for text, email, voicemail (Sesame Voice) reminders. Patient login for bill pay, appointment viewing.
  • Practice Management – Many Practice Management companies are now offering a component for appointment reminders. (Dentrix eCentral & Eaglesoft eReminders)

Health History.

  • Put patient forms on your website. Patients can print and fill them out ahead of time to bring to their appointment. Your staff scans the document.
  • Dentforms – Subscription service for full fledged online and in-Practice patient forms.
    • At home: Patients can fill out their health history online. The final step, signing the document, can be done quickly at your office using a signature pad or tablet device.
    • At the office: If a patient hasn’t filled out their health history online (not all of them will), they can fill it out and sign it on a laptop, computer, or tablet.
    • Forms are stored on your server
    • Customize your own forms
  • Practice Management – Many Practice Management companies are now offering a component for online patient forms. (Dentrix eCentral)


2. Patient Check In

Health History.

Insurance Card.

  • DocketPort 687. This little scanner will digitize both sides of an insurance card or drivers license in one quick scan. Less than 10 seconds per card.


3. Patient Treatment

Treatment Planning.

  • Using digital x-rays and clinical images, you can treatment plan with your patients on either a traditional computer or iPad/tablet device.

Digital X-ray/Imaging capture.

  • There are a numerous options including Dexis, Schick, Acclaim, Kodak.

Electronic Charting.

  • Just about every Practice Management System has an electronic charting module.

Paper charts and film x-rays from other offices.

  • Microtek ScanMaker i800 Plus (LED)Scans xrays as well as paper documents.
  • A nice digital camera (which you probably already have) and a lightbox. Keep the camera on a tripod facing the lightbox to quickly and easily snap photos of your xray films.

o   As an added bonus, use an Eye-Fi card so you never have to attach the camera to your computer. The Eye-Fi wirelessly sends images to your computer.


4. Patient Walkout

Walkout statement, billing receipts, clinical images.

  • Offer to email to patients.


It’s up to you to decide what area or areas of your practice could use a paperless makeover, and with the options above there is surely something to make it happen. Keep in mind your staff’s ability to take on new technology. Be prepared for a temporary learning curve and make sure your IT folks are on speed dial :)

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Comments on What are my options for going paperless?

John Moses said, on Wed, February 22, 2017

Good post, lots of things to consider when going paperless.  Another subscription service that sends appointment reminders, marketing campaigns and increases new patients is Rubix http://www.sendthereminder.com Rubix.  It is compatible out of the box with Eaglesoft, Open Dental and Dentrix.

Pedro Becker said, on Wed, March 02, 2016

If somebody is struggling with the patient management in dental practices?
Then I have something for you guys that will surely help you out to make your dentistry paperless. DDS dashboard, just an easy way to manage all your patient records on your iPad or iPhone.
On one side, where the dental practitioners can maintain their patient record and schedule via this app, the patient can also go for paperless registration  and scheduling.

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