The Patient Clone tool creates a "clone" patient whose data can be synched with an original patient record. This is useful for tracking production and income for different types of providers that treat the same patient. For example, if you are a dental office with an orthodontist, use clones to track dentist work versus orthodontist work.
To use, Patient Clone must be enabled in Show Features. You will need to restart Open Dental for the change to take effect.
How it works:
- Create the clone in the Family module.
- The original patient is typically listed in mixed case (e.g. Smith, John). The clone is listed in all capital letters (e.g. SMITH, JOHN).
- The original and clone are linked by first name, last name, birthdate, and patient number. Changing the clone's name or birth date will break the link.
- Specific demographic information and insurance plans are synched from original to clone patient. Insurance coverage amounts are not synched. See Synch Original Patient and Clone below. Synching always goes from the original to the clone patient, never from clone to original patient.
- The original and clone can have separate clinics and primary providers for insurance claim billing and treating dentists.
- When bridging to imaging to other software, Open Dental always sends the original patient so duplicates are not created.
- Sheets are viewable in both the original and clone account.
- Swap original patient and clone or break clone relationships on the Edit Patient Information Window - Other Tab.
Create a Clone
To create a clone, the original patient must have a last name and a valid birth date entered on the Edit Patient Information window. First and last name is not allowed to be in all capital letters.
- Select the Patient, then open the Family module.
- Click Synch Clone in the toolbar. A confirmation message will show.
- Click Yes to create the clone. A confirmation message will indicate the clone's patient number and full name in ALL CAPS.
- Click OK. The clone will list in the Family Members grid in all capital letters.
Synch Original Patient and Clone
Once a patient clone exists, demographic and insurance plan information can be synched from the original patient to the clone.
- Select the original patient.
- Click Synch Clone. A confirmation message will show.
- Click OK to close the message.
The following demographic information is synched (Edit Patient Information window):
- Preferred Name
- Middle Initial
- Guarantor (moved to same family)
- Responsible Party
- Super Family
- Patient Status
- Address, Address 2, City, State, Zip, County
- Address Note
- Home Phone, Wireless, Work Phone
- Text Message OK
- Billing Type
- Fee Schedule
- Credit Type
- Medicaid ID
The Medical Urgent Note on from the Medical area is also synched.
Insurance: Insurance plan information is synched, but insurance coverage amounts (amounts used and benefits available) are not. Thus insurance estimates may be inaccurate. If you want both original and clone to reflect updated amounts, whenever an amount changes for one, add an Adjustment to Insurance Benefit for the other on the Edit Insurance Plan window. This may not be an issue if general dental and orthodontic benefits are different and you have entered Ortho Lifetime Max and Percentage as Benefit Information.
To exclude patient clones from the insurance verification list, see Insurance Verification Setup.
Sheets are viewable in both the original and clone account. If the original patient is selected, sheets for the original patient will show the clone name in parentheses. If the clone is selected, sheets for the clone will show the original patient name in parentheses. For example, if Carrie (original) is selected, the sheet will show as (CARRIE) Exam Sheet.
Problem: We created our original patient using all capital letters for first and last name. Now I am blocked from creating a clone.
Solution: Change the original patient name so first and/or last name is not in all capital letters. Then you will be allowed to create the clone.
Problem: The wrong account (original patient) has been flagged as the clone. How do I fix this?
Solution: On the Edit Patient Information window, Other tab, you can swap the patient and clone.
Used clones used prior to version 14.2
If you used clone patients labeled in ALL CAPS prior to version 14.2, the clone patients may already exist in your bridged software. If you enable Patient Clone, you may have trouble accessing these patients in the bridged software. This is because Open Dental, by default, will send the original patient, not the clone, when the bridge button is clicked. To get the clone to show, you must select the patient clone in the bridged software, or disable Patient Clone before clicking the bridge button.
As a solution, we recommend the following:
- Disable Patient Clone in Show Features.
- Open the bridged software, then move the clone's images to the original patient.
- Turn Patient Clone back on.
Now all the images will be associated with the original patient. When the bridge is launched, all images will be in one patient's chart.