Patient Clones are a useful feature for practices that have different types of providers who treat the same patient.

The tool can be used to create one or more clones of the original patient, with data continually synced between patient and clone. For example, a general dentistry office may also provide orthodontic and endodontic treatment.

Turn on Patient Clones

For patient clone options to show in the interface, Patient Clone must be turned on in Show Features.

Patient Clones in the Family Module

Manage patient clones, create new patient clones, and view patient clone relationships in the Family Module.

The original patient is listed in mixed case (e.g., Wright, Aria). Clones are listed in all capital letters (e.g., WRIGHT, ARIA).

The Patient Clones grid shows when one or more patient clones exist. The original patient lists in red with clones listed below.

Clone Super Families

By default, patient clones are added to the original patient's family (listed in the Family Members grid). Another option is to place new patient clones in their own family, and associate the clone to the original via Super Family. This is useful when offices want to maintain separate financial accounts for each clone (e.g., send separate statements for orthodontic versus dentistry work).

To add a clone to a super family, enable the preference, New patient clones use super family instead of regular family. Create the clone. A separate Super Family grid displays in the Family Module with the original patient as the super head and clones as family members.

Add Patient Clones

In the Family Module, select the original patient from the Family Members. In the toolbar, click Add to the right of Clones. The Clone Add window opens.

The Patient to Clone area automatically fills with patient data. Select the clone's primary provider, specialty, and clinic.

Click Clone to create the clone.

Break Patient-Clone Relationships

To break the relationship between a single patient clone and the original patient:

  1. In the Family module, select the patient clone.
  2. Click Break.
  3. A confirmation message shows. Click Yes to break the relationship.

To break all relationships between the original patient and every patient clone:

  1. In the Family module, select the original patient.
  2. Click Break.
  3. A confirmation message shows. Click Yes to break the relationship.

Once the relationship is broken, clones no longer list in the Patient Clones grid, but still lists as family members or super family members if the clone has not been moved from the family or super family.

Link Duplicate Patients as Clones

If a duplicate account exists for a patient, and the duplicate account should be a patient clone, users can use the patient merge tool to merge the duplicate account into a fresh patient clone.

  1. On the original account (the account to be kept), create a patient clone (see above).
  2. Open the Merge Patients tool.
  3. Merge the duplicate account into the newly created patient clone.

Sync Original Patient and Clone

The following information can be synced between the original patient and clones.

First Name Last Name Preferred Name Middle Initial
Responsible Party Patient Status Gender Race
Language SSN Position Address, Address 2, City, State, Zip
Address Note Hm, Wireless, Wk, Phones Email Text Message OK
Billing Type Fee Schedule Credit Type Medicaid ID
Medical Urgent Note Ins Plan Info

Patient forms are not synced, however forms already created on the original patient are copied to the cloned patient. Forms created after the clone has been created are separate between the clone and the original patient.

Insurance coverage amounts are not synced (amounts used and benefits available), so insurance estimates may be inaccurate. To ensure both the original and clone reflect updated amounts, whenever an amount changes for one, add Adjustments to Insurance Benefits to the other.

Note: This may not be an issue if general dental and orthodontic benefits are different and users have entered Ortho Lifetime Max and Percentage as Benefit Information.

Sync Information:

  1. In the Family Module, Family Members grid, select the patient or clone.
    Note: If a user syncs from the clone, all clone names become ALL CAPS, and the original patient name become mixed case (e.g. John L. Smith).
  2. In the toolbar, click Sync.
  3. Click Yes to continue.
  4. A detailed list of synced changes lists.
  5. Click OK to close the window. Click Print to print a copy of all changes.

Technical Details

Bridges to other software: Open Dental always sends the information of the original patient to bridged software, not the clone. If, in the bridged software, information is associated with the clone, users may have issues accessing it. We recommend moving all information to the original patient instead.