PATIENT ADVOCATEYOUR CHOICESDENTAL RECORDSBUDGET SUPPORTInsurance BenefitsNEED A DENTIST?PERIO vs CLEANINGPatients Bill of RightsDentists Bill of RightsLifetime AchievementAbout Phyllis Waite

Enter subhead content here

REQUESTING YOUR RECORDS:   I suggest you edit, copy and paste the email message I've included in this PATIENT ADVOCATE memo to the appropriate administrative dental team member.

Fact:    All the x-rays, clinical notes and financial records is your property so your dentist should NOT withhold anything you request.   If they request a fee, do what you are comfortable with however I recommend you simply say ‘that feels petty given I am a patient of record and you are merely transferring electronically.' 

1) Most recent full mouth x-rays.   Comprehensive x-rays.   The American Dental Association's (ADA) standard of care is no longer than 4-5 years.  If your dental office staff says they only take ‘panos', request them.  (Circular panographic views are used by specialists for surgical procedures and are not considered clear enough for cavity detection.   #2 below is required to detect cavities when a general dentist takes panos.)  

2) Most recent check up (bite-wing) x-rays.   Cavity detecting x-rays that capture only back teeth where most cavities occur.   ADA Standard of care is at least 12-24 months depending on your bone health and decay rate.   Every 6-12 months for patients with health conditions or taking medication that make them prone to decay, or they inherited weak enamel...'soft teeth'.   

Fact: Decay declines as we age due to reduced sugar intake and a developmental crevice in enamel that is prone to decay is generally treated during adolescence.    

3)  Periodontal probing documentation:  If they do not have computer software, they can scan chart pages and attach.   If expensive periodontal treatment has been recommended, having a history of multiple perio probing CHARTS is IMPORTANT and will allow us to discuss your choices. (Ask them not to fax as FORM has very small numbers and 3, 5, 6 & 8 often look alike!)    

4)  Most recent ‘complete exam treatment recommendations/treatment plan' including pending treatment.  

5)  Account ledger.   If you have been with the practice over 5 years, request MOST RECENT 5 YEARS.

6)  Clinical Notes BY DATE:  a) If appointment is to provide treatment on an existing treatment plan, notes will have any unusual findings if any and confirm actual procedures performed.   Billable and included in primary procedures.  b) If appointment is to address your concern, notes will have what you are experiencing, diagnostics, clinical findings and recommended treatment, follow up or home care instructions.  If treatment is provided the same day, notes will include procedures performed.


SUPPORT CONTACTING PREVIOUS OFFICE & REQUESTING RECORDS:  Confirm you have the direct email of dental team member responsible for transferring electronic records.  Forward to Phyllis as you wish.


I have met someone in my senior community <at exercise class, through a friend, etc.> who recently retired from forty five years in the dental profession.  Our discussions about the increasing challenges and risks of senior patient dental choices have motivated me to request the following so she can help me understand more about the kind of treatment I want.  My intention is to gain confidence in future treatment decisions, feel secure I am making decisions that will maximize keeping my teeth through life and minimize avoidable expenses.  

 This email acts as my written authorization for you to email my dental records as listed below.  Your prompt reply when I can expect to receive your email with attachments will be appreciated.   

1) Most recent full mouth x-rays, panographic x-ray or CT SCAN.

2) Most recent checkup (bite-wing) x-rays.   

3) Periodontal probing chart documentation.  Send all on record please.  Scan if manual form.  

4) Most recent ‘complete exam treatment recommendations/treatment plan' including pending treatment.  

5) Account ledger starting January 2016 (or my first visit if later).

6) Clinical notes starting same date as account ledger.    

I welcome your call if anything further is required from me to receive all of the above.

 <Your name and preferred contact number>   Enter content here

Enter content here

Enter content here

Enter content here