Storage and Retention

The manner in which dental records are created and maintained varies. Historically, dentists have used paper charts and ledgers to keep records. However, the use of electronic records, including digital radiography, has grown substantially in Ontario. Dentists are permitted to use electronic records, but they must comply with all requirements of traditional dental records.

In general, clinical, financial and drug records, and radiographic and consultant reports that are made in respect to an individual patient must be maintained for at least 10 years from the date of the last entry in that record. In the case of a minor, these records must be kept for at least 10 years after the day on which the patient reached the age of 18 years. This includes appointment records, lab prescriptions and invoices.

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