The clearinghouse used by Dentrix Ascend to transmit electronic claims only accepts JPEG files for attachments. This means that for any narratives and other non-picture items you wish to use as claim attachments must be converted to a JPEG format before uploading them to the Document Manager. Most computers come with free screen capture and basic image manipulation or “paint” programs. The easy way to get a JPEG is to just snip a picture from your screen. (Mac users see the note at the end of this post.)

To convert documentation to JPEG:

1. Size your text so you can see it all at once.

How your text looks depends on the program you use. You will often be capturing a clinical note out of Ascend:

Note: If the text is lengthy and you can’t see it all at once in the clinical note window, you may need to copy it out and paste it into something like the free Notepad program that comes with Windows.

2. Take a picture of the text.

Choose your favorite method. Common options included on your computer include:

  • Use the free Windows Snipping Tool. Launch the tool from the Start menu and use your mouse to drag a box around the text you want to capture.
  • Press Alt + PrtScn to capture the active window. You won’t see anything; you just have to believe it’s there until you get to the next step.
  • Use a Chrome extension (e.g. FireShot).

3. Save the picture as a JPEG file.

If you captured a snippet or Chrome extension, the capture is ready as soon as you let go of the mouse. Click File > Save As and make sure to choose JPEG file as the type. Provide a name and location for the file.

If you did a screen capture, switch to the Paint program and click Paste. Your capture appears in the editing window. Click Save As and choose the JPEG format. Provide a name and location for the file.

4. After you have the JPEG file, open the patient’s Document Manager. Click Upload and locate your file. Once you have it in the Document Manager you will be able to open a claim or pre-authorization and attach it through the Claim Detail Attachments tab.

Alternative Method

Another way to convert text files is to get them into PDF and then use a third-party tool to convert PDF to JPEG.

1. Convert the file to PDF.

Most text applications—and specifically, Microsoft Word—natively include a Save as PDF option.

If not, your program should allow you to select Adobe PDF as a “printer”.

2. Convert the PDF to JPEG.

This might involve a small investment. The mother of all PDF-handling software is Adobe Acrobat, available in several flavors but all you need is the most basic. (Note that the free Adobe Reader does NOT support PDF conversion to image files.)

Open the PDF and just follow the menu path to convert your PDF to JPEG. Here’s how it looks in my Adobe Acrobat Pro:

There are many other software programs that provide the same PDF to JPEG functionality. I haven’t tested any of them and make no endorsements. There are free conversion utilities advertised online; but sending your files up into the world wide web is sketchy at best, and potentially harmful at worst.

Additional Information

  • Each JPEG file you attach to a claim can be no greater than 2 MB (2048 KB) in size. You can add up to 10 attachments to a claim.
  • JPG and JPEG are the same thing. Back in the day, Windows required that all the files have a three letter file extension, so the image format created by the Joint Photographic Experts Group was assigned the extension JPG. Mac users just went with JPEG because that limitation didn’t apply.
  • If you convert a multi-page PDF document, when you export it to JPEG each page will be saved as a separate file, with the words “_Page_01”, “_Page02” added to the original file name (plus the .jpg at the end).
  • Pre-Authorization narratives in the box labeled Remarks for Unusual Services are limited to 80 characters when being sent electronically. If you need to include lengthier remarks, consider attaching a narrative through the Document Manager by uploading a JPEG of the narrative you’ve typed.

Mac Users

  1. Right-click your document and select Open With > Preview.
  2. Click the icon just next to the Search. It looks like a little toolbox. Preview will open up its Markup Toolbar, which is roughly equivalent to Microsoft Paint.
  3. Select File > Save As and in the Format window choose JPEG.