The MacPractice window consists of 3 main areas, the toolbar, the sidebar, and the detail area.
The very top of the window is the toolbar. It contains the ability icons which allow you to switch between different abilities in MacPractice. Abilities perform different functions in MacPractice, or contain a different set of records or information. For example, the Patient's ability contains your patient’s demographic and billing information, and allows you to create new patients. Once your patients have been entered, the Schedule ability allows you to schedule appointments for those patients; and the Notes ability allows you to create notes for those patients. Not all abilities are patient-related abilities, however, the References ability, for example, allows you to manage and maintain non-patient information such as your insurance companies and procedure codes. As we click on each ability icon, you will notice that the rest of the window changes.
Below the toolbar, on the left you will see the sidebar. The sidebar appears in every ability and will display a list of all the records within that ability. The Patient’s ability gives you a list of patients in the sidebar, the Schedule ability a list of appointments and other scheduling items like Transparencies and Resources. The rest of the abilities will work the same; the sidebar in the Notes ability displays Note Templates and patient notes, the Rx ability a list of prescriptions and medications, and so on.
As you select records in the sidebar, you will also notice that the main area of the screen will change. This is the detail area, and it displays the information associated to the selected record. The detail area is where you will actually do most of your data-entry, or perform actions in MacPractice. You can think of the toolbar and sidebar as the hierarchy that allows you to find and choose the record you wish to work with, and the detail area as the main work area.