Your Practice May Be Losing Money Because You Don’t Understand Dental Insurance

In an article from Dentistry IQ written by Jennifer Schultz, she explains how many dental practices lose money because of their misunderstandings in dental insurance. Schultz states that during the 20 years she has spent in the dental industry, she has seen practices lose money because of costly mistakes. Here are some of the errors that you might be making:

  • Writing off money when it is not necessary
  • Missing the timely filing deadline for insurance claims
  • Submitting PPO plan fees on the insurance claim form
  • Not charging the full practice fee when procedures are not covered by insurance (when applicable)
  • Not following up on unpaid insurance claims
  • Credentialing errors
  • Not leveraging benefit information in the practice management software
  • Not reading or understanding the PPO contract
  • Not asking for a fee schedule of the PPO plan before signing
  • Not knowing which companies the practice is in network for

This can all be prevented with proper training and education. Schultz collaborated with other leading dental experts to develop Dental Insurance Navigator. It’s a membership website that provides your entire dental team with education and training on all things dental insurance. Learn more about this great resource here: Is Your Dental Practice Losing Money Because You Don’t Understand Insurance?

Dental Health Care May Put A Strain On Household Finances

dental health careMany households in America do not have dental insurance because they simply cannot afford it.  But having to pay for dental health care can put a strain on household finances in many other countries as well.

In an article from Medical News Today, they write about a new study that showed that some catastrophic dental expenses were equal to or higher than 40 percent of some household’s capacity to pay.

Dental services can cost households a large portion of their available income and push many people into long term debt. Dental public health advocates should push for dental care to be included in discussions about health coverage. Read the full article from Medical News Today here: High costs of dental care leave many with too little money for basic necessities – Medical News Today.

Tips For Saving On Dental Costs

dental costsMany people avoid the dentist because they simply don’t have the money to fork over for dental treatment.  Dental treatment is known to be very expensive in the United States, in Europe and Australia. But if you wait to see the dentist, the costs only get more expensive because you may find yourself in an emergency situation.  There are a few tips for saving on dental costs.

Dental insurance – Many employers do provide dental insurance plans for their employees.  If not you can pay for one on your own.  It is similar to medical insurance in that you pay certain premiums and then the company covers dental costs for you. If you do have a dental insurance plan, you may find that it is especially good for preventative care coverage.  There may still be additional costs when you see the dentist.

Dental tourism – This is an up and coming trend that involves traveling to other countries, that have less expensive dental costs, to get dental treatment. One place that many travel for oral hygiene and dental care treatments is Asia.  Another advantage, besides the less expensive costs, is the opportunity to see new places while getting your teeth taken care of.  You may find that even with the cost of travel, you will save costs.

Free dental care – This is a little bit deceiving because though they are labeled “free”, these dental treatments do usually cost some money.  But the amount is very minimal.  They are usually offered through charity organizations, and are usually only offered to low income families or people with diseases.

Discount dental plans – These plans are a bit different than traditional dental insurance.  You still pay a premium in order to be eligible for the discount, but you can save from 20 to 60 percent on most dental treatments whether they are restorative or cosmetic. It also allows you to find the dentist that will offer you the best discount and which treatments will be the most discounted.

5 Tips To Save On Dental Costs|Dental Health Site

Dental Membership Plans

What is a Dental Wellness Membership Plan?

Dental membership plans allow patients to purchase a membership to a specific dental practice who provides all their dental needs.  These include things like cleanings, exams, x-rays, and savings on other procedures. This is a great way for dental practices to get business from patients that are not insured.

Research has shown that the number one reason that patients avoid the dentist is because they don’t have any dental insurance. Currently, 46% of potential patients in the US do not have dental insurance. If a dental practice offers a membership plan they can increase their patient numbers and help people out.

Membership plans are simple and easy for patients to understand as many probably hold membership plans to other service providers. Patients make a small monthly payment to receive dental services, and as a loyal member they also receive discounts on other pricey procedures. Because they are paying monthly, it avoids a unexpected costly expense and makes it easier on the patient.

Another great thing about membership plans is that it puts the responsibility of appointments on the patient. The dental professional doesn’t have to chase existing patients with phone calls and emails to make and maintain their hygiene appointments. Because the patient is paying their monthly fee, they are more likely to stay on top of those appointments so they get their money’s worth.

Lastly, a dental membership plan gives dental practices more control over fees. Dental practices normally don’t have much control over fees and payments from dental insurance companies. With a membership plan, the practice sets the membership prices, fees and any exclusions for discounted services in order to be in control of their own revenues.

The 5 Reasons Dental Membership Plans Work|Dental Town

Dental Discount Plans

5655284-gold-metal-percentage-symbol-with-an-arrow-downVisiting your dentist for regular cleanings and preventative care can save you a lot of money, not to mention pain, down the road. But even preventative dental expenses can add up quickly, especially if you don’t have dental insurance.  An option for you might be dental discount plans.

So what is the difference between dental insurance and dental discount plans? Dental insurance works in the same way your medical insurance plan does. Depending on your plan and level of coverage, you may pay higher monthly premiums but have smaller copays or you may pay a smaller premium for less coverage and a bigger copay or deductible.  With dental insurance you pay the monthly premium regardless of whether or not you visit the dentist. And dental insurance usually has a maximum yearly amount that they will cover.

With a discount dental plan, you only pay for the services you actually use, but at a reduced fee. There aren’t any deductibles or yearly maximums. Discount dental plan fees are usually less than what you might pay for premiums through an employer insurance plan.

Are Dental Discount Plans Worth It? | AZ Family Dental