6 Effective Strategies to Improve Accounts Receivable in Your Dental Practice

Setting up an effective management strategy for accounts receivable (AR) is vital to running a successful business. A streamlined and well-organized AR process positively impacts dental practices and enhances the patient experience. 

accounts receivable strategies for your dental practice

Here are some effective accounts receivable strategies for your dental practice that will not only help you manage money conversations better but will also create the ultimate patient experience:

1. Have Open Discussions on Treatment Plans with Patients

Provide a suitable level of detail to ensure that patients realize the need for treatment. This meeting is vital for patients, and it's necessary for the practice. This allows you to help patients understand, in simple terms, why the procedure is required and what the treatment, or absence thereof, might manifest into later. Convincing patients for preventive care and treatment is the most challenging part for most practices. It requires communicating with patients just like you're talking to a friend or family member. These interactions involve only a few minutes, but the payoff can result in less time spent on collecting fees and additional appointments in your schedule.

2. Communicate Through Visual Aids About Expected Results

Offering visual representations to your patients helps them view the results that you will deliver more effectively. Make use of the technology you have within your reach. You can utilize intraoral cameras and the related tools to communicate with each patient's story. Visuals offer a case for treatment.

3. Help Patients Understand Their Insurance Coverage

Patients may require knowledge about their coverage benefits. Most patients may have either not studied their plans carefully or may not understand its layers and level, copays, inclusions, and payments. Even if a patient has examined his or her plan, there may still be some restrictions that are not apparent in the plan outline. This offers you an opportunity to guide and educate your patients.

4. Implement Insurance Verifier Technology

Insurance verifier systems are useful to directly identify which codes require claim attachments to decide a claim. Assessing claim attachment requirements prior to a claim request submission will allow you to attach the relevant documents, like periodontal charts and x-rays, in advance. Ensuring this step in advance, rather than expecting the payer to decline a claim due to the absence of required documentation, not only saves time but keeps revenue rolling more efficiently.

5. Provide Option for Third-Party Patient Financing

Giving an alternative payment option to your patients, like third-party financing, can help manage your accounts receivable. When considering this option, do your study to ensure that you're working with a trustworthy firm that will enhance your patient experience.

6. Manage Claims Electronically

When claims are handed over with inaccurate information, like duplicate data or to the wrong payer, it can lead to rejection. A good AR practice is to handle claims electronically, set up workflows, and free applications from errors before they're submitted. It's also beneficial to have all the related information in one record, including rejection or adjustment information for easy reference in the future.

A streamlined, efficient AR process is crucial to deal with the money conversation challenges in your dental practice and focus on improving patients’ health. Implementing the above ideas will help you add value to your patient experience and therefore help your AR process.

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Steffany Mohan, DDS

Dr. Steffany Mohan, DDS is a highly accomplished dentist, speaker, and coach in dentistry and has been practicing for around 22 years in West Des Moines, IA. She is renowned for her achievements in implant practice management and has established Plaza Dental Group as among the busiest and most thriving dental offices in Iowa