One Dental Billing

Key Challenges in Dental Billing & Common Dental Billing Issues and How to Overcome Them?

Dental businesses encounter a variety of billing and coding issues in today’s healthcare system. CDT codes are prone to frequent changes that can be difficult to decipher. Billing for dental operations and getting insurance claims accepted can be time-consuming. Dental medical billing or submitting dental operations to a patient’s medical plan can be even more difficult. Outsourced dental billing services can help practises overcome these obstacles, but they must be aware of the common billing and coding issues that might hurt their bottom line. Unpaid medical bills account for 52% of collection services, according to the US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. About 43 million people owe money on their medical bills, illustrating the difficulty that a practise has in collecting the amount.

The problem of dental billing hangs large and gives rise to some key challenges in medical billing services for dentists. Here are some of the many obstacles faced by dentists in their medical billing.

1. Unexpected challenges: Covid-19
Eddie Crouch, chair of the British Dental Association, says there is “no question” that Covid-19 is the biggest challenge the global dental profession has ever faced. He also points out that the effects of the pandemic on dentistry won’t end with Covid-19 itself. Repercussions are likely to continue for many, many years to come.
Covid-19 has exposed some serious problems with the industry. Elements that were shaky before (dental inequality, for example) have been broken by the pandemic. Rebuilding and reforming the industry will be a big challenge for current and future dentists.

2. More Patients Owing
Without an effective follow-up solution, you will end up with more patients who make away with unpaid bills. Most dental patients are under one insurance policy or another. As these pile-up errors are inevitable which makes claims impossible to collect.
As the realization that losses are increasing, the common reaction is to increase the number of patients you attend. The dentist now works overtime in a bid to increase revenue. This is usually not an ideal approach, as collections will still remain low, with more patients filing unverified insurance or delaying in payments.

3. Denied Insurance Claims:
Unpaid treatments are not the only problem. As insurance claims are denied, appeals need to be made to ensure that reversals or claims are successful and you collect what you are owed.

4. Not enough time:
Billing becomes a heavy burden on practices when only one person has to;

  • Patient attention in the office
  • Treatment plans
  • Calls
  • Insurance claims
  • Post credits
  • Appeals to denied claims
  • Manage account receivables

This deprives you and your staff of time to focus on income-generating aspects of the practice. Your main focus will be limited to fixing the many things that are not going right, oftentimes neglecting to pay attention to detail when processing billings.

5. An affected patient ledger:
As the toll weighs on you the office manager, patients are bound to turn away from your practice. How often have you heard, “…their service is good but their billing is terrible…?”. A loss in patients also means a loss in revenue which could, in turn, lead to a loss of your whole business.

Solutions to common dental billing issues:

Get good I.T solutions:
Investing in simple filing and organizing software solutions. These need not bein in your office. Specialists can be outsourced to your existing team, these virtual team members come in to assist your practice.
While still on the issue of I.T there is a need to secure your online network should you choose to have one installed. This ensures that patient data is secured at all tome. Avoid the advent of costly hacks or mistakes. This also builds trust between you and your patients.

Insource insurance verification:
Close to 30 % of revenue is lost to unverified insurance claims. This means that there is a need to have professionals. As claims get well managed you are able to spot procedures that rent covered by a particular policy. This makes it easy for you to tell your patients on how to get the best medical procedure they need without the stress of shortfall or denied claims. This also ensures you always see a successful claim.

With a team complimenting your accounting. You get quicker responses on claims filed. This quick turnaround time makes it possible for you to improve your billing. There is also the added advantage of having errors eliminated from all your paperwork.



Final thoughts

Keeping an eye out for these challenges will make it much easier to combat them if they arise. Some, like communication and motivation issues, or impending burnout, are easier to nip in the bud if you’re alert to their warning signs.
By staying alert to these common issues, you can make sure that your practice is productive, highly-rated, and a great place to work.

We laid the foundation of One Dental Billing on the principle that “every dental office deserves a streamlined billing process.”

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