Dental Patient Billing Statement Set-Up
Dental patient billing statements can be difficult for patients to understand. And part of our job is to make that easier. So, how can we do this? Let’s start with the balance forward setting. As this is often a place where confusion begins for our patients. And can also be a point of confusion for us. But I want to back up just a bit first. Because we need to visit our billing frequency first.
Daily Patient Statements
I’m a huge fan of daily patient billing. This is a setting we’ll visit as well. But for now, I just want to throw it out there! And I also encourage everyone to call patients with unexpected balances before sending a statement.
Statement date and balance forward date are our first consideration. Statement date is pretty self-explanatory. But what about that balance forward setting? How many times do patients call and ask, “What is this balance forward from?” Great question! But would you like to eliminate the balance forward? Frequent patient statements and follow up will help you with that. But so will this setting.
Dental Patient Billing Statements Default
The balance forward may default to one month ago in your software. However, you can change this. And I recommend you do! Because I follow a 90-day limit on overdue patient balances, that is my cut off and balance forward date. What I mean is, change balance forward date to 90 days previous. And any balance older than 90 days is brought forward as a balance forward. Everything else is itemized for the patient.
Choose Who Will Receive Statements
Dental software typically allows us to choose which patients to send our statements to by name. Where would you want to use this? I use this when I wish to send a statement to one patient and create a record of this in the patient history. And when I wish to make other additional changes for one particular patient. Perhaps I want to print a statement for one patient that does not balance forward at 90 days. Or maybe I want to make a note in the note field for this specific patient.
Dental Patient Billing Statements Through the Alphabet
You may want to avoid running statements in groups of letters. For example, I’ve seen practices send statements for patients who have last names beginning with A – G one week. And then another week will send H – M. Or something like this. It might work well for some, but I just don’t understand why the complication. For me, simple works well. And leaves less room for error or mistakes.
Dental Patient Billing Statements & Settings
By Primary Provider
There is also a filter for the primary provider. This is a valuable tool for multi-provider practices and multi-specialty practices. Especially if there are different team members responsible for different providers. And also if different days are chosen to bill specific providers in larger practices.
Dental Patient Billing Statements By Type
Select the billing type or billing cycle to send statements to. This is another separate field within the patient account initial set-up.
Not every account in the system gets a statement. The billing cycle or type setting helps us with this.
Claims pending insurance is another choice. In general, I do not want to send statements with claims pending. That could be a lot of statements.
For those who choose to send statements with claims pending, there are additional choices. For example, we can set the dollar amount of the estimated patient portion we wish to set the statement to go out on.
Credit Card Options
Allow credit card payment or not? My vote is yes! Print account aging? For me, this is another yes! Show the age of the balance due. If not billed since whatever date we choose.
Amount to Bill
Maximum balance to bill? I like to go with $3.00. Balances under $3.00 are not a balance I choose to bill. Include credit balances? I do not send credit balance statements to patients.