Dentist with a patient discuss dental insurance verification

“My patient is due for bitewings today, he wants to know if his insurance will cover them. Can you check?” If this question is aimed at your front office team each day, it’s time for a new insurance verification system. So let’s dive into the 3 benefits of a dental insurance verification process.

The term “Revenue Cycle Management” (or RCM if we’re being trendy) is not new, but it is fairly new to the dental space. Dental insurance verification is the birthplace of the entire revenue cycle process and arguably the most crucial step. Done incorrectly or not done at all can lead to denials, unexpected patient balances, and missed revenue. The easiest way to ensure a smooth billing cycle is to start with proper insurance verification. Advancements in technology have made it so there is no excuse to skip this step.

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3 Benefits of a Dental Insurance Verification Process

1. Patient Retention

Is there anything more important? Being able to provide your patients with an accurate treatment cost estimate is not only helpful in treatment presentation, but also required in some states (check your state laws on this). Patients want to feel as though you are considerate of their finances, and surprise bills will portray the opposite of this. Great patient care is certainly clinical but also financial. When there are frequent errors with billing, patients quickly lose trust in a practice and seek treatment elsewhere. The most common negative review patients leave are in relation to the billing department; so not only will your practice lose patients but you could be scaring away new ones as well.

 2. Avoiding Denials & Rejections

As many as 90% of denials are preventable. Verifying insurance coverage ensures claims are submitted with accurate information and significantly reduces rejections, the top cause of delayed payments. Being able to view plan details and code specific limitations provides the office with the tools needed to submit clean claims and get paid faster. Claim denials can cost providers 5-10% of their annual revenue. For a $ 1,000,000-a-year practice that’s $50,000-$100,000 being left on the table! These are large numbers with a significant impact to your practices’ financial health. Verifications can reduce denials by 75%, helping you achieve that gold standard metric of a 95%-99% collection rate.

3. Improving Collections

Insurance verifications allow you to collect the appropriate patient co-pay amount and maximize insurance reimbursement; in turn keeping your Accounts Receivable in great shape. Your production numbers can look fantastic, but your collection numbers are inevitably what matter at the end of the day. A large part of treatment presentation, from a patient’s perspective, is what their financial obligation will be. When you are able to provide an accurate estimate of their out-of-pocket expense, there will be no surprises when they arrive at their appointment.

Looking at the Big Picture

The insurance verification process is a critical component to the revenue cycle and your practice as a whole. By investing time and/or resources into this process, your practice can expect to reduce claim rejections, receive timely payments from patients, and streamline the billing process. The insurance verification process can be a cumbersome and time-consuming task for any dental practice, which is why it often gets pushed to the back burner. If your staff does not have enough time in the day to complete this, rely on some of the wonderful resources available to you. By onboarding a dental insurance verification company, your in-office staff can sigh a breath of relief while being able to provide a fantastic experience to the patients in front of them.

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