First of all, Mr.Yen’s videos are very informative and helpful. My question is more about accounts receivables and billing issues. I am an associate in multiple practices, one of them is based on collections. Usually my AR’s are well reflected on paper but not so much on my actual pay check. My understanding is that the main Managers are very busy collecting for the owners and they are unable to spend enough time for the associates in practice which translates into poor collections (and accumulating production on paper).
It is highly difficult to track if the payments were made from the companies by myself, usually, I am told they haven’t received the collections yet, and unless they are entered in the system, their is no way to track what’s pending in the mail.
I came across a useful link (E Assist Dental Billing) http://dentalbilling.com which seems to be very helpful for dentists in US; however, I cannot validate since its more from online reviews and Facebook reviews.
My questions is
1. Are such services available in Canada in different provinces? and
2. How can associates track the insurance payments. I can track my day sheets though how can I track what’s been sent to the office from the companies , may be from the comfort of my time and convenience online. Is there a way for associate dentists can log into the insurance companies to check (as all the times as an associate I have to depend on the office staff to do that part)?
As an associate I find myself very vulnerable to such situations and at the same time I would not like to project my untrusting dilemma towards the collecting staff. I am looking for a fair solution without coming across unprofessional.
This is the inherent problem of being paid based on collections. You have no control over the collection policies of the practice, their effectiveness of collecting accounts, or their competence in accounting in general. Are payments applied to the oldest account first? Or to the primary dentist’s account? When are accounts written off and who’s decision is that? Does the associate have any say in that? It’s not likely. Yet the associate has a certain percent stake in that debt. You sound like you are quite on the ball (many associates don’t pay attention to such matters and simply take what they are given). Clearly the owner has an interest in collecting the accounts as well… but if an associate is more competent, more conscientious, or cares more about accuracy than the primary dentist, then there is little that can be done, save negotiating a slightly lower payment scheme based on production, which many owners are unwilling to do. I would say that you have a written record of all your accounts so you know when payments are made and what is written off. Unwillingness of a practice to provide you with such information should be a red flag. The fact that there is any distinction made by staff to collect owners accounts over associates is absolutely inappropriate.
Some insurance companies are moving to electronic payments and SunLife allows providers to access payment statements online. I am not sure if the associate dentist can access it, or only the billing dentist… and you need to be clear on whether claims are being submitted under your name and number, or the owner’s name and number.
I respect the tactfulness of your approach, but this is not a trust issue, but an accuracy and fairness issue. Most claims for basic services are adjudicated and paid very quickly (sometimes instantaneously). Crowns, etc. without prior approval may take longer. You are entitled to be paid for the work you have done. I think taking up the issue with the owner, as you have posed it in your message here would be quite appropriate.
Thank you so much for your feedback. I think i will Go with your suggestion to talk about it with the principal dentist.