Ask the Front Office Professional- An Advice Column you can Count On!
Intro to column:
Hi eAssist Nation subscribers! I am Kristen and was a team leader with eAssist for over a year. I launched 70 offices with eAssist and maybe even some of you who subscribe and read our newsletter are familiar with me from team leading. Using my diverse practice background and experience I have been able to answer many office manager’s questions on billing procedures, general advice, and best practices. I started this column in hopes to help more than one single office manager and to give all of you access to my opinions/advice. Unless a direct sited fact from a trusted source, anything you read here is conjecture and should not be taken as a definitive or solitary answer. Happy reading!
Q&As Relevant to every Office that accepts and bills Insurance
- Q: What reports for Dentrix software do you suggest a practice run on a regular basis to track numbers of the practice? – (Samantha B. OM in Redwood, CA)
A: Hi Samantha! We appreciate you submitting your question to the column. All doctors should keep an eye on the reports to make sure there are no problems with software settings or even rare human errors that could throw off the entire numbers reporting for the year. For instance, if you are running a daysheet report for procedures by chronological order you may see that you accidentally entered a fee incorrectly with extra digits ie: a PA for 23.00 entered as 2300.00 unintentionally inflating the production of the day and negatively affecting the collections to production ratio. Tracking your daily production and collections checking that everything has been entered accurately is a must for proper checks and balances before closing out the month or sending an erroneous claim. The reports and frequencies for Dentrix that I recommend are as follows:
Daily: Daysheet Report for Production, Deposit Report, Adjustments Report, Practice Analysis
Weekly: Provider A/R totals report, Insurance Claim Aging report, Aging report, Insurance Claims not sent Report, and Procedures not Attached to Insurance Report
Monthly: Close out EOM and then run the month end reports: In the Ledger, select Month End > Month End Update. It will recommend that you should have a backup.
- Q: What is the best way to transition from paper to EMR to be able to sign up for a remote billing service? – (Destine M. Colorado)
A: Greetings Destine! My recommendation is to get in contact with a digital expert that can walk you through the entire process from start to finish. eAssist has recommended Dr. Lavine at Digital Dentist for years: 866-204-3398. The process is quite painless I recommend once you start using an electronic chart template, perio charting and digital xrays to sign up for remote billing services. Your eAssist team can partner with your admin staff to request any old documents needed to follow up on and get aged claims paid systematically is: one week at a time so your staff is not overwhelmed and charts will get scanned into the system in an orderly fashion.
- Q: Do you have ideas or a list of duties to give to the back and front office staff during downtime if they do not wish to clock out any suggestions are appreciated, TIA! -(Sheree E. Doylestown PA)
A: Hi Sheree, thanks so much for asking! My theory is that a cross trained staff who are willing to jump in and help to reach the practice goals are the best to have, with that being said, I also suggest a monthly bonus system to increase morale and motivation from employees for increased teamwork and productivity. Here is a list of duties anyone can share during downtime by priority:
1) Check to be sure all instruments are sterilized- trays and set ups ready for next patients
2) Clean, set up, and stock all operatories
3) Clean reception area and office areas
4) Order supplies and organize lab case area
5) Call on any cases that are in the back that do not have appointments scheduled
6) Help front office confirm or prepare for future days patients
7) Call recall patients or patients off the unscheduled tx list referencing insurance benefits remaining
8) Scan any forms or documents that need to go into patient EMR charts
9) Take out trash, Laundry, sweeping, mopping, deep cleaning
10) Ask all other staff including Dr if they need anything
Please email me at Kristen.firstname.lastname@example.org for my expertise and to tap into our network of 400+ experienced office managers nationwide! Thanks.
Dental Billing Tips and News for Pros; Edition #131