FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dental patients who can’t afford the work they need turn to dental financing. Dentists prefer offering outside financing, meeting patients’ dental needs while avoiding unpleasant financial situations.
December 15, 2008 (San Francisco, California) Dental financing is an important financial tool for dentists and dental patients alike. Fully 88% of dental practices offer outside financing options, according to a survey by dental marketing resource The Wealthy Dentist.
With the current economic crisis leaving consumers with less disposable income, some may be tempted to avoid important but expensive dental treatments. Dental practices want to meet the oral health needs of their patients, but dental practice management requires a steady cash flow.
“It is more difficult now for people to afford one more payment that they need to come up with the money for. In this economic climate, if it doesn’t hurt to offer financing if they want to wait,” advised a Pennsylvania dentist.
Inside dental financing has fallen out of favor, as it leaves dental practices assuming more financial risks and burdens. “We’ve never offered inside financing. Everyone I’ve talked to says DON’T DO IT!” said an Ohio prosthodontist. “We don’t want to get in the middle of financing with patients and deal with any problems, so we farm it out and let them deal with any problems that may crop up if a patient defaults on their payments.”
“Outside financing has been a tremendous financial boon for our practice,” raved an Illinois dentist. “Our accounts receivable used to be an absurdly large number. Patients have 0% financing options, and we get our money within 48 hours of starting treatment. Relationships stay where they should be when the payment is to a third party.”
A few doctors had hesitations about some forms of financing. “Credit card companies charge too much for their hardware, monthly service fees, and percentage of collections,” griped a California dentist.
CareCredit is among the most popular healthcare financing services. “We offer Care Credit and 50/50 start/finish (50% at initial appointment and 50% of fee the day of insert) within the office,” said a New York dentist. “We are surprised by the number of patients who are turned down by the outside agency,” said one oral surgeon. “In most cases, we would have provided in-house arrangements.”
“Trust me: it’s no fun spending all your time on collections and accounts receivable!” said Jim Du Molin, continuing dental education consultant and founder of dental website The Wealthy Dentist. “The best thing you can do for your practice is to outsource as much of that work as possible. You’ll save money, time and headaches.”
Du Molin invites readers to visit his blog at http://www.thewealthydentist.com/blog/599/dental-financing/ and comment on this survey.
Visit http://www.thewealthydentist.com for more Wealthy Dentist survey results on topics such as cosmetic dentistry, dental implants, sleep dentistry, TMJ, dentistry, and braces. Plus, sign up for Jim Du Molin’s free video training program on dental website marketing.
Jim Du Molin