The office attempts to schedule appointments at your convenience and when time is available. Preschool children should be seen in the morning because they are fresher and we can work more slowly with the child for their comfort. School children with a lot of work to be done are seen in the morning for the same reason. Dental appointments are an excused absence. Missing school can be kept to a minimum when regular dental care is continued.
Oral hygiene examinations and cleanings are scheduled with our hygiene staff. These recare appointments are made six months in advance for your convenience. If you cannot make an appointment or will be late, please call our office. We realize that unexpected things can happen, but we ask for your assistance in this regard, as we make every effort to stay on schedule. Please remember, we run on children's time, not adult time.
On their FIRST official check-up visit, your child might be apprehensive and want you to be with him/her. If this is necessary, you may accompany your child during this first visit to see our dental facility and treatment procedures. However, during FUTURE visits, we ask that you allow your child to accompany our competent staff through the dental experience. We are all highly experienced in helping children overcome anxiety. Separation anxiety is not uncommon in children, so please try not to be concerned if your child exhibits some negative behavior, this is normal and will soon diminish. Studies and experience have shown that most children over the age of 3 react more positively when permitted to experience the dental visit on their own and in an environment designed for children.
Please feel free to ask questions concerning your child's dental treatment at any time.
Payment for professional services is due at the time dental treatment is provided. Every effort will be made to provide a treatment plan which fits your timetable and budget, and gives your child the best possible care. We accept cash, personal checks, debit cards and most major credit cards.
If we have received all of your insurance information before the day of the appointment, we will be happy to file your claim for you. You must be familiar with your insurance benefits, as we will collect from you the estimated amount insurance is not expected to pay. You are responsible for any balance on your account after 60 days, whether insurance has paid or not. We will be glad to send a refund to you once insurance has paid us.
PLEASE UNDERSTAND that we file dental insurance as a courtesy to our patients. We do not have a contract with your insurance company, only you do. We are not responsible for how your insurance company handles its claims or for what benefits they pay on a claim. We can only assist you in estimating your portion of the cost of treatment, we at no time guarantee what your insurance will or will not do with each claim. We also can not be responsible for any errors in filing your insurance, once again we file claims as a courtesy to you.
Fact 1 - NO INSURANCE PAYS 100% OF ALL PROCEDURES
Dental insurance is meant to be an aid in receiving dental care. Many patients think that their insurance pays 90%-100% of all dental fees. This is not true! Most plans only pay between 50%-80% of the average total fee. Some pay more, some pay less. The percentage paid is usually determined by how much you or your employer has paid for coverage or the type of contract your employer has set up with the insurance company.
Fact 2 - BENEFITS ARE NOT DETERMINED BY OUR OFFICE
You may have noticed that sometimes your dental insurer reimburses you or the dentist at a lower rate than the dentist's actual fee. Frequently, insurance companies state that the reimbursement was reduced because your dentist's fee has exceeded the usual, customary, or reasonable fee ("UCR") used by the company.
A statement such as this gives the impression that any fee greater than the amount paid by the insurance company is unreasonable or well above what most dentists in the area charge for a certain service. This can be very misleading and simply is not accurate.
Insurance companies set their own schedules and each company uses a different set of fees they consider allowable. These allowable fees may vary widely because each company collects fee information from claims it processes. The insurance company then takes this data and arbitrarily chooses a level they call the "allowable" UCR Fee. Frequently this data can be three to five years old and these "allowable" fees are set by the insurance company so they can make a net 20%-30% profit.
Unfortunately, insurance companies imply that your dentist is "overcharging" rather than say that they are "underpaying" or that their benefits are low. In general, the less expensive insurance policy will use a lower usual, customary, or reasonable (UCR) figure.
Fact 3 - DEDUCTIBLES & CO-PAYMENTS MUST BE CONSIDERED
When estimating dental benefits, deductibles and percentages must be considered. To illustrate, assume the fee for service is $150.00. Assuming that the insurance company allows $150.00 as its usual and customary (UCR) fee, we can figure out what benefits will be paid. First a deductible (paid by you), on average $50, is subtracted, leaving $100.00. The plan then pays 80% for this particular procedure. The insurance company will then pay 80% of $100.00, or $80.00. Out of a $150.00 fee they will pay an estimated $80.00 leaving a remaining portion of $70.00 (to be paid by the patient). Of course, if the UCR is less than $150.00 or your plan pays only at 50% then the insurance benefits will also be significantly less.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, please keep us informed of any insurance changes such as policy name, insurance company address, or a change of employment.
This notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to this information. Please review it carefully. Click here to read/print the Notice of Privacy Practices.