- Insurance checks that have been cashed by the practice, but not posted to the appropriate patient’s ledger. This makes it appear to be an outstanding claim and the team ends up wasting time following up on claims that have actually already been paid.
- Insurance company payments via credit card remit. This can create a bookkeeping mess because most software isn't equipped to enter these payments, which increases the amount of time the team needs to spend putting the payment in the system. In addition, the practice pays merchant fees and loses approximately 3% on all insurance payments, which can add up quickly.
- Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT) payments that are deposited directly into the doctor’s account and not posted to the ledger. This form of payment can be convenient, but there needs to be communication between the doctor and the team so they know the date and amount of payment. In addition, it is best practice for team members to login to insurance company’s website weekly to check for these payments (if they do not receive an email from the insurance company).
- Inaccurate insurance information that is entered into the practice management software. This leads to delayed claims and time wasted when following up on unpaid claims. It also doesn’t allow the practice to leverage the information among other patients.
Working at the front desk is a very challenging position. The constant interruptions are a part of the job but from a productivity standpoint, a nightmare. The multi-tasking that is needed is inefficient and causes more mistakes. That is why it is always good to have another set of eyes on your insurance processes.
It also illustrates the importance of training and education in regards to working with insurance. Our work through Virtual Dental Office has lead to the development of DentalInsuranceNavigator.com, because we have seen the need for more team knowledge on dental insurance.