How to get patients to pay their bills
How to get patients to pay their bills. It’s always best to encourage your patients to pay at the time of service. Many staff members can become nervous or uncomfortable when asking patients to pay. You need someone with a strong and confident personality to be in charge of getting the payments at the time of service. It’s very important to have a system that works in your office. Communication is the key to getting your payments on time. Make sure your staff is explaining to the patient exactly what services they will be performing, how much everything will cost, and most importantly confirm that the patient is accepting your treatment plan and prices.
- For example: Your staff should never just tell the patient they are due for x-rays and perform the service without confirming with the patient that they are comfortable with the extra expense.
Displaying signs in your waiting room explaining to the patients to please update any insurance changes, pay at the time of service, or to please prepay before your appointment is not acceptable. These signs will completely take away from the communication between your staff and your patients. Your patients need/want to be told what to do at their appointments… This is why you pay your staff. The most effective way to receive your payment is to have your staff just simply ask for payment after you have rendered services. Always accept all major credit cards, checks, and cash. Make the process as simple and convenient as possible for the patient.
It is extremely important to respect your patients privacy. Make certain your office is designed in a way that allows complete privacy between your patient and your staff member asking for the payment. It is highly recommended to have a staff member escort the patient to the front desk after their exam is complete. The staff member asking for the payment should always be prepared to present the bill to the patient and explain all services and costs. If the patient is unable to pay in full at the time of service, always have options for a payment plan ready to discuss in private with the patient. Remember… some payment is better than none, always try your best to accommodate the patient with affordable payment plans if necessary.
It’s never easy to discuss money, but clear and direct communication will help improve the financial situation within your dental office.