How to Tell Patients You Dropped Their PPO

Let’s say you’ve done the appropriate analysis and you and your advisors have determined it’s best for the dental practice to drop a PPO plan.  What do you tell your patients?  If you want to effectively communicate your transition to out-of-network status, you need to consider the things that matter most to your dental patients.

Dental Insurance

When patients first hear that you are no longer a PPO provider for their plan, most will automatically assume you no longer take their insurance and they will have to find another dentist.  Therefore, you cannot emphasize enough that you still accept insurance from the de-contracted plan, you will still bill insurance, and patients can continue coming to see you.  None of that changes.

Next, patients will wonder how much the change will cost them.  Even though insurance companies vary in how much they will share about out-of-network benefits, proactive dental teams find a way to get as accurate an estimate as possible.  Some teams provide dental codes and specific instructions to inquiring patients, who can then call and get the out-of-network information they need.

Dental Receptionist1

Finally, some patients may ask why the practice changed to out-of-network.  It is important to not use this as an opening to bash someone’s insurance, no matter how poorly it pays.  Remember that people view dental insurance as an important benefit, and some will take it personally if you criticize their benefit.  Instead, let patients know that you are shifting to an out-of-network provider to lessen the red tape involved in dealing with insurance companies.  Some practices also tell patients that they prefer to focus on lower volume and more time with patients, and that goal is easier to realize when you are out-of-network.

Not only doyou need to study the full impact of dropping a PPO plan before you do it, but you also need to prepare for how you will inform your patients of the change.  By focusing on the aforementioned points, you will improve the odds of retaining patients after you transition to an out-of-network provider.

Comments (1)

  1. Walter Potter says:

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