Practice Management

Sharpen your skills in the areas of leadership and practice ownership, marketing, patient management, practice systems and practice transitions.

Four reasons to stock up on equipment sooner
When managing your day-to-day overhead, it can seem challenging to allocate spending to upgrade, enhance or expand your dental equipment. However, being strategic about when to purchase higher-dollar items can help you realize the most value. By filling your supply and equipment needs before the end of this year, you can categorize to your advantage before next year’s tax time and get your practice running at peak efficiency.
Dentists required by new law to use updated informed consent form
Gov. Gavin Newsom signed legislation that revises language in the written informed consent form that dentists must provide to patients prior to administering general anesthesia and deep or moderate sedation. Although the new law does not impact the practice of dentistry, dentists should ensure that beginning Jan. 1, 2020, they are using a consent form that is compliant with the new law.
The Dentists Supply Company issues statement regarding initial ruling in FTC case against dental suppliers accused of conspiracy
An administrative law judge has partially ruled in favor of the Federal Trade Commission’s complaint that dental products distributors conspired not to provide discounts to buying groups. According to the FTC, the judge’s initial decision has held that two of three respondents named in the complaint violated U.S. antitrust laws by conspiring to refuse to provide discounts to, or otherwise serve, buying groups representing dental practitioners.
Online convenience + responsive service = stress-free supply shopping
In addition to controlling their overhead costs, practices of every size are streamlining and saving time by shopping Consistent supply pricing, 24/7 online convenience and responsive customer service have helped make the purchasing process quick and stress-free. In shopping for his New York-based practice, Payam Goudarzi, DDS, discovered better pricing on almost all items compared to what he had been paying competitors.
CDA Journal features 3-D printing in dentistry
The October issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association discusses impacts of the use of 3D printed devices in restorative and regenerative dentistry, as well as in surgical specialties such as oral and maxillofacial surgery and craniofacial surgery.
Stress-free price comparisons that lead to supply savings
Want to save on supplies and small equipment, but don’t have the time to comparison shop? The Dentists Supply Company will do the work for you. Through TDSC’s free service, association members can submit invoices from their current suppliers and let experts find the savings potential on their behalf.
Prescribers can check CURES for misuse of prescription pads
A dentist who writes controlled substance prescriptions can now review CURES (Controlled Substance Review Utilization and Evaluation System) for patients for whom the dentist is listed as a prescriber. This ability to review the list is useful when a dentist has misplaced a prescription pad or has had a prescription pad stolen or when a dentist suspects someone is misusing their DEA number.
Experts from CDA, TDIC and TDSC on-site at ADA meeting in San Francisco
CDA may not be hosting a continuing education convention this fall, but dentists and dental professionals who are attending the ADA FDI World Dental Congress Sept. 5-7 in San Francisco can still stop by the CDA, TDSC and TDIC booths to ask friendly experts all of their questions, learn how to save on dental supplies, obtain free, no-obligation insurance quotes and much more.
Visit The Dentists Supply Company at the ADA FDI World Dental Congress
If you’re attending the ADA’s annual meeting in September, be sure to come see The Dentists Supply Company. Visit booth 1945 of the exhibit hall to connect with TDSC experts, learn how to save big on supplies and play to win prizes.
Peer review can help dentists resolve treatment disputes
CDA members are typically unfamiliar with the peer review process unless they have gone through it themselves or have served on a local peer review committee. Even those who are aware of peer review might not know that the program was recently enhanced to include informal mediation. The purpose of the peer review program is to resolve disputes between patients and dentists, focusing on disputes about the quality or appropriateness of dental treatment.
Dentists collectively save $5M on dental supplies at
In June, The Dentists Supply Company’s online shopping site,, celebrated the second anniversary of its launch to CDA’s full membership Now, there’s a new milestone to celebrate: In July, reached $5 million in combined shopper savings driven by the recent expansion to association members in 47 states.
Dentists' use of Botox requires appropriate dental treatment plan documentation
At the direction of the 2018 CDA House of Delegates, CDA has been working with the Dental Board of California to better understand the scope of practice for general dentists as it relates to the use of cosmetic agents such as Botox and dermal fillers. The house directed CDA to take this action to clear up confusion that arose from the creation of the Elective Facial Cosmetic Surgery permit as it relates to the scope of cosmetic services general dentists may provide.
CDA Journal examines dental anxiety
The August issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association reviews the persistent problem of dental anxiety in dentistry. Articles discuss ways to communicate effectively with fearful patients, the use of virtual reality exposure therapy in treating dental anxiety, and the assessment, diagnosis and management of dental phobia in children and adults.
Members' supply savings adding up through
The Dentists Supply Company is now available in 47 states, offering consistent and competitive supply pricing to more than 100,000 members of organized dentistry. More shoppers means more savings for practices of every size. And association members are enthusiastically sharing how consistent supply pricing, 24/7 online shopping convenience and authorized product sourcing have made one of their favorite ways to shop.
Savings potential at Four practices' price comparisons
With The Dentists Supply Company’s expansion this year, members of organized dentistry nationwide are enjoying the benefits of collective buying power. Through, shoppers continue to see 20% average savings compared to MSRP* on dental supplies and small equipment. The online savings are often even greater when compared to the prices shoppers have been paying other suppliers.
Safety in the dental practice featured in July CDA Journal
The July issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association highlights the importance of dental practice safety and risk management. Articles discuss the legal ramifications of practicing unsafe dentistry, the proper choice and use of emergency medications and the use of checklists to improve patient safety.
TDIC offers tips to prepare dental practices for wildfire season
As some dental practices in California continue to recover from the devastating effects of the 2018 wildfires, The Dentists Insurance Company advises dentists to be prepared for not only the 2019 wildfire season but also for the possibility of year-round wildfire threats. Making sure all practice records, including patient charts and accounts receivable, are backed up often with copies kept in cloud storage or an off-site location is an important step.
Cheers to CDA members on the 2nd anniversary of TDSC's launch
CDA made a bold move when it launched The Dentists Supply Company in 2017. CDA established TDSC as a subsidiary solely focused on helping association members reduce overhead, gain control and stay competitive in a dynamic marketplace. As TDSC celebrates the second anniversary of the site’s launch to CDA’s full membership, see how the company continues to grow and reach new milestones.
New requirement for businesses seeking tax ID numbers
Dentists who are purchasing or starting a practice or making a change to their business structure should be aware of a new IRS requirement. As of May 13, 2019, only individuals with a tax identification number — either a Social Security number or an individual taxpayer identification number — may request an employer identification number.
Cost, convenience and confidence drive shoppers
The Dentists Supply Company has now launched in 47 states, offering consistent and competitive supply pricing to tens of thousands of members of organized dentistry. More shoppers means more savings for practices of every size. And member dentists are enthusiastically sharing how low costs, online convenience and confidence in product quality are making their favorite way to shop.
Notice concerning CDA’s new poster set: Corrected California Minimum Wage notice required
CDA Practice Support has identified two misprints in the 2019-20 Required Employment Poster Sets that were recently mailed to CDA members who are practice owners. To stay in compliance with state regulations, practice owners should download the correct California Minimum Wage notice and print the notice and affix it to page 4 of the 2019-20 poster set.
Put a stop to fake invoices with sample letter from CDA Practice Support
Fake invoices from at least one company are making the rounds in California, with several dentists contacting CDA for advice on how to handle the scam. The dentists, including CDA members in Bakersfield, Fresno and Los Angeles, report receiving invoices from Pinnacle Medical Supply for products that neither they nor any of their staff members ordered.
The Dentists Supply Company expands to deliver savings nationwide
Members of organized dentistry in 47 states can now save significantly on dental supply purchases through The Dentists Supply Company. The national presence for TDSC follows three phased rollouts that started in late 2018 and marks the latest move to extend savings to all 50 states by the end of the year. “This is an exciting time for organized dentistry and dentists served by associations that are looking after their members’ best interests,” said Walt Weber, DDS, TDSC board chair.
Becoming a California-licensed RDA
CDA Practice Support has developed and published two new resources for practice owners who wish to help put their staff on the proper path to become a California-registered dental assistant. Both resources — “Steps to Becoming a California-Registered Dental Assistant” and “Helping Your Out-of-State-Trained Dental Assistant to become a California-Registered Dental Assistant” — are in a one-page format that is easy to follow.
Members benefit from new services added to CDA Endorsed Programs
Three new businesses — CommonBond, HR for Health and WEO Media — have been added to the lineup of CDA Endorsed Programs that have been thoroughly researched, vetted and approved by CDA. Endorsed Programs bring members the lowest prices on products and services that their practices need from vendors they can trust. Members can get more information about these and other Endorsed Programs at CDA Presents in Anaheim May 16-18.
Comparing consistency in supply pricing: Three case studies
By shopping, dentists continue to see 20% average savings through compared to the manufacturers’ suggested retail price*. However, the TDSC difference is often greater when compared to the actual amounts practices have been paying elsewhere. CDA members are seeing how prices can be lower and more stable than their invoiced prices from other suppliers.
Debt collection agencies: Your last resort for patients' past-due accounts
Every practice will come across a debt that needs to be sent to an agency, but such debt should be the exception to the rule. The goal should be to prevent accounts past due, not to collect on them. Start with good policy. A financial policy is pertinent to a practice’s success, and practices should have both internal and external financial policies.
New online form available for reporting dental benefits plan issues
CDA Practice Support introduces a new, secure online submission process for dentists to use to report issues with dental benefits plans. By streamlining the intake process, this form will make it easier for practicing dentists to quickly reach out for assistance and submit issues at their own convenience. To receive assistance, simply submit your issue electronically using the new submission form available online within your account.
Save some green with eco-friendly supplies
Can your practice do good while also doing well? Yes it can! Let The Dentists Supply Company help you save big on green products from trusted brands. As a CDA member, you can shop online for eco-friendly supplies at negotiated discounts, plus free shipping, every day. Just look for the orange leaf icon next to select TDSC supplies or visit to explore.
Dental supply savings at reach members in 13 more states
On April 1, tripartite members in three additional states gained access to significant dental supply savings through, the shopping site of CDA’s newest subsidiary The Dentists Supply Company. Access and savings will reach another 10 states in May, meaning that over two months will effectively double its footprint with savings reaching approximately 40,000 new association members.
Patient selection: Instincts, courage and healthy relationships
Of the nearly 3,500 professional liability claims The Dentists Insurance Company addressed between 2012 and 2017, many could have been avoided or mitigated had the dentist been more cautious about choosing which patients to accept into care. “Being selective in the patients you see goes a long way in avoiding trouble down the road,” said Taiba Solaiman, senior TDIC Risk Management analyst.
Statewide conference in May focuses on future of health care delivery in California
Dentists and other health care providers are encouraged to attend Health Information Technology After Meaningful Use — a statewide conference happening May 13 in Sacramento and hosted by CalHIPSO, an organization formed through a partnership of the California Medical Association, the California Primary Care Association and the California Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems.
TDSC's authentic products offer savings, secure supply chains and peace of mind
When members of organized dentistry purchase supplies through The Dentists Supply Company, they can rest assured that the products are authentic and supplied by a trusted, authorized source. In other words, there are no gray-market goods that could risk patient safety. As small-business owners, it’s important for dentists to make informed decisions about the products they purchase for their practices and patient care.
Five ways CDA members benefit from purpose-driven supply shopping
The Dentists Supply Company continues to grow and offer CDA members unparalleled savings. In fact, shopper savings on dental supplies through have already surpassed $3 million dollars. And the site’s top 10 California shoppers have collectively saved $150,000 so far.* While this membership benefit is helping dentists to see a big difference in supply dollars, it’s not the only reason members are shopping
Remain calm when faced with irate patients
The Dentists Insurance Company reports several calls to its Risk Management Advice Line from practice owners facing irate patients. Typically, these cases stem from patients who are upset over unplanned expenses, treatment plans they consider unnecessary, failure to achieve expected results from cosmetic procedures or a dentist’s refusal to practice outside the standard of care when a patient attempts to dictate treatment.
Little patients are a big deal
Tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Without intervention, this infectious disease can cause lasting impacts on total health and quality of life, even into adulthood. By encouraging little patients and their parents to take an active role in preventive care and by creating comfortable dental visits, your team can help establish good lifelong oral health habits.
Mobile app from ADSA can assist dentists during medical emergencies
A new app developed by the American Dental Society of Anesthesiology emphasizes the early detection of and quick response to medical emergencies that can occur in the dental office. The app allows dentists and their staff to keep track of drug doses and expiration dates and use patient information to calculate personalized drug doses. Crisis checklists assist in providing appropriate interventions with flow charts that evaluate emergency events.
Influencing patient retention in the dental practice
“I need more patients” is a statement I’ve heard often from dentists throughout my career. While new patients are undeniably important to a practice’s success, practice owners should be aware of opportunities they may already have within their existing patient base. According to recent research, the average dental office in America has just a 65 percent patient retention.
Security risk assessment tool updated for smaller practices
All HIPAA-covered entities and their business associates are required to conduct an initial comprehensive security risk assessment to identify “potential risks and vulnerabilities to the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of electronic protected health information. Small- to medium-sized health care practices with one to 10 providers now have an upgraded tool that is specifically designed to assist them with completing this assessment.
Improper billing during practice transitions is risky business
As the dental benefits analyst for CDA Practice Support, my job is to help dentists navigate the ever-changing dental benefits marketplace, and this entails clearing up misconceptions that could place a dentist at risk. In my conversations with dentists who are selling or buying a practice, I’ve found some misconceptions concerning billing dental benefit plans following the sale of a practice.
TDSC Western-states expansion gains media coverage
The Dentists Supply Company’s announcement of its Western-states expansion in November generated publicity in several national dental publications and a regional business journal. The articles highlighted the expanded supply offerings to nine additional states, allowing association members of organized dentistry to benefit from 20 percent average savings on a broad online catalog of supplies. Interim CEO Jim Wiggett spoke with news publications to give insight on how TDSC is making its mark in the $10 billion dental supply industry. Here’s what Wiggett said about
Supply savings at Four practices' price comparisons
With The Dentists Supply Company’s recent expansion, members of organized dentistry in 10 states are now enjoying collective buying power on dental supplies through Shoppers continue to see 20 percent average savings compared to MSRP; however, the online savings are often even greater when compared to the prices they’ve been paying other suppliers.
New serial number required on controlled-substances prescription forms
A new state law requires that tamper-resistant prescription forms for controlled substances have unique serial numbers. These numbers will be linked to corresponding records in California’s prescription-drug monitoring program known as CURES. The requirement is part of Assembly Bill 1753 signed into law last September. New prescription forms should be ordered from a “serial # compliant printer” as indicated on the DOJ’s website.
New items to wear and share from
The Dentists Supply Company continues to expand its online catalog of supplies and small equipment to meet the needs of its growing shopper base. The selection spans everything from adhesives to X-ray materials, plus a few new items designed to bring smiles to the entire practice team. Newly added to is a TDSC Merchandise category that includes fun items to wear and give.
In-office discount plans: Legal requirements and other considerations
In a dental economy dominated by PPOs, dentists are looking for ways to encourage patients, particularly those with limited coverage or no coverage at all, to seek the care they need. According to the ADA, access to dental insurance is the No. 1 predictor of a dental visit due to the patient’s ability to offset their out-of-pocket expense for oral health care.
Six tools for CDA members who are business owners
If you’re like many dentists, you’ve got a multifaceted role as practitioner, practice leader and entrepreneur. With your CDA membership, valuable support comes through tools and expertise available online, by phone and at association events. From protecting your property to streamlining paperwork, tap into dentistry-focused business solutions, starting with these six.
Strong year for TDSC with more dental supply savings to come in 2019
CDA members racked up $2 million in total savings on dental supplies in 2018 through, the shopping site for CDA’s newest subsidiary, The Dentists Supply Company. The $2 million savings milestone reached in September demonstrates the tremendous member interest in TDSC and doubled the $1 million savings milestone that members reached in May. On the heels of that savings milestone came two major announcements about plans for 2019.
CDA offers help with dental benefits for dentists - and their staff
Navigating the ever-changing dental benefit marketplace can be a full-time job. CDA member dentists may already know that dental benefit assistance is available to them through CDA Practice Support. However, dentists may find it hard to break away from dentistry to reach out for assistance. Conveniently, dental office staff are welcome to ask Practice Support questions on dentists’ behalf.
Three CDA members share their supply savings
What could your practice do with an extra $10,000 each year? For many dental practices, supplies now commonly equate to 6 7 percent of collections. An office with $800,000 in income that spends 6.5 percent on supplies ($52,000) could save $10,400 per year by cutting 20 percent of its supply costs. The online shopping site continues to trend at 20 percent average savings compared to MSRP.
Managing patients with HIV
There is still a great misunderstanding about the spread of one of the most feared diseases in U.S. history — HIV. Unlike the flu or common cold, there is little, if any, risk of spreading the HIV virus in the dental setting as long as appropriate precautions are taken. In California, patients with HIV are protected under the Unruh Civil Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of medical condition, race, religion, sexual orientation or disability, among other factors.
TDSC extends dental supply savings to associations in Western states
The Dentists Supply Company has announced plans to roll out access to its shopping site,, to tripartite members in nine Western states. The rollout is the first phase of TDSC’s nationwide expansion, which will allow members of organized dentistry to benefit from 20 percent average savings on a broad online catalog of supplies from authorized vendors, plus free shipping.
Savings keep stacking up for shoppers
Through The Dentists Supply Company, a CDA subsidiary, shoppers continue to see an average savings of more than 20 percent compared to manufacturers’ suggested retail prices. While that level of supply savings has attracted many CDA members to, it’s how the difference is stacking up over time that’s really impressive. Members have already saved more than $2 million dollars on dental supplies through the site, and they’re on track to save a half million more by the end of the year.
Transitioning to a paperless office – how to get started
Whether you recently purchased a practice with paper charts or have been maintaining your own paper chart system, you have probably considered going paperless. The average front-office team using paper charts spends nearly 25 percent of its time locating, filing and reviewing charts. By contrast, a paperless system increases office efficiency and provides cost savings. If you think you’re ready to go paperless, here’s how to get started.
Where does MSRP factor in your supply costs?
When considering a purchase, dentists rated “quality” as the most important attribute of dental suppliers. In fact, this attribute was rated the leading factor by 64 percent of dentists in 2017. By 2018, quality was still at 53 percent, but price had grown from 19 percent to 22 percent. The good news is that practices don’t have to sacrifice the supplies they love or the brands they trust to control costs.
New initiative aims to stop scams targeting small businesses
The Federal Trade Commission recently unveiled Operation Main Street: Stopping Small Business Scams, a “coordinated law enforcement and education effort” involving state and federal partners as well as the Better Business Bureau. As part of this effort, the FTC, jointly with state attorneys general and U.S. attorneys’ offices, announced 24 actions involving “defendants who allegedly perpetrated scams against small businesses” over the past year.
Five questions to ask about your supply spend
In most areas of practice, dentists want their offices to exceed expectations. The friendliest staff. The best treatment outcomes. The happiest patients. However, your practice should endeavor to conform to the norm in at least one area: overhead expense ratios. Managing variable expenses, like dental supplies, means that your practice can keep more of what it earns.
Reference checks: A small but important piece of the hiring process
Recent polls and research suggest that 50-80 percent of resumes submitted by job applicants contain false or inaccurate information about the applicants’ job history or qualifications. Employers who are not already conducting careful reference checks may be more inclined to do so when faced with such an alarming statistic. Checking references is a small step in the hiring process that can provide significant value to employers.
Peer-to-peer recommendations for supply savings
Have you heard the story about the woodcutter who was so busy chopping down trees that he didn’t take time to sharpen his ax? Perhaps you’ve even become a woodcutter in your own practice. It can be challenging to exit the whirlwind of activity to take the steps that make your practice more effective and efficient. The good news is that there are opportunities to sharpen your ax every day — especially when it comes to cost reduction and inventory control.
Easy steps to creating a more effective online presence for your practice
Sixty percent of consumers conduct online research before going to a business’ website to weigh a purchase decision. Even if you have a new top-of-the-line site, people may never make it there if they don’t like what they see on popular review sites. If you don’t have an online presence or are questioning how strong it is, there are many simple steps you can take to begin creating a more favorable digital reputation for your practice.
Proven methods for fine-tuning supply costs
With the optimal cost of dental drugs and supplies averaging 6 to 8 percent of collections, focused purchasing can have a significant impact on practice efficiency and net operating income. When seeking to control supply costs, there are four key areas of opportunity: managing inventory, improving purchasing habits, renegotiating pricing and adding suppliers.
Join the TDSC excitement at CDA Presents
CDA’s newest subsidiary, The Dentists Supply Company, is coming to CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco. At the Member Benefits Center inside the convention’s exhibit hall, attendees will be able to experience, a site designed to deliver members savings and free shipping on dental supplies. The TDSC team will also be on-site with exciting promotions and giveaways exclusive to the San Francisco convention.
Free lectures at The Spot cover regulatory compliance, employment law and more
This September at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco, The Spot Educational Theater will host free one-hour lectures nearly every hour on the hour beginning at 10 a.m. all three days of the convention. Among the scheduled lecturers are CDA Practice Support’s four analysts who provide expert guidance in the areas of dental benefits, employment practices, practice management and regulatory compliance.
Unbranded: The case for alternate dental supplies
In your life outside the practice, you’re constantly confronted with the choice between name brands and alternate brands. Whether you’d consider that “other” carton generic, private label, house brand or alternate, the difference may be more in your perception than in the product. How much does your perception of quality and value factor into your purchasing decisions? And what steps can you take to determine the best selections, both for your home and dental office?
Communicate clear processes for inventory management
When it comes to inventory management, in addition to assigning accountable individuals to specific roles, be sure that documented expectations are included in your onboarding and training processes. As you organize your inventory system, here are three efficiencies to consider.
Choose the right people for inventory management
Many practices rely on a single point person for inventory control, and the role tends to default to a dental assistant. However, inventory is not a task but rather a system — one that needs the right point person for some processes and the whole team for others. As with most processes, practice leadership must establish, document and assign specific roles and responsibilities. Here are four inventory management roles and guidance for filling them.
Same-name mix-ups: Verify patient information to reduce risk
The Dentists Insurance Company’s Risk Management Advice Line recently received a call from a practice that was dealing with a case of mistaken identity for same-name patients. The caller actually represented two practices: a pediatric dentistry office and an orthodontic office, which were managed separately but shared a common patient waiting area. Two patients named Haley were scheduled for treatment at the same time — one in each office.
An easy approach for comparing supply prices
Searching for better prices can seem like a daunting process, even with the convenience of 24/7 shopping sites in place of brick-and-mortar stores or paper catalogs. How can you efficiently evaluate your ordering and find ways to save? Ask an expert to do it for you. CDA’s newest subsidiary, TDSC, an online source for dental supplies, has a team that will research and compare prices for members through a no-cost, no-obligation service.
Key steps to follow when responding to patient refund requests
CDA Practice Support receives many member calls about refunding payments. Most often, these are refund requests to dental plans or patients due to quality of care and billing errors. Sometimes members ask about refund requests for treatment rendered to a recently deceased family member. The starting point for any refund request is having a comprehensive financial agreement and financial policy in place for your practice.
Experts help CDA members navigate the business side of dentistry
Four experienced CDA Practice Support analysts are available to assist members with matters related to dental benefit plans, employment law and human resources, regulatory compliance and practice management. These specialized experts provide one-on-one guidance by email and phone and speak on timely topics at CDA’s biannual education convention. Together they’ve developed a full library of online resources that they expand upon and update throughout the year.
TDSC earns widespread media coverage
TDSC, an e-commerce site that offers discounts on dental supplies for association members in California, is helping to shake up the $10 billion dental equipment market by offering dentists a higher level of control over their supplies. The site, which hit a $1 million milestone in shopper savings in May, is garnering media attention from national dental publications and regional business journals. Read what the media is saying about
Millennial dentists featured in CDA Journal
The June Journal of the California Dental Association paints a picture of millennial dentists — dubbed “dentennials” — through articles co-authored by the dentists themselves. Articles discuss their experiences in dentistry, the best methods for educating their generation, the four millennial personality types found in dental schools, the dental generation gap and dentennials who practice in small towns. dental supply case studies: Three CDA members' orders
Through, a website designed to deliver group purchasing discounts on dental supplies to CDA members, shoppers are seeing 20 percent average savings compared to manufacturers’ suggested retail prices.
Shoppers and savings are quickly adding up for
The shared strength of organized dentistry supports members in almost every aspect of their professional lives: a louder voice in government, exceptional insurance coverage due to a broad premium base and exciting conventions with hundreds of educational opportunities to serve thousands of attendees. Now, the newest benefit of membership is delivering direct benefits. The TDSC Marketplace, an online source for dental supplies, shares savings that leverage collective buying power.
Spring cleaning isn’t limited to the office: Update patient records to mitigate risks
Spring is a prime time to deep clean your practice and tie up any loose ends from the previous year. It’s also a great opportunity to review your patient records and ensure all files are accurate and current. Here are some things to consider when revisiting patient charts. If you find something is missing, review the chart with your patient at their next visit.
Dentistry and eHealth featured in May CDA Journal
The May Journal of the California Dental Association explores a variety of topics, including a strategy to make eHealth relevant to dentistry, an update on medication-related osteonecrosis of the jaw, the effects of mixed-dentition orthodontic treatment and a study of how dentists learn by combining evidence and experience.
TDSC Marketplace on target for $1 million in savings by CDA Presents
When CDA’s subsidiary The Dentists Service Company launched the TDSC Marketplace last year, it was with a bold mission: to deliver practice-changing savings on dental supplies to CDA members. Learn more about this new member benefit at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in Anaheim May 17–19. Stop by CDA’s Member Benefits Center in booth 1102 of the convention exhibit hall, where the Marketplace team will showcase the site and help attendees “test drive” features.
Strategic shopping for high-dollar supplies
When balancing your practice’s dental supply budget, it can seem like there’s never a good time to allocate dollars to upgrade, enhance or add to your equipment. Relatively small equipment can come with a significant price tag. So how do you discern when to purchase higher-dollar items and how to get the most value?
Silver diamine fluoride covered under Denti-Cal with CDA-sponsored bill
CDA is sponsoring new legislation that will allow dentists who provide care in the Medi-Cal dental program to be reimbursed when using silver diamine fluoride as a caries arresting agent. With the passage of Senate Bill 1148, SDF will be placed in dentists’ tool belts as an evidence-based option to manage dental caries when used as part of a comprehensive treatment plan, particularly beneficial with patients who present challenges to receiving traditional treatment.
Focus on finding savings for your most-used supplies
Also known as “the law of the vital few,” the Pareto principle is often expressed as 80 percent of effects coming from 20 percent of causes. You’ve likely observed this phenomenon in your own practice — whether it’s a large percentage of revenue coming from a relatively small number of procedures or a high percentage of new patients coming in from one of your many marketing efforts. However, one of the areas in which the Pareto principle is most evident is in your dental supply budget.
April Journal spotlights endodontics
The April issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association reports on current advances in endodontic treatment procedures. Articles discuss the management of bacterial contamination in the root canal system, improvements in the visualization of the tooth-bone complex through cone beam computed tomography and the replacement of necrotic pulpal tissue in developing immature teeth.
ADA advances national policy to reduce opioid dependency
The ADA on March 26 adopted a new policy to combat the opioid epidemic, calling it the potential first of its kind by a major health professional organization to support mandates on opioid prescription limits and continuing education. “I call upon dentists everywhere to double down on their efforts to prevent opioids from harming our patients and their families,” said ADA President Joseph P. Crowley, DDS, in a press release. The Interim Board Policy on Opioid Prescribing addresses continuing education, dosage and duration, and prescription and drug monitoring.
Improve purchasing decisions by evaluating invoices
Your purchasing decisions make a significant impact on both your bottom line and how your office team allocates its time. In fact, the details revealed in just a single order can help you understand true costs, control overhead and streamline operations. The TDSC Marketplace is a new source for dental supply savings for CDA members. Here, an actual order from a current Marketplace shopper is broken down to highlight strengths and opportunities for further efficiencies.
CDA's Sample Employee Manual updated with new and revised policies
Having an up-to-date, legally compliant manual can play a critical role in helping employers follow new employment laws and manage employees in the practice. CDA Practice Support is pleased to share that the Sample Employee Manual, a downloadable resource for members, has seen a transformation in 2018. Aside from a reorganization of the contents, the revised manual contains more than a dozen new and revised policies.
Dental plan correspondence — it’s not all junk mail
In today’s world, we are often bombarded with junk mail, making it easier to overlook an important notice from a benefit plan that could upset the way a dental practice does business. This is why it is essential for an office to establish a protocol for reviewing benefit plan mailers in a timely manner.
TDSC marks first-year milestone with $500K in member savings
One year after clicking the “place order” button to purchase dental supplies online through The Dentists Service Company’s Marketplace, James Stephens, DDS, added up his 12-month savings — $13,000 total. After a successful testing phase, the TDSC Marketplace was launched last June as a free benefit to all CDA members in response to members’ desire to have more control over their practices, including the ability to compete with large group practices that negotiate supplies at lower prices than solo practice owners.
Updated Legal Reference Guide for California Dentists features all-CDA content
In their day-to-day practice, dentists and their teams must know and comply with federal, state and local laws — from the layered requirements of federal and state employment laws to the dentistry-specific California Dental Practice Act to local laws that enforce building codes. A first resource for dentists to help them navigate these laws is the Legal Reference Guide for California Dentists, updated and published in January by the CDA Practice Support experts.
One-on-one support available for CDA members
It’s no secret that CDA and its family of companies are home to some of the brightest specialists supporting dentistry today. And their expertise is just a call or email away for CDA members. But where should members turn for what kind of support? Here’s your quick-start guide to accessing expert advice.
February Journal spotlights silver diamine fluoride
In the second of a two-issue series, the February issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association continues the exploration of silver diamine fluoride. Featured are articles on how a pediatric dentist incorporated silver diamine fluoride into his practice; the use of SDF to care for elderly and brain failure patients; and the chemical mechanisms of SDF when used as a caries arresting and preventing agent among other articles.
Leading the dental practice team through change
While you may not suffer from metathesiophobia, the persistent and unwarranted fear of change, you might still get palpitations when leaving your “comfort zone.” Change can sometimes create feelings of anxiety and insecurity in even the most seasoned dentists and harmonious practice teams. See how proven change management principles can be applied within a dental practice.
CDC app helps dental teams monitor infection prevention efforts
A free mobile app by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can assist dental facilities in monitoring their compliance with recommended infection control practices. The CDC DentalCheck app automates an infection prevention checklist and allows dental health care providers to “easily move throughout the practice as they evaluate their compliance with recommended infection prevention practices.”
How do TDSC Marketplace dental supply selection and savings stack up?
Through the TDSC Marketplace, a benefit of CDA membership, shoppers are seeing an average savings of more than 20 percent compared to manufacturers’ suggested retail prices. While the savings have attracted many CDA members, some still have questions about changing their supply sources. The TDSC Marketplace team took a thorough look at a practice based in Rocklin, Calif., to see how product selection and real-world savings stacked up.
Re-treating patients when an associate leaves
Hiring an associate brings the opportunity to lighten workloads and potentially drive in new business. But as with any relationship, both parties may eventually agree to part ways. In worst-case scenarios, the split may not be amicable and your patients and practice as a whole may suffer unwelcome consequences.
Dentist seeks guidance when patient's cognitive health becomes a factor
Throughout the business week, CDA Practice Support experts answer questions submitted by members via the “Ask an Expert” feature. Staff then answer and archive the question online for the benefit of other members. But occasionally, a question or the recurrence of questions along the same theme prompts the need for a deeper probe. In one such question, a dentist expressed concern about a patient’s cognitive health — and with whom she was allowed to discuss it.
TDSC offers dentists more control over their businesses
With a growing diversity in practice models, including an increase in dentists working as employees or contractors and a decrease in practice ownership, there is no denying that the business challenges for dentists across the nation continue to grow as well. Feeling the combined impacts of dental benefit pressures, growing market competition and the rapid expansion of large group practices, CDA members voiced a need for more control.
CDA Presents lectures will cover social media marketing strategies for every skill level
Significant changes have occurred over the last 10 years in advertising and internet marketing, which means dental practices must adjust their strategies to reach potential patients. This May at CDA Presents Anaheim, author and international speaker Rita Zamora will lead two lectures designed to help dentists or their staff market their practice effectively through social media — no matter their current knowledge or skill level.
Silver diamine fluoride featured in CDA Journal
In the first of a two-issue series, the January issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association explores silver diamine fluoride. Articles include a review of the history and use of silver diamine fluoride in dentistry, a discussion about the role silver diamine fluoride plays in the chronic disease management of caries in children and more.
Strategize your calendar for 2018
Whether you prefer a digital organizer or a fresh paper calendar, you’ll be more efficient in the new year by taking a few minutes now to plan to take advantage of all of your CDA membership benefits in the months to come. In addition to vacations and staff birthdays, mark the dates for association events, compliance deadlines and practice reminders. Discover even more membership value, protection and support all through the year.
Enjoy streamlined dental supplies shopping through the TDSC Marketplace
The Dentists Service Company’s newly developed online shopping site provides an easy-to-use shopping experience while leveraging the buying power of CDA’s 27,000 members to offer significant savings. In addition to free shipping and an average savings of 20 percent, Marketplace shoppers can enjoy a number of features, including subscription ordering and saved lists, that make purchasing efficient.
Updates to 2017-18 Required Poster Set
Regulatory changes have occurred since the printing of the 2017-18 CDA Required Poster Set. As of December 2017 the three changes are: an updated Wage Order 4-2001 to reflect increases in the state minimum wage; a “Transgender Rights in the Workplace” poster that must be posted beginning Jan. 1, 2018; and an updated “Safety and Health Protection on the Job” notice.
Current registrations and safety certificates required of X-ray machine owners, operators
With the recent increase in X-ray machine registration fees, CDA reminds members to ensure their registrations are up to date. CDA Regulatory Compliance Analyst Teresa Pichay cites recent calls from dentists who were surprised to receive past-due bills for registration fees dating as far back as eight years, and she cautions dentists that “not receiving a bill does not exempt a facility with X-ray equipment from paying the registration fees.”
Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, the hourly minimum wage for employers with 25 or fewer employees will increase to $10.50 per hour. For employers with 26 or more employees, the minimum wage will increase to $11 per hour. Employers with exempt employees should evaluate employee salaries, as exempt employees in California generally must earn a minimum monthly salary of no less than two times the state minimum wage for full-time employment.
Shop the TDSC Marketplace by Dec. 31 to win big
The Dentists Service Company offers member-exclusive group purchasing discounts on 25,000+ items through the TDSC Marketplace. And through an exciting limited-time promotion, every Marketplace shopper who places an order by Dec. 31 will be entered to win one of ten $100 Visa gift cards. The top 100 spenders will be entered to win the grand prize: a vacation to a dream destination (a $4,000 value).*
Top talent: How to attract it and retain it
Unemployment rates are historically low and candidates have more employment choices than ever. Even if your practice is fully staffed, it’s not uncommon for the best employees to be enticed to leave by competitors. In my work with TDSC member-clients, I strongly recommend building a talent pipeline to help win the quest for talent.
Check the dates on your required poster set
As a member benefit, CDA Practice Support offers an easy-to-display poster set that contains all the latest health, safety and employee rights information practice owners need to post to comply with state and federal agency regulations.
Membership renewal now open online
With a single annual renewal, you can continue to experience the benefits of the ADA, CDA and your local dental society. Your ongoing participation in organized dentistry allows you to leverage dedicated legislative advocacy, expertise navigating the business side of dentistry and innovative tools to save time and money in your practice.
Shop for dental supplies with confidence
When The Dentists Service Company launched its online shopping site for dental supplies to CDA members earlier this year, it was with a commitment to make purchasing easier and more affordable for practices of every size. The TDSC Marketplace was also designed to allow dentists and their office staff to procure supplies across categories with confidence in the source and quality of every item.
What should be done about patients who want to take their crowns elsewhere?
You take time to build relationships with your patients and plan long-term treatment success. But what happens when a patient has “a better idea” of what should happen midtreatment? Though many patients desire a sense of control in their dental care and want to exercise choice, the trouble happens when a patient attempts to dictate clinical decisions. TDIC has seen a recent trend in the number of patients who are requesting their restorations simply be handed over to them.
If I had a magic wand: Reflections on managing dental benefit issues
Greg Alterton is approaching his 16-year anniversary with CDA. He worked in the CDA Public Policy Division for 13 of those 16 years, where he was involved in developing dental benefits legislation sponsored by CDA. He has assisted individual members directly with their dental benefit issues while in Public Policy and during the past three years with CDA Practice Support. He retires from CDA at the end of 2017.
$295M settlement reached on behalf of Stericycle customers
A $295 million settlement has been reached on behalf of a nationwide class of Stericycle customers, following a class-action lawsuit accusing the company of engaging in a price-increasing scheme that automatically inflated customers’ bills up to 18 percent biannually, according to a news release from Hagens Berman, the Chicago-based law firm that represented the class.
Resources for dentists as opioid crisis declared public health emergency
With the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Oct. 26 declaring the opioid crisis a public health emergency, CDA reminds dentists, who prescribe approximately 11 percent of prescription opioids annually, of the resources available to them. CDA’s online opioid resource guide at is regularly updated with links to resources as they are published.
Member-exclusive savings add up to sizable dollars
CDA members already know firsthand that their membership benefits can support them in navigating the business side of dentistry. From Practice Support resources to insurance products designed only for dentists, a full suite of tools is available to help practices be more competitive and efficient. Members also have access to programs that leverage CDA’s size and strength to save them money on dental supplies, insurance and education.
Dental anesthesia safety: Say something if you see something
At the recent CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry convention in San Francisco, Steve Yun, MD, provided an enlightening and practical examination of dental anesthesia and patient safety in his course Myths and Errors in Dental Anesthesia: Avoiding Office Disasters. In this interview, Yun shares his top tips for enhancing patient safety during dental anesthesia.
Follow the law when paying overtime, travel, education and more
Jammed schedules, late patients, lunchtime meetings, excess overtime, early morning staff huddles, meal and rest break requirements: All can tempt practice owners to find myriad creative ways to manage employee costs. This article, part 2 of a two-part series, covers compensation for time worked; payment of overtime; meal and rest break requirements; and the requirements of paying for education and travel.
Practice management: Why is it so complicated?
When I started practicing dentistry in 1979, our office took out a small ad on the back of the Pennysaver. No special offer or promotion, just a few lines about how we provided great dental care. That bit of newsprint drove 65 new patients a month to our Orange, California, office. Of course, that tactic couldn’t yield the same results today. So, what’s changed?
Members save on dental supplies through TDSC Marketplace
The savings were so significant the first time Richard Barnes, DDS, and his staff compared dental supply prices on the TDSC Marketplace that they thought there had been a mistake. Barnes, a Visalia dentist with three offices, including a surgery center, compared Marketplace prices to what he regularly paid for supplies and saw a 25 percent savings. Barnes is among the growing number of CDA members purchasing dental supplies online through the TDSC Marketplace, a shopping site that offers discounts based on the buying power of the association’s large membership.
All employers required to e-file and e-pay with EDD in the new year
Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, employers of every size will be required to register with the Employment Development Department’s e-Services for Business and file all wage reports and employment tax returns and pay all contributions for unemployment insurance premiums electronically. The electronic filing requirements of Assembly Bill 1245 are intended to increase the accuracy and security of data and improve the processing speed of returns and payments.
Medical consultation versus clearance: A critical distinction for dentists
CDA Practice Support and The Dentists Insurance Company are receiving an increasing number of calls from members on the subject of obtaining medical clearance for patients who have certain chronic conditions such as diabetes or are undergoing certain therapies. TDIC warns dentists that the medical clearance process is misleading because it implies that the patient is “cleared” for treatment.
November Journal spotlights dental student research
The November 2017 Journal of the California Dental Association showcases the research projects of several California dental school students and their mentors.
Billing during practice transitions: Correcting the myths
Myth busting: It’s part of what we do. And circulating out there are a number of myths regarding how dental plans should be billed when a practice is in the midst of transferring ownership.
Safe and sober: Managing employees who are under the influence
Your practice needs the entire team to be sharp and focused for the schedule to run smoothly, so if you’ve ever had an employee show up in the morning unable to perform duties, you can expect to have both a hard conversation and a long day. The impact of an employee’s substance abuse on a practice extends beyond impaired performance and productivity.
Grow your patient base in a competitive market
The rise in the number of dental school graduates equates to more dentists in both group and solo practices in your local area. And that means more choices for consumers, who are becoming even more discerning and have the digital tools to do so. How, then, does a practice grow and retain its patient base when the competition is fierce?
Policy statement on opioid abuse adopted by dental board
In California alone, opioid-related deaths from 2002 to 2014 were up almost 30 percent, and dentists prescribe up to 12 percent of all opioid prescriptions in the U.S. In light of these alarming statistics, the Dental Board of California in August 2017 finalized and adopted a policy statement recognizing the epidemic of opioid abuse in the U.S.
Know your compliance dates
In one handy place, CDA members can find the details, deadlines and resources they need to ensure their practice complies with upcoming laws and regulations. Check out “Are You in Compliance?” on the CDA Practice Support homepage.
TDIC alerts CDA members about copyright infringement risk
The Dentists Insurance Company has received and is currently working to resolve several claims against its policyholders related to the unauthorized use of proprietary software code on the policyholders’ dental practice websites. The claimant asserts the policyholders have committed copyright infringement by using, without permission, copyright-protected software that provides real-time online chat capability.
Informed consent: More than just a form
A common allegation in many professional liability claims is the lack of informed consent. Patients argue that had they known about the possibility of complications, they would have made a different decision regarding their dental treatment. One of the best ways dentists can protect themselves in these cases is by ensuring patients are armed with the facts needed to make informed decisions.
Effective case presentation and acceptance in the dental practice
In today’s dental market, patients have more choices than ever before. High expectations and an influx of information means competition is fierce, leading to a marked shift in how practice owners attract and retain patients. Long gone are the days when patients chose their dentist based on static provider directories, word-of-mouth or the Yellow Pages. Today, consumers are highly connected and able to research online reviews, ratings and guides prior to making a dental or health care choice.
Intoxicated patients: To treat or not to treat?
Many patients suffer from dental anxiety and they all have their own ways of addressing their unease. Anxiety management techniques run the gamut, from conscious sedation to deep breathing to simply toughing it out. Sometimes patients use alcohol or drugs to relax. Whether they turn to the bottle to ease anxiety or simply enjoy a three-martini lunch, dentists are left with the uncomfortable dilemma of whether to provide treatment.
X-ray machine registration and other fees to increase Sept. 1
Radiologic Health Branch fees are due to increase 26.76 percent Sept. 1, 2017, under the Budget Act of 2016, Chapter 23, in accordance with California Health and Safety Code section 100425. Five fee types are increasing, including registration of reportable sources of radiation renewal and certification in radiologic technology or nuclear medicine technology application.
Free lectures cover HIPAA compliance, patient dismissal
Something is always happening at The Spot Educational Theater at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry. In addition to offering convention attendees a place to sit and rest their feet, charge their phones and catch up on activity at the Social Hub, The Spot hosts free one-hour lectures every hour on the hour beginning at 9 a.m., with the last lecture at 4 p.m. Thursday and Friday and at noon Saturday.
Learn how to prepare for and manage emergencies at CDA Presents
It demonstrates airway and breathing complications, comes with a host of cardiac and circulation features, offers IV and intraosseous access, can respond to medical interventions — from nasotracheal intubation to surgical cricothyrotomy — and it talks back and is completely wireless. It’s the SimMan — and this August at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco, the dentist and entire dental team will have an opportunity to train with the high-fidelity simulation mannequin.
Calling benefit plans for resolution or spinning your wheels?
There’s a reasonable assumption that calling a dental plan about a payment dispute will resolve the dispute. We’d all like to think this works more often than it actually does, but the reality is that informal calls to dental plans about payment or other issues the dental practice is having with a dental plan may not quickly lead to resolution.
First-time exhibitors, product launches at CDA Presents
More than 400 companies will showcase new technology and dental innovations in exhibit halls on the first and second levels of Moscone West for CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry Aug. 24-26 in San Francisco. Convention-only pricing is available. Highlighted here are just a handful of the new products, including two from first-time CDA Presents exhibitors, that attendees can expect to discover in San Francisco.
Maximize operational efficiency by managing overhead expenses
Managing overhead expenses might not be a skill dentists learn about in dental school, but it is a necessity for running a successful practice. Practice owners don’t always realize just how much their overhead costs add up and how high the real cost of doing business can be. A thorough evaluation of overhead efficiency can significantly reduce costs, increase revenue and streamline operations — in practices of every model and size.
Top five: Spotlight on CDA Practice Support resources
In addition to advice from experts on the business side of dentistry, CDA Practice Support provides a full online library of articles, guides, templates and tools. Check out five of the most popular resources this quarter and see how they can help make running your practice easier and more efficient.
How to stop payment demands for unordered products
A component dental society recently notified CDA that several of its members have reported receiving invoices for products that their dental practices did not order. The invoices were billed by a California dental supply company and could be a form of small-business scam. The Federal Trade Commission calls it the “supply swindle.” Practices can take steps to stop this unlawful practice.
Just say no: How to handle demanding patients
Patient satisfaction is the ultimate goal of any dentist and most will do whatever it takes to keep their patients happy, confident and pain-free. But what happens when a patient’s expectations are unrealistic? What if a patient is impossible to please? At what point should you say “enough is enough?”
CDA membership strengthens the profession
One of the greatest draws of professional associations is the chance to be a part of something bigger. When professionals come together, their voices truly become more powerful. Cultivating this collective power is one of CDA’s long-standing goals. In fact, the association has reached the 27,000-member mark and was recognized by the ADA in four key areas.
Discretionary dentistry: A growing trend for private practice
Now more than ever, patients are demanding discretionary dental treatments. Where just a few decades ago dentistry was seen primarily as an avenue to better oral health, it is now seen as a way to improve quality of life.
Dental teams can train to improve medical emergency response
It demonstrates airway and breathing complications, comes with a host of cardiac and circulation features, offers IV and intraosseous access, can respond to medical interventions — from nasotracheal intubation to surgical cricothyrotomy — and it talks back and is completely wireless. It’s the SimMan — and this August at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco, the dentist and entire dental team will have an opportunity to train with the high-fidelity simulation mannequin.
CDA Journal discusses trigeminal neuralgia
Arriving in time for holiday reading, the July Journal of the California Dental Association spotlights a variety of topics including hemifacial spasms, trigeminal neuropathic pain and malpractice claims and attendant laws. An ePub version is available for reading on mobile devices.
The Dentists Service Company launched to support members
CDA’s newest subsidiary, The Dentists Service Company, officially launched its services to CDA members this month. TDSC was established to support dentists with the business side of dentistry, specializing in practice management advising and group purchasing services. “We are thrilled that TDSC services are now available to our members,” said CDA President Clelan Ehrler, DDS, MS.
Practices may be required to change restroom signage
Effective March 1, 2017, all single-occupancy restrooms in any business establishment, place of public accommodation or government agency must be identified as "all gender" and be universally accessible. The Equal Restroom Access Act applies to toilet facilities with no more than one water closet and one urinal and with a locking mechanism controlled by the user. Employers and practice owners should change signage used for single-user restrooms to comply with the law.
New health care reimbursement option for small employers
Offering health care reimbursement benefits for employees used to be commonplace; however, with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, these arrangements are no longer lawful. Employers who fail to meet the insurance reform requirements and continue this practice could face penalties of up to $100 per day for each affected individual. Now, this is changing with the new Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement.
Otolaryngologist to join cadaver workshop at CDA Presents
A popular workshop at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry that uses cone beam computed tomography to preview and identify head and neck anatomy prior to and during dissection will return to the San Francisco convention this fall — with an added element. Joining Homayon Asadi, DDS, and David Hatcher, DDS, as a lecturer will be Nancy Appelblatt, MD, for a new focus on temporomandibular joint dysfunction and airway-related anatomy and disorders.
Keeping politics out of the dental office
The Dentists Insurance Company reports an increase in calls to the Risk Management Advice Line regarding heated political debates erupting in the office among both staff and patients. Today’s political climate is more tumultuous than ever, reaching a level of polarization that often spills into daily interactions. Individuals on all sides are emboldened to share their viewpoints. But like the holiday dinner table, a dental office is no place for political or religious discussions.
CDA: Supporting dentists from the start
The transition from dental student to practicing dentist can be one of the most stressful periods in an aspiring dentist’s life. Finishing classes, preparing for exams and applying for jobs can unnerve even the most well-prepared graduate. Luckily, CDA is here to help dentists at all stages of their careers with the business side of their profession.
Risk Management analysts share top three concerns
Practice owners who have questions about dismissing a patient, giving a refund or terminating an employee are not alone. The Dentists Insurance Company reports these are the top three risk management issues facing dentists today. In fact, these issues make up the majority of calls received through the Risk Management Advice Line. Following are real-life calls and recommendations offered by TDIC RM analysts.
Well-stocked emergency medical kits can help mitigate risk
Emergency preparedness can sometimes mean the difference between life and death. Well-trained staff and clear emergency protocols are essential, as are regularly performed drills to ensure expediency should an emergency occur. But one of the simplest ways to prevent an emergency from becoming a tragedy is a well-stocked and up-to-date emergency kit.
A to Z: CDA Practice Support resources are easy to find
Members can rely on CDA Practice Support for assistance in navigating the business side of dentistry with ease. Toward this goal, Practice Support experts in the areas of dental benefits, regulatory compliance, practice management, human resources and employment law work throughout the year to draft, update and publish resources that currently number over 400. Locating these resources on is easy.
Take steps to protect earnings in May
A survey by the organization indicates that individuals have a “three in 10 chance of suffering a disabling illness or injury that would keep them out of work for three months or more during their career.” With this in mind, during Disability Insurance Awareness Month in May, The Dentists Insurance Company (TDIC) encourages dental professionals to take steps to protect their earnings and their practices should unforeseen events occur.
Using report data to improve the dental practice
Dental practice owners and office managers can feel overwhelmed by the number, purpose and complexity of reports that their practice management software generates. CDA Practice Support is responding to calls from members by offering a free one-hour lecture at CDA Presents The Art of Science and Dentistry in Anaheim to help practice owners and office managers review eight key reports to evaluate successes and identify inefficiencies within the practice.
CDA Journal spotlights antibiotic resistance problems
The May Journal of the California Dental Association focuses on a variety of topics including a review of literature on the complication of IC therapy, dentistry’s role in managing the antibiotic resistance problem through the appropriate use of antibiotics and an evaluation of information available on the management of traumatically intruded permanent teeth.
Pound foolish: Cost as a factor in treatment decisions
All too often, patients fail to follow treatment recommendations due to expense, putting their oral health at risk. In addition, dentists sometimes make their treatment recommendations based on what a patient’s insurance plan will cover. The Dentists Insurance Company reports calls to the Risk Management Advice Line from dentists whose patients have refused care based on the cost. While budgetary limitations are certainly a reality of life, dentists are advised to proceed with caution when allowing patients to dictate care.
Innovative products to launch at CDA Presents
Dental products and services from nearly 600 companies will fill 130,000 square feet of exhibit hall space at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry this May at the Anaheim Convention Center. And many exhibiting companies will launch new products at the meeting. Dentists and their team members will want to explore the exhibit hall to take a first look at the latest technological innovations. Read here about a few of them.
Protected health information at risk, FBI warns
The FBI in a private industry notification warned health care providers that cybercriminals are actively targeting File Transfer Protocol (FTP) servers "operating in ‘anonymous’ mode and associated with medical and dental facilities to access protected health information (PHI) and personally identifiable information in order to intimidate, harass and blackmail business owners."
Creating office harmony to improve the patient experience
A strong relationship between the front and back office is a great value to every practice, yet it is often difficult to cultivate. How staff interacts with the patients is just as important as how staff interacts with each other. Learn how to bridge the gap between the front and back office at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in Anaheim. “The Winning Team — Front and Back Office” takes place Saturday, May 6, at The Spot on the exhibit hall floor.
CDA updates guide to the California Dental Practice Act
“Your Guide to California Dental Practice Act Compliance” was updated in January 2017 to reflect new laws concerning adverse event reporting, scope of practice, required language in the anesthesia informed consent form, online advertising through Groupon, notice of licensure, prescriber dispensing of controlled substances and several other areas of practice.
CDA offers new CURES and opioid resource guide
CDA has created a new online resource guide to help dentists meet requirements and follow best practices when prescribing opioids for the treatment of patients' dental pain. This resource is CDA's latest in ongoing efforts to address and combat California's opioid epidemic and ensure members have the most up-to-date information to maintain compliance in the dental practice.
Thorough treatment plans build patient trust
Imagine taking your car to the shop for a minor repair — say, to replace the spark plugs or patch a tire. Now, imagine picking your car up at the end of the day to discover that your engine has been completely rebuilt — and you’re responsible for the bill. This scenario would be unlikely to occur in the auto repair industry, but it happens all too often in the dental industry, leaving broken trust, unhappy patients and disputed bills in its wake.
Online-based practices are the way of the near future
Technology is advancing quickly here in the 21st century. As a result, dentists should take steps to upgrade the technological capabilities of their practices with internet access, up-to-date software and computers or they could be left behind. Without an ability to get online, or without the most up-to-date software, some regulatory resources are impossible or difficult to use.
Updated anesthesia consent form required
Under AB 2235, the pediatric anesthesia bill signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown last September, dentists are required to obtain written informed consent from the parent or legal guardian of a minor patient prior to administration of general anesthesia or conscious sedation. As part of this requirement, the written informed consent form must contain new, specific language.
App helps dental teams monitor infection prevention efforts
A new mobile app released in mid-January by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can assist dental facilities in monitoring their compliance with recommended infection control practices. The CDC DentalCheck app can be used to ensure adequate supplies and appropriate infection prevention policies are in place, such as proper training and education of staff.
CURES 1.0 not available after March 5
CURES 1.0 will be discontinued on Sunday, March 5, 2017. The departments of Consumer Affairs and Justice have announced that beginning March 6 prescribing health care practitioners will only be able to access CURES 2.0. To securely access CURES 2.0, dentists will need to update their web browsers as specified.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
Here are the top-five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance. Featured are the “Exempt Employee Sample Offer Letter,” “Effective External Marketing Strategies Checklist” and more.
Final notice: Sending an account to collections
Collections is one of the most crucial and challenging aspects of practice management. Using a collections protocol is a basic first step in addressing unpaid balances, but if phone calls and letters go unanswered, a dentist is faced with the dilemma of whether to turn the account over to a collection agency. TDIC advises dentists to carefully consider the pros and cons of such an action.
Google update pulls reviews from across web
Today the reach of consumers’ opinions can extend past family and friends to the web, where review sites allow a reach that is likely immeasurable. Dentists should take note of a Google update launched in mid-September that pulls business reviews from other websites and displays those reviews in the “knowledge panel” — a box of information that appears on the right side of Google search results.
Small businesses increasingly targeted by cybercriminals
The National Cyber Security Alliance cites a surprising statistic: 60 percent of small businesses will close within six months of a cyberattack. And cybercriminals are more frequently targeting small businesses and organizations, which were once considered a lesser target. Now, cybercriminals exploit small businesses to gain access to bigger businesses through the distribution chain or payment portals.
Accepting a dismissed patient back into the practice
Whether an old flame or a disloyal friend, choosing to accept someone back into one’s life can be a difficult decision. But what about accepting dismissed patients back into the practice? Do they deserve a second chance? The answer is: It depends. According to The Dentists Insurance Company, in some cases, such as noncompliance, accepting a dismissed patient back to the practice can lay the groundwork for a liability claim. But in other cases, the answer isn’t so clear.
OCR's new FAQ addresses business associates' use of PHI
A new FAQ from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights clarifies that a business associate cannot prevent a HIPAA-covered entity’s access to protected health information maintained by the business associate (for or on behalf of the covered entity) unless provided for within a contract.
Taking inventory to safeguard the dental practice
Relying on memory alone to recount business assets is an exercise in futility. While most dentists have a general idea what they own and how much it’s worth, not all have a thorough, detailed inventory of their office contents. Unfortunately, failing to document all items of value can lead to a shortage of insurance coverage should a loss occur.
Dentists should respond to dental plan verifications
Under SB 137, which went into effect July 1, dentists contracted with dental plans must respond to a plan’s request for accurate directory information within 30 days or face payment delays, reimbursement reductions or termination of their participating provider agreement.
'Meaningful use' funds must be claimed by Dec. 31
Under the provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, participating Denti-Cal providers may receive up to $63,750 in incentive payments for implementing an electronic health record system and eventually achieving “meaningful use.” The program will close to new registrants on Dec. 31, and any dentist who has not started in the incentive program will lose the opportunity to claim those dollars.
Online cultural competency training for dentists
The ADA Council on Access, Prevention, and Interprofessional Relations recommends a free online educational program to equip oral health care professionals with the knowledge, skills and awareness to best deliver oral health services to all patients, regardless of cultural or linguistic background.
Missed opportunities too common in dental offices
When it comes to missed opportunities in small businesses, one cannot blame small business owners if, as the saying goes, “they don’t know what they don’t know.” When the small business owner is a dentist, a couple of common areas of missed opportunity include new patient experience and retention of active patients.
Advertising on Groupon allowed under new law
Legislation signed by Gov. Brown resolves a longstanding conflict concerning whether health care providers’ use of online marketing companies to advertise health care services constitutes fee splitting or payment for referrals, both of which are prohibited under state law.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
Here are the top-five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Dental board email address requirement in effect
Under a new law, all applicants licensed by the Dental Board of California are required to submit their email address to the board effective July 1. The board plans to contact licensed dentists annually to confirm that their email addresses on file are correct.
Learn practice ownership strategies in seminar
Attend a seminar on Oct. 21 to tap into a 360° approach to practice ownership. Free to CDA members, this comprehensive dental seminar will offer dentists strategies for starting, buying or selling a practice.
New oral health materials to share with parents
The Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign has partnered again with Scholastic to offer resources for parents to reinforce their children’s good teeth-brushing habits. Dentists can visit or direct parents to Scholastic’s Healthy Teeth webpage for a list of recommended books about brushing along with downloadable bilingual materials.
How to contract with and bill for associates
As the dental marketplace continues to change, hiring associates and having a multidentist practice is increasingly more common. CDA Practice Support frequently receives inquiries from members regarding how to correctly bill for associate dentists providing treatment in their practice.
Preliminary list of participating Covered California dental plans released
Covered California, California's health insurance marketplace for the federal Affordable Care Act, has released some of the participating dental plans for the 2017 benefit year. Covered California's open enrollment period for 2017 coverage begins on Nov. 1 and ends Jan. 31, 2017.
'Are You in Compliance?' Use new resource to track key dates
Now, in one handy place, CDA members can find the details, deadlines and resources they need to ensure their dental practice is in compliance with upcoming laws and regulations. On the main Practice Support webpage, the new “Are You in Compliance” section lists laws and regulations that dental practices will need to comply with.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance: housekeeping schedule; reclassification of exempt employees; sample patient appreciation letters; dealing with refund demands; and Cal/OSHA training requirements.
Prescription drug abuse lecture at CDA Presents
A lecture will be held at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco to help dentists navigate the professional responsibilities and regulatory requirements of pain management and opioid diversion.
Understanding utilization review and audits by benefit plans
As part of a contractual commitment the dental benefit plans have with their consumers (employer groups and their employees), the plans are required to have a claims utilization review and audit process.
Provider directory compliance letters in the mail
Delta Dental has initiated the first of a three-phase mailing to participating dentists as part of the provider directory verification process required by California Senate Bill 137.
Setting strong payment and collections policies
The goal for most practice owners is to send out as few billing statements as possible. This goal correlates with setting strong payment and collections policies and making sure staff is adhering to those rules, according to CDA Practice Advisor Sarah Gargani.
Developing a budget for a dental practice
The first step to better efficiency in a dental practice is staying on a budget. Dentists, as small-business owners, need to make sure their practices are successful and, as health care providers, need to be able to provide care to their patient base.
New products to be showcased at CDA Presents
Dentists who are looking for the latest technology, products and services in dentistry will find it all on the exhibit hall floor at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
Below are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
How practices can make a good first impression
When dentists are considering the new patient experience for their practice, they should think of the saying, “You only have one opportunity to make a best first impression.”
Dental student research featured in CDA Journal
The August Journal of the California Dental Association recognizes the work of young dental researchers and their mentors. This issue features a study that aimed to evaluate the antifungal activity of several alkaloids against Candida albicans in vitro and to determine the cytotoxicity on oral fibroblast cells.
CURES: mandatory check proposed
A check of the state’s prescription drug monitoring program may become mandatory under a proposed bill requiring prescribers, including dentists with U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration registrations, to check the Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System when writing a prescription for Schedule II-IV medications.
How to run effective office meetings
Dental practices interested in boosting team building and communication should attend a couple of key lectures at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco Sept. 8-10.
How to handle staff drama
Drama in the workplace creates an energy-draining work environment that no one enjoys. In the dental office, gossip can run at high levels if the owner dentist has not set standards and policies that prohibit this type of behavior.
Preparing for patient appointments days in advance
Preparing several days in advance of a patient’s appointment allows the dental team time to focus on the patient and the needs of the practice when it comes to that patient.
CDA Journal discusses oral microbiome
The July Journal of the California Dental Association features articles that examine the various aspects of the human oral microbiome.
Provider directory law in effect Friday
Effective July 1, a new law requires dental plans to comply with uniform standards and provide timely updates — including changes in practice address, license number, etc. — to their provider directories. The intent of the new law, SB 137, is to provide patients with more accurate and complete information regarding providers participating in the plan’s provider network.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources

CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Check out the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.

Know your numbers to ensure provider directory compliance
SB 137 requires dental plans to comply with uniform standards and provide timely updates for their provider directories and there are two numbers you need to know to ensure compliance with the new law that goes into effect July 1 — 30 and five. The goal of this legislation and resulting regulations is to provide patients with more accurate information to identify which dentists are participating with their dental plan.
CURES webinar recording now available
CDA recently hosted a webinar, presented by the Department of Justice, to assist member dentists with the Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System (CURES 2.0) registration process and any questions they may have regarding the new system.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
Below are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
CURES webinar offers important registration tips
CDA is hosting a webinar, presented by the Department of Justice, on May 25 to assist member dentists with the Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System (CURES 2.0) registration process and any questions they may have regarding the new system.
Oral anesthesia drug recalled
A single lot of Sensorcaine, which is often used in the injection for local or regional anesthesia in oral surgery, has been recalled. The recall was announced by Fresenius Kabi USA after an inspection of reserve samples revealed a particulate could block administration of the drug to the patient. This could cause a delay in therapy, result in local inflammation and mechanical disruption of tissue or immune response to the particulate.
Community involvement rewarding, builds loyalty
With summer approaching, parents will be looking for family activities to keep children busy. This is a perfect time for dentists to host a patient appreciation event or participate in some local family-friendly events. Participating in an event can be an educational experience for those who attend. It provides an opportunity for dentists to connect with their community and let potential patients know about their practice.
Steps for adopting alternative workweek
Managing the ins and outs of running a business and keeping track of changing state laws can be a challenge for many small-business owners, including dentists. CDA Practice Support offers clarity to its member dentists by providing resources and addressing issues, like overtime pay and implementing an alternative workweek for employees, which can be difficult to navigate.
New law requires accurate dental plan provider directories
A law created by Senate Bill 137 goes into effect on July 1 and requires all health plans to maintain accurate provider directories. This law requires dentists contracted with dental plans to respond to a plan’s request for accurate directory information within 30 days or face payment delays, reimbursement reductions or, ultimately, termination of their participating provider agreement.
CDA Journal features bioceramic materials in vital pulp therapy
The May issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association addresses a number of general topics including the use of bioceramic materials in vital pulp therapy, which is devised to preserve and maintain vitality of pulpally involved teeth challenged by a variety of intraoral conditions.
Best hiring practices: why job descriptions matter
Between the recruiting strategy, interviewing and training, there is a lot that goes into hiring a new employee in a dental practice. However, a key piece of the process happens before any of that. Developing a good job description happens even before a position is open. Every current employee should have an updated, accurate job description for their duties in the practice.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Check out the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
FDA calls for powdered exam gloves ban
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is proposing to ban the use of most powdered gloves, including powdered surgeon’s gloves, powdered patient examination gloves and absorbable powder for lubricating a surgeon’s glove.
Dentists must give timely practice updates
Beginning July 1, a new law will take effect requiring dental plans to comply with uniform standards and provide timely updates (practice address, license number, etc.) to their provider directories. The intent of the new law, SB 137, is to provide patients with more accurate and complete information as to which providers are participating in the plan's provider network.
Performance measurement in practices featured in CDA Journal
The April issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association features articles on performance measurement, quality measurement and quality improvement tools and mechanisms that can assist health professionals in their ongoing commitment to improve patient care, enhance professionalism and demonstrate accountability.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Below are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Deadline for Medicare registration extended
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has extended the deadline for dentists to either enroll as a Medicare Part D "ordering/referring provider" or opt out of the Medicare program entirely. The previous deadline was June 1, but it has now been extended to Feb. 1, 2017.
How to build an associate agreement
For a new dentist, the associateship is an excellent opportunity to experience patient relationships, treatment planning, case presentation, accurate record keeping, and interaction with a team without practice ownership. A written associate agreement creates a "win-win" opportunity for both the potential associate and the practice owner.
CDA Practice Support top trending resources
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Dentists warned of waste management misinformation
CDA has learned from members and a state agency that  dentists have been contacted by a national waste management service company  that is providing misinformation about regulatory requirements. The calls claim that dentists must register with the  California Department of Public Health as a "hazardous waste generator," or  that dental practices must comply with "new" regulations specifically for  pharmaceutical waste.
Handle patient record requests the right way
When a patient requests copies of his or her dental records, there are steps every dental practice should take to ensure that the request is handled properly, even when someone other than the patient requests the records. CDA Practice Support’s resource Access to Patient Records FAQ contains important information for practices to know about patient record requests and adhering to privacy regulations as outlined in HIPAA.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices.
Setting dental practice New Year's resolutions
With each New Year comes an opportunity to make changes personally and professionally. For dentists, they may want to make some alterations to the way their practice operates to improve the experience for both their staff and patients. CDA Practice Support has offered some goals dentists could adopt as their New Year's resolutions for their practices.
Top 10 CDA Practice Support resources in 2015
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top 10 CDA Practice Support resources of 2015 in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Be cautious of offering incentives for Facebook 'likes'
Based on guidelines from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), a “like” on Facebook could be considered an endorsement. CDA recommends dentists avoid incentivizing positive endorsements so as not to be in violation of FTC regulations.
Opioid regulations, scrutiny featured in CDA Journal
In collaboration with pharmacy colleagues, authors of the November issue of the Journal of the California Dental Association present the most current information on pain management in dentistry. This issue includes timely information relative to opioid medication regulations and abuse.
Top CDA Practice Support resources in October
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in October in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Help with human resources is one call away
In April, Trevor Thorn, DDS, purchased his first solo practice in Sonora and within the first eight months had four of his eight employees go out on disability or maternity leave. Having little experience in handling the business side of a practice when dealing with human resources issues, Thorn picked up the phone and called CDA Practice Support to get up to speed on how to properly accommodate employees who are on disability. There are countless stories just like this of CDA members.
New patient form bundle now available
Proper patient communication is key for a dental practice, and that begins when the patient first becomes a patient. Communicating all of the practice’s policies and expectations is vital and that is why CDA has created a member-only New Patient Forms bundle. The bundle is a comprehensive resource pertaining to the gathering of information from the new patient. Dentists can implement the seven forms included in the bundle collectively or utilize them in an “a la carte” fashion if the practice has some, but not all, of the forms already in place.
Red-flag behaviors for identifying embezzlement
Embezzlement is typically defined as the theft of money or property by a person trusted with those assets. It usually occurs in employment settings, and small businesses suffer more losses from fraud than larger organizations. Dentists may inadvertently put their practices at risk for fraud by trusting a single employee with sole financial responsibility or by not reviewing accounts payable and receivable. However, this vulnerability can be reduced through awareness of “red flag” behaviors and a few key accounting protections.
How to have better collections in the dental practice
The goal for most practice owners is to send out as few billing statements as possible. This goal correlates with setting strong payment policies and adhering to those rules. However, when a patient is unable to pay at the time of service, despite the practice’s efforts to communicate the payment policies, the practice should be prepared with an alternative method. But before it gets to this point, there are steps dental practices can take to improve their collections process.
Steps to take for a more efficient back office
Many offices ask the age-old question, “How did we miscalculate our budget at year’s end?” Basically, “Where did the money go?” Proper organization and tracking back office expenses can help answer these questions. CDA Practice Support has put together five suggestions to help dentists systemize their practice and prevent confusion.
Last chances to attend TDIC RM seminars
There are three remaining opportunities for dentists to attend the fall 2015 lineup of TDIC's Risk Management seminar, Beyond the Science: Patient Emotions in Dentistry. TDIC is offering the seminar to help dentists correctly identify and handle patients who exhibit dental fear. Beyond the Science: Patient Emotions in Dentistry presents real case studies to dentists and staff members to help them recognize when, and how, to dismiss a patient without placing them at risk; establish trust in the doctor-patient relationship to encourage treatment compliance; create office protocols to instill confidence in the dentist and staff.
Top trending CDA Practice Support resources
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
5 social media tips for dental practices
Brad Newman, a leader in marketing and business development for dental offices, spoke to CDA Update staff during CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in San Francisco about how dentists can best market themselves online using a variety of social media sites. Newman discussed how to maintain a social media conversation that is "fresh, likeable and targeted for the right audience" and shared five social media tips for dental practices.
Panoramic X-ray machine recall
Panoramic Corporation has issued a voluntary recall of certain PC-1000 panoramic X-ray machines due to a potential problem with its lift motor, "which can result in severe injury to a patient or staff member." Panoramic Corporation sent certified letters to owners who are on record as having purchased one of the machines.
FCC: Dentists must get consent to make billing calls
Dental practices now must obtain authorization from a patient to call him or her on his or her cellphone to discuss account and insurance information, according to a recent ruling. A July 10 order by the Federal Communications Commission, interpreting a rule it promulgated in 2013, is cause for CDA to advise dental practices to ensure their policies and procedures for communications using patients’ cellphone numbers is in compliance with the law.
Top 5 CDA Practice Support resources in August
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, and it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Dentist helps catch thief who stole from his practice
Dentists consider the use of video surveillance cameras in their practices for any number of reasons. For William Gilbert, DDS, his cameras helped catch a thief that stole from his employees right out of the staff lounge.
Top 5 CDA Practice Support Resources in July
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, as it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources this month in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Good staff communication with new patients is vital
When new patients call a practice, it is typically with the hope of identifying their new dentist. They want someone who is confident and competent guiding them through their first appointment, explaining benefits and framing their next appointment effectively. Most likely, they are still looking for a dentist because they have not found an office that has been able to accomplish this. When it comes to communication, dentists and their staff need to be ready to confidently anticipate and manage the patient’s expectations.
The top reasons for claim denials
Medical/dental necessity will always be the rationale for most dental care, but medical/dental necessity may not be the basis of how plans pay. Dentists often wonder what the top reasons are for claims being denied. Here are some simple reasons why.
CDA is making dentists aware of an issue that is occurring with license renewal notices being sent in the mail. A member recently notified CDA that she received her renewal notice in an envelope that had a return address for the “Bureau of Automotive Repair,” and nearly disposed of the unopened envelope. Subsequently, CDA confirmed that some notices might have been sent out by accident with the wrong return address.
IRS to combat tax fraud cases affecting dentists
Over the last year, CDA has heard from its members about a scam involving other individuals filing tax returns under members’ names. Other health professionals have reported being targeted as well. The Internal Revenue Service is in the process of taking steps to combat this type of activity.
Tips on dealing with emergency appointments
In today’s market, patients have become extremely busy, and “emergency appointments” have become more common. Therefore, every dental office should design and implement their own “emergency protocol” and customize it to accommodate the changing patient landscape.
CDA is constantly looking for new ways to support members in their practices and has created a new subsidiary called The Dentists Service Company (TDSC), which has been approved by the CDA House of Delegates.
Top 5 CDA Practice Support Resources in June
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, as it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources this month in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Register for Dental Benefits Workshop in Irvine
Navigating the dynamic world of dental benefits is key to managing a smart practice. The Dental Benefits Workshop provides participants the opportunity to earn 12 C.E. credits during a two-day, in-person seminar. They will learn how to analyze and evaluate existing dental plan performance in their offices while getting hands-on experience from industry experts on how to navigate the world of dental benefits.
Member benefit supports practices' business side
Mireya Ortega, DDS, thought she had taken all of the necessary steps in the insurance approval and billing process for her patient. But despite doing everything according to the insurance policy standard she was sent a letter in the mail informing her she needed to return all of the money she had received for the treatment because the patient in fact did not have coverage. That is when she called CDA Practice Support.
How to handle disciplining dental staff
Employee discipline is one of the hardest, but necessary, components of practice ownership and employing staff. It's human nature to avoid confrontation. As a leader, it's important to set the ground rules from the first day of employment. Creating an atmosphere of collaboration, mutual respect and trust early on can reap long-term rewards for the employee, the dentist as the employer and ultimately the practice.
Learning to better understand patient emotions
Registration for the new fall 2015 lineup of TDIC’s Risk Management seminar, Beyond the Science: Patient Emotions in Dentistry, is now open. Beyond the Science: Patient Emotions in Dentistry presents real case studies to dentists and staff members to help them recognize when, and how, to dismiss a patient without placing them at risk; establish trust in the doctor-patient relationship to encourage treatment compliance; create office protocols to instill confidence in the dentist and staff.
Top 5 CDA Practice Support Resources in May
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease, as it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources this month in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Dentists get dental benefits lesson at CDA workshop
Attendees of CDA’s recent Dental Benefits Workshop at the CDA headquarters in Sacramento had the opportunity to earn C.E. credits while learning how to analyze and evaluate existing dental plan contract performance in their practices.  The more than 70 people, including dentists and staff from 40 practices, who attended the April 16-17 event earned up to 12 hours of C.E. and improved their skills in analyzing and evaluating the dental benefit marketplace.
Video: Tips on how to improve your dental photography
Richard Young, DDS, is an expert in dental photography. He co-directs Loma Linda University School of Dentistry's D3 esthetics program. Young also practices full time, focusing on esthetic dentistry. In this video, he provides some tips on how dentists and the dental staff can improve their dental photography.
Pharmacies rejecting dentist prescription forms
CDA reminds dentists who write controlled substance prescriptions that they must ensure their tamper-resistant forms are up-to-date. CDA has learned prescriptions are being rejected by pharmacies because the forms do not include all of the required elements. One of those required elements is that tamper-resistant forms used for controlled substance prescriptions must have the prescriber’s address preprinted on them.
Handling employee pregnancy and baby bonding leaves
Many dental practices, because of their small size, may not be required to provide benefits to employees under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or the California Family Rights Act. However, there may be other laws that do apply to employee leave. We have listed the four types of leaves for baby bonding/pregnancy that dentists and their staff should be aware of as well as a description of who is eligible and the amount of leave available under each type.
CDA offers patient health history form in Spanish
Each dental office should have an implementation strategy that includes a vision of how they will offer their services to diverse populations. In California, many patients enter a dental practice with Spanish being their only language, and the dentist and staff should have resources available to effectively communicate with those patients. CDA now has available a patient health history form that has been translated in Spanish for patients of a dental practice. Dental practices can print out the form and use it in their offices.
Top 5 trending CDA Practice Support resources
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease as it is chock-full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. Here are the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources this month in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Improving root canal success rates
In the fourth part of a CDA Presents Speaker Spotlight series highlighting the various topics that will be covered at CDA Presents in Anaheim, CDA Update staff spoke with Alex Fleury DDS, MS, the director of educational resources for Real World Endodontics. Fleury will be lecturing in Anaheim about "new horizons in endodontics."
Top 5 trending CDA Practice Support resources
CDA Practice Support is designed to help dentists navigate the business side of dentistry with ease as it is chock full of valuable resources to help them run their practices. We've compiled the top five trending CDA Practice Support resources this month in the categories of practice management, employment practices, dental benefit plans and regulatory compliance.
Notify dental staff of sick leave law changes
CDA has included information in its new 2015 Sample Employee Manual that dentists can use to notify their employees about the changes to the paid sick leave law in California. The new law, which takes effect on July 1, requires nearly every employer in California to allow all of its employees at least three paid sick days each year.
Communicating with patients of different ethnicities
A dental practice welcomes many people through its doors with different backgrounds and ethnicities. It is important for the dentist and staff to understand different communication methods. Each dental office should have an implementation strategy that has a vision of how they will offer their services to a diverse population.
Study: Patients prefer digital appointment reminders
In today’s technology world, automated systems play a key part in a dental practice’s patient recall efforts. A recent study that looked at patient scheduling preference trends found that appointment reminders via text message and email are more coveted by patients than direct mail and postcards. Specifically, 30 percent said they prefer text message, 28 percent prefer email, 25 percent prefer phone call and 17 percent prefer direct mail.
Learning roles of each dental team member
New to CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in Anaheim is a C.E. lecture series that provides the entire dental team an opportunity to learn about topics that relate specifically to their role within the practice. The “360 Experience” is a full-day C.E. program hosted by four industry-leading, nationally recognized speakers on Friday, May 1.
FTC drops investigation of Yelp's business practices
Further solidifying Yelp’s ability to continue to conduct its current method of review filtering, a subject that has long been a concern of dentists, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has dropped a review of its practices brought by complaints from small-business owners. This is the second time such an investigation of Yelp has been dropped by the FTC.
Buying or starting a practice - what you need to know
Dentists who are buying/building a practice, or simply interested in learning how to maximize their practice’s value, can attend CDA Practice Support’s “Buying or Starting a Practice – What You Need to Know” seminars. The seminars will feature a unique panel of experts representing various fields within the dental arena to provide dentists with the knowledge they need to take the next steps in their dental careers.
ADA recommendations for prophylactic antibiotic use
The ADA Council on Scientific Affairs has found that for patients with prosthetic joint implants, the use of prophylactic antibiotics, or antibiotics administered to prevent the risk of infection, are not recommended prior to dental procedures to prevent prosthetic joint infection (PJI). An updated ADA clinical practice guideline published in the January issue of The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) confirms this position.
Learn what's truly important to your dental team
CDA Update staff spoke with Gary Zelesky, who has been presenting motivational messages to audiences for 30 years. For the last 15 years, he has been speaking to dentistry audiences around the world, from England to Australia. Zelesky is known for including energy and humor in his presentations and will be leading four lectures at CDA Presents. CDA Presents the Art and Science of Dentistry in Anaheim is expected to attract more than 25,000 attendees April 30-May 2, and one of the biggest draw