Practice Systems

Production goals, meeting agenda templates, practice statistics and audits, hygiene productivity, case presentation tracking, and financial management.

Four reasons to stock up on equipment sooner
11/05/2019
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.
Debt collection agencies: Your last resort for patients' past-due accounts
05/07/2019
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.
Statewide conference in May focuses on future of health care delivery in California
03/18/2019
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.
Influencing patient retention in the dental practice
02/12/2019
“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.
Improper billing during practice transitions is risky business
01/30/2019
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.
Supply savings at tdsc.com: Four practices' price comparisons
01/21/2019
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 tdsc.com. 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.
Transitioning to a paperless office – how to get started
10/16/2018
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.
Unbranded: The case for alternate dental supplies
08/01/2018
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
07/19/2018
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
07/05/2018
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.
TDIC alerts CDA members about copyright infringement risk
09/20/2017
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.
Maximize operational efficiency by managing overhead expenses
07/31/2017
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.
How to stop payment demands for unordered products
07/24/2017
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.
Well-stocked emergency medical kits can help mitigate risk
05/25/2017
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.
Using report data to improve the dental practice
05/01/2017
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.
Online-based practices are the way of the near future
02/24/2017
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.
Setting strong payment and collections policies
08/15/2016
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
08/11/2016
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.
Performance measurement in practices featured in CDA Journal
03/28/2016
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.
New patient form bundle now available
09/30/2015
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.
How to have better collections in the dental practice
09/18/2015
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
09/17/2015
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.
New study analyzes dental software trends
11/03/2014
Technology in dentistry, like in many other professions, continues to evolve. From new CAD/CAM systems, to intraoral imaging, to iPad integration — the world of dentistry constantly adds new options for practices. One key aspect of this technology shift is the prevalence of new dental software, and a recent study delved into the purchasing habits of dentists in that realm.
Using data to guide the direction of a dental practice
06/19/2014
A computer software report can tell dentists what is happening in their practices pretty easily and can help them find missed opportunities. Dentists can check the pulse of their practices by running a monthly report of key performance indicators (KPIs) through their dental software program that will help them manage the performance of the practice and assist the team to make the necessary adjustments proactively to hit their annual goals. With these reports, the dentists and/or office manager can look for trends and plan accordingly.
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