Any office manager will tell you that you are more likely to collect the full amount of a patient’s balance at the time of service than if you send bills later. But, not all patients can pay the full amount at the time of service, especially in today’s economy where patients are carefully watching their monthly expenses.
A solution that works for you and for your patients is to set up payment agreements with patients who can’t pay the full balance at the time of service. With payment agreements, you can collect a portion of the payment up front and work out a plan with the patient to receive the remaining balance in small, manageable payments over time.
Setting up payment agreements with your patients decreases the likelihood of having to send their accounts to collections for non-payment. It’s better to collect a small amount of a patient’s balance each month than to have to send the entire balance to collections.
To set up payment agreements in Dentrix:
1. In the Ledger, select the patient.
2. Click the Billing/Payment Agreement button.
3. Enter the date the agreement begins.
4. Click Terms and set up the terms of the agreement. You can set the terms manually or you can select a standard payment agreement types.
5. Select the payment interval.
6. Enter the total amount of the agreement in the Bal for PA field.
7. Enter the date the first payment is due.
8. Enter a payment amount if the patient wants to specify a specific amount to pay each month. Otherwise, enter the total number of payments to be made and the amount will be calculated automatically.
Creating payment agreements and collecting payments from patients is even easier if you’re using PowerPay. In PowerPay, you can set up recurring charges (called consents) so that a patient’s credit card is automatically billed at the previously designated intervals. With PowerPay consents, you don’t have to worry about patients missing payments and falling behind on their balances.
For more information about payment agreements or PowerPay, visit the Dentrix Resource Center
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