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Three Types of Procedure Codes That May Be Underutilized in Your Practice

Don’t miss out on potential production by overlooking or simply not billing these procedure codes.

Is your office missing out on potential production? There are several procedures that are overlooked during a patient’s appointment that would not only benefit the patient but could also generate additional revenue for your practice. Here are some examples of the types of procedures to look for.

1. X-rays

Many offices don’t take X-rays on a regular basis. I recommend offices take Bitewing X-Rays once a year for most patients and twice a year for patients with high caries risk. A Full Mouth Series of X-Rays or Panorex should be taken every three years.

How does this benefit your patients?

Although patients may sometimes complain about having X-rays taken, early detection of caries can result in less invasive and less expensive treatment options. X-rays can also help your doctor to diagnose underlying issues that would not be visible to the naked eye, like a mass or an abscess.

How does this benefit your practice?

Having current diagnostic images protect your doctor and your practice. If, for example, your office doesn’t take regular X-rays and a patient does have an undiagnosed condition, you may be held responsible. Taking X-rays on a regular basis can increase your office production and collections by including additional procedures.

2. Diagnostic Procedures

When a patient comes to the office complaining of a toothache, most doctors will perform diagnostic tests such as a pulp vitality test, procedure code D0460, to diagnose the recommended treatment. Many offices don’t bill the procedure codes to the patient’s Ledger for these diagnostic tests.

How does this benefit your patients?

Diagnostic testing can help your doctor to determine the best course of treatment for the patient.

How does this benefit your practice?

Diagnostic procedures, such as pulp vitality tests (procedure code D0460), are not always billed out by the office, even if the doctor performs the test as a part of his diagnosis. Some offices don’t realize it’s a billable procedure code. By billing this code when appropriate, your office can increase revenue.

3. Fluoride Treatment

While most offices perform fluoride treatments on children and teenagers, adults are often overlooked. Just because dental insurance doesn’t typically cover fluoride for adults, doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be offered to those patients.

How does this benefit your patients?

There are studies that show the benefits of fluoride including reducing caries risk. Regular fluoride treatments as a preventative procedure can help your patients to avoid more extensive dental treatment.

How does this benefit your practice?

Additional procedures result in increased production and collections for your practice. You also have the benefit of happy patients with better oral health.

There are procedure codes that are sometimes overlooked or not billed to the patient’s Ledger. That not only means your office may be missing out on potential production, but patients may be missing out on procedures that could benefit them. Evaluate how often your office is taking X-rays, billing for diagnostic procedures such as pulp vitality tests, and offering fluoride treatments to patients—even if their insurance plan won’t cover it. You may find a way to generate more production for your practice and have healthier patients.




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