|A dental practice management
consulting company that focuses on revenue
and collection systems, front desk systems
and forms, dental insurance processing, medical/dental
cross-coding systems and employment-law compliance.
You are reading the first issue of The Art
of Practice Management’s newsletter,
"Dental Pearls". It is my mission
to create an easy source of dental practice
management information and tips that can be
shared with my readers. I enjoy staying in
touch with dental practices and I have found
that newsletters offer a unique opportunity
to do so. For many of us, it is not always
easy to find the time to read all of the dental
journals that pass through our offices.
My aim is to provide a short emailed newsletter
that can provide valued information in a quick
This newsletter is for you - to help make
your practice run more efficiently and to
make you happy that you are part of a practice
that grows beyond good and advances to great.
I look forward to hearing from you concerning
what you would like to see presented in this
newsletter. So look for "Dental Pearls"
in your email every quarter.
23, 2008 is the date that all healthcare
providers must have obtained and begun
using their NPI number(s). This includes
all providers who file electronic claims,
submit claim attachments electronically,
or use the Internet or any other electronic
means to verify eligibility, or check
claim status. Even if none of these
criteria apply to your practice, there
may still be insurance carriers who
will require that claims be submitted
with NPI number(s). If you have not
obtained one yet for your practice,
you can obtain your NPI(s) from one
of the following:
phone: 1-800-465-3203 (NPI
1-800-692-2326 (NPI TTY)
email at: email@example.com
By mail at:
PO Box 6059
Fargo, ND 58108-6059
You will need to provide the healthcare
provider’s social security number,
the individual tax ID number, the employer
ID (EIN or SSN), the provider’s
license number and state of licensure,
and any other provider ID numbers, in
addition to the dental taxonomy number.
You can choose your taxonomy number
from the list below:
According to the January 2008 issue
of “The Friday Letter”,
many healthcare providers will need
more than one NPI. The following should
help you to determine what you need:
- General Practice-1223G0001X
- Dental Public Health-1223D0001X
- Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology-1223P0106X
- Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology-1223X0008X
- Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery-1223S0112X
- Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics-1223X0400X
- Pediatric Dentistry-1223P0221X
- Sole proprietors who are not incorporated
and file taxes under their social
security numbers need only obtain
a type 1 NPI.
- A single healthcare provider
who is not in a group practice and
who files taxes under a TIN other
than his personal SSN, requires
a Type 1 for himself and at least
one Type 2 for the business
- A group practice filing the business’
taxes under a TIN that is other
than any member’s SSN, requires
an unique Type 1 for each healthcare
provider and at least one Type 2
for the business.
best way to create a sense of shared
meaning is to develop a mission statement
that conveys the dental team’s
primary goals for the practice.”
Mark Scarbecz, Ph.D.
This quote1 is a favorite
of mine because it expresses the importance
of creating a mission statement for
every practice. What better message
can I offer as I launch this first newsletter?
The mission statement, which expresses
the practice’s values and vision,
creates the building blocks to greatness.
This mission statement need only have
four to six basic values because they
are what will make up the basic core
of the practice.
In preparation, I suggest that some
reading be done in books such as “Good
to Great” that show how other
businesses have created their visions.
For startup practices, creating the
mission statement is as important as
all of the other initial steps that
must be taken to open a practice. If
existing practices have not established
their mission statement, it is not too
late. In either case, the doctor needs
to give in-depth thought to what he/she
sees as his/her vision for the practice.
The next step is to have staff members
give thought to what they perceive to
be the practice’s vision. Then
a staff meeting should be held where
all thoughts can be laid out and discussed,
and after much discussion the mission
statement can be formulated. By having
total team participation, a sense of
ownership of this mission will be created
for the entire team. This will ensure
that the staff has an innate desire
for achievement of the mission statement
and the resultant success of the practice.
Over the course of time, it can be easy
to fall into a complacency trap regarding
the practice mission. Evaluation of
how the practice is following its mission
statement should be done at regular
intervals, such as during staff meetings.
Measures must be taken if it is determined
that the practice is falling short on
its mission. New employees should always
have an orientation session where the
practice’s mission statement is
discussed as well as the importance
of this employee’s contribution
to the success of the mission statement.
So don’t delay. The sooner your
team is working towards the same goals...
then the sooner your practice will be
on the road to greatness!
- ones that will make patients know
that your practice is the best
- ones that will make starting each
day a true enjoyment for the team
M. Enhancing relationships
among dental team members: The application
of research on marital interaction.
J Am Dent Assoc 2004 Nov; 135(11):1591-1596.
for simplifying dental-medical cross
Establishing medical necessity is one
of the most important parts of filing
successful dental-medical cross coded
claims. One easy way to help practices
determine which patients are dentally/medically
compromised is through our patient forms.
The new patient registration form needs
to have an up to date medical history
section. In addition, your practice
should develop a recare update form
that includes a medical update section.
The following should always be included
in your list of questions on these forms,
as they all are indicators of possible
or family history of:
- Heart disease or stroke
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Artificial Joints
- Periodontal Disease
- Tobacco Use
- Excessive Alcohol Use
- Teeth grinding or clenching
vitamins, and herbs taken routinely
the busy pace in most dental practices,
it is hard to be sure that you have
questioned the patient completely concerning
their dental and medical status and
needs. Why not incorporate these into
your forms to guarantee that your practice
has addressed all of them? In addition,
include a question asking if the patient
is happy with his/her smile and if there
are any changes that your practice can
help him/her with. This can open a dialogue
with patients that can result in increased
As a side note, if your practice accepts
assignment of benefits, your recare
update form should also have a section
for updating the patient’s insurance
coverage. Along with this there should
be a place for the signature of the
patient or parent/guardian that authorizes
the release of information to the insurance
carrier as well as a signature that
authorizes benefits to be paid to the
dentist. These signatures are only valid
for one year, so recare update forms
that require these signatures will keep
for the quarter:
Just let me finish and
you will be another man after
these cosmetic procedures.
Patient: Okay doc, but
don't forget to send your bill
to the other man.
there someone you think would be interested
in this newsletter?
Please feel free to forward this email to
them. Thank you!
Art of Practice Management
2217 Fox Horn Road • New Bern, NC 28562 • Phone: 1-252-637-6259