Provider-patient relationship: price transparency

“How much is that going to cost?”

“I have insurance though. Shouldn’t that be covering the cost of this procedure?”

“Why are you charging me $__ while other sources indicate that it should cost about half that amount?”

These are all common questions being asked by patients, and are continuously on the rise as information is more easily available online and patients begin to wonder why online pricing information doesn’t align with what their dentist is charging. Patients that are responsible for their own dental bills or those with insurance with minimal coverage are becoming increasingly proactive in educating themselves about true dental care costs given that just one procedure can cost an entire month’s paycheck. With the increased exposure to fair pricing online, patients can then hope to leverage that with their dentists to avoid being overcharged. It simply takes one google search  with the name of a procedure and the word “cost”, such as dental implants cost, and there is an abundance of information regarding the typical costs of the procedure and what it should cost.

There’s a clear trend – the dentist-patient relationship paradigm is shifting, and in a way that is relying heavily on communication and price transparency. This is a win-win approach –  it’s certainly valuable to the patient, but that in turn also makes this approach beneficial for a dental practice. Understanding the typical rates for certain procedures versus the information on the web can allow dentists to reevaluate costs to be more accommodating for patients, which will allow dentists to meet maximum productivity with competitive rates.

So, what’s the solution?

One way to ensure patients that you’re charging fair prices is by using Zentist’s platform for providing patients second opinions with transparent pricing that’s based on the thousands of treatment costs and insurance claims that Zentist has reviewed to understand and calculate fair pricing. Zentist’s platform also ensures patients finding dentists that work within their budgets to provide an abundance of available options. Furthermore, engaging with patients is critical. Understanding their needs, concerns, and just letting them know that you’re there to hear them out because you care will be the building blocks to secure a trustworthy relationship with your patients. Whether it’s in person, over secure email, or even a online chatting platform secure within HIPAA compliance, be more than just a dentist – be a friend!

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