We know that a key part of a dental practice is not only diagnosing an issue with a patient, but also early diagnosis is a key to a patient’s overall oral health.
But how are trends looking when it comes to the use of diagnostics in the dental practice? According to data compiled by Sikka Software over the past seven years, practices are using more diagnostic technology more often to benefit their patients.
To find out trends, we examined data that has been collected by Sikka Software from more than 12,500 dental practices from around the United States. Here is what we found for the quantity of diagnostic services performed per month, per practice.
2010 – 371.83
2011 – 376.92
2012 – 380.83
2013 – 394.92
2014 – 411.50
2015 – 435.25
2016 – 438.25
What goes into these numbers? Sixty different diagnostics codes used by the American Dental Association, including ranging from bitewings to 3D CBCT scans.
So what are some of the reasons behind this trend? We asked insurance expert and nationally known speaker and author Teresa Duncan of Odyssey Management.
“This trend is in line with what I hear from attendees in classes,” Duncan said. “The insurance companies are requiring diagnostic records which is perceived by doctors as, ‘I should record as much as I can, just in case.’”
I asked Duncan if this was a negative trend if it’s driven by insurance.
“It’s not a bad trend. The industry as a whole is moving in this direction and SNO-DDS will make it standard,” she replied. “On the non-data side, it’s good for the patient. A doctor who makes treatment decisions with good, plentiful information will make better decisions in the end.”
How does this trend compare to what is happening in your practice? As a business owner, it’s important for you to not only know your numbers but also how those numbers compare to national averages. With the fourth quarter of the year set to begin on October 1, now is not only a good time to know what you need to know to end the year successfully, but also plan ahead for a profitable 2018.
Note: Want to learn more about what Sikka Software can do for your practice? Practice Mobilizer is the free app that lets you send HIPAA-compliant video messages, track patient arrival times, provides zip code specific fee data and more. Click here to download.
This article was previously published on September 12, 2017 on DrBicuspid. You can view the original article here: http://bit.ly/2xvxcYH
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