Skip to main content

Investigate Dental Subscription Options - New Learning for the Dental Team

If your dental team is faced with downtime, you might consider having them learn about a new product or service that results in more patients and more income for the office.

A dental subscription is a way to create recurring revenue for your office and create loyalty with your patients.  But what type of subscription is right for your office and what should you consider when setting up your subscription program?

Who will administer the subscription?
            Option 1: Dental office does everything from designing the plan, crafting legal documents, contacting patients monthly for collections and renewals, maintaining financial records of transactions, maintaining renewal dates. Administering this plan is possible but requires significant startup costs, time and labor to administer.
            Option 2: Contract with a dental membership administrator. There are many companies offering services and the level of service varies greatly. Some offer dental practices a workbook outlining components to consider and a framework for the subscription but leave the work up to the dental office. Others provide comprehensive support for administering a subscription program.
            Option 3: Stick with traditional dental insurance. Dental insurance is basically a membership program where members pay to indemnify against certain outcomes but the members belong to the insurance company rather than the dental office. Most patients receive little if any indemnification for a risk, the patient typically only uses known preventive care. Many dental insurance companies keep between 30-50% of subscription fees or more. The opportunity to offer in-office subscriptions creates a huge economic incentive for patients to pay less and dental offices to make more by eliminating the high overhead of traditional insurance and passing these savings to dental offices and patients.

What features will the subscription have?
·      Preventive Care – This is what most subscriptions offer and what most patients want. It allows dental offices to regularly see their patients and provides an opportunity to diagnose or introduce options for other wants or needs.
·      Monthly or Annual Renewals – Studies have shown people rarely cancel monthly subscriptions if they receive something of value because it is part of their budget and doesn’t require sacrificing anything else.
·      Discount on other services – some practices decide to offer a discount on other services (some/all/combination) as an incentive to encourage patients to join the service. However, many practices offer no discount.
·      A way to pay for other services – Does the subscription have a feature such as an HSA/FSA or savings account that provides patients a source of funds to receive dental care when they need it or want it? Are there any restrictions in how the funds can be used? What happens if the funds aren’t used?
·      Online or In-Office signup – Can patients signup for the subscription or does your office staff need to handle the subscriptions?

What does it cost the dental office to administer the subscription?
·      Is there a startup or initiation fee for the dental office?
·      Is there a monthly fee for the dental office??
·      Is there a transaction fee for the office?
·      Is there a per patient fee for the office?
·      Is there a termination fee?
·      Is there a software fee for the office?
·      How much staff time is required to administer the subscription and is this more or less than other alternatives? For example, does it take less time to administer the monthly program for a dental subscription member than it does to file insurance claims, appeal denials, review changes in coverage, bill for any insurance balances due, pay for postage, etc.

How much work will it create or reduce for my office?
·      Who will be in charge of the subscription service?
·      How much training do they need to get the subscription started?
·      How much time is required monthly or annually to run the program?
·      If I didn’t have a monthly subscription how else would my patients pay for care and what would I need to do to facilitate these payments?

With Cirrus Dental you can create the subscription that is best for your office. You can determine the services to include, you can set the price, you can determine to offer a discount on other services. Or you can use one of the ready-made standard subscriptions to get started. Cirrus provides you with the membership agreement for your patients. Patients can register online or in your office. Monthly subscriptions automatically renew and Cirrus handles collecting the money and depositing it in your account.

Cirrus only charges dental offices 3.5% of the money Cirrus deposits in your account.

Cirrus offers the refundable Nest Egg savings vehicle that can be used for any needed or wanted dental care.

In less than an hour an office can be up and running with Cirrus and patients can be registered in a dental office in less than two minutes to create a recurring monthly revenue. It takes even less time if patients complete the registration at home.

You can see the Cirrus platform with a live webinar or with one of our prerecorded webinars by visiting  


Popular posts from this blog

My Decision to Leave the Dental PPO's

In the fall of 2019, Delta Dental announced that they were going to reduce benefits for all of the patients in my practice with Delta coverage. I decided to make a change. I became a non-restricted provider.  It was a very scary decision. I had prepped my team that I was considering this change for months. But when the time came, I wasn't sure what the result would be. Would I lose 35% of my patients, would my practice be able to survive? Would I be able to retain my staff? I have great patients and a great staff and want to be able to provide the best dental care with the best staff. I sent a letter to all of my patients letting them know about my decision, that we still welcomed them in our practice, and letting them know that we were offering an alternative, an in-office membership. I had calculated that the membership was a great value that would cost the patient significantly less and allow us to earn more. To my surprise, very few patients left, many subscribed to our members

The Economic Cost of a 30 Minute Prophy That Now Takes 45 Minutes.

If a 30 minute prophy now takes you 45 minutes have your fees been adjusted accordingly? If you have 50 percent less time in your schedule, how will you fill your schedule? If you are participating with insurance companies with unrealistic reimbursement rates what will happen to your income. Many practices have maintained the salaries of their staff which should equate to 25-30% of revenue. If you now have an effective 50% increase in staffing costs due to increased appointment times, are you able to absorb the difference? Do you want to consider a change? It may sound counter intuitive, in a time with so much that is unknown, do you want to drop an insurance company now? With an in-office subscription service you can begin to take control of your economic future by setting fees that reflect the current economic reality.  Many dentists are now dropping big dental insurance carriers. They still accept payment from these insurance companies, they have just changed their stat