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Costs Associated with Dental Memberships or Subscription Services

In-Office subscriptions can have a variety of service charges imposed by the administrators. Here we will outline some of the more common pricing strategies of management companies to help you make an educated determination of what is best for your office. Some companies have one price and some use a combination of costs.

·      Per Patient Fee – This is a fixed amount you will pay monthly or annually for every patient subscribed
·      Percentage Fee – This fee is a percentage of the funds you earn from your subscription
·      Processing Fee – Some plans require you to run all of your credit card transactions through their service and charge a fee based on these transactions
·      Monthly or Annual Fee – A set amount, regardless of the number of patients you have enrolled in the service
·      Sign-up Cost – A fee required to setup your account. Many times, this fee is waived. It is used as a hook to make you think you are getting a good deal if you signup immediately.

Some important questions to ask or answer about a subscription service provider:

·      Are my interests in line with the interests of the subscription management service. This means does the company get their money regardless of how many patients you sign up or do they only do well if you do well?
·      How many patients do I need to see to make the plan economical? For example, of the subscription requires a $500 monthly service fee and I am receiving $30/month from 50 patients what is my effective cost per patient? (In this example $30*50 = $1,500 so my effective cost would be 33% or $10/patient)
·      What happens if I decide to stop using the service? Are there termination fees?

·      What services are provided? Does the subscription handle collections or does my office handle collections?

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