Monthly Archives: August 2011

Bake Sale Recap

The Bake Sale for Somalia was a big success in our office.  We were able to raise $1500 that will be donated via our EHG Fund to UNICEF to benefit the refugees of Somalia.  Members from all departments participated, Lori (Client Services Manager) baked delicious brownies and cookies, Asef (Content Writer) baked blondies and Texas sheet cake for the sale, and Sidra (Social Media Coordinator) whipped up some red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.  All the baked goods were a hit and we were really excited to have raised so much for the Somali refugees.

Here are some of the highlights of our bake sale:

Home made items for the bake sale: Red Velvet Cupcakes, Brownies, Blondies & Cookies

Here are some more photos of staff enjoying the baked goods:

Emilia, Asef & Nathaniel enjoy treats from the bake sale

Overall, the entire office was happy to join in and it was a nice way to enjoy baked goods for an incredible cause.  We were all overjoyed at the final count (which included a match by the Sales Manager, Ken, and a match by the EHG Fund as well).

Reading about the devastation in Somalia touched our hearts and we knew we had to do something.  Families escape Somalia on foot, with what little possessions they have, often traveling anywhere between 21 and 40 days to reach refugee camps.  Their journey is treacherous as they face hunger, little to no water, scorching heat and thieves.  Many do not survive the trip.

The U.N. refugee agency announced Tuesday that child mortality rates at a camp for Somali refugees in Ethiopia have reached “alarming” levels. An average of 10 children under the age of 5 years have died every day since June at the Kobe camp. Acute malnutrition, compounded by a measles outbreak, is believed to be the cause.”  Read More here: http://www.nytimes.com/cwire/2011/08/22/22climatewire-african-drought-victims-create-worlds-larges-97673.html

Refugees entering camps, photo courtesy of BBC

We can go on about the devastation, but truly, we can’t know what’s going on without being there.  What we do know is this region badly needs funds.  According to the BBC, the UN refugee head Antonio Guterres has said this is a “human tragedy of unimaginable proportions.”  The EHG Fund is collecting donations here on our Facebook page.  Additionally, all donations made up until the end of September will be sent directly to Somalia by the EHG Fund.

We also encourage offices to host fundraisers and awareness in their offices to benefit the Somali refugees.  Visit www.EHGFund.org for more information about the EHG Fund.

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What Does That Fee Mean Anyway?

Accepting credit cards in your office is almost essential for the convenience of your patients.  In a day when wallets are more likely to carry debit and credit cards than they are to carry cash, it would be hard-pressed to find a dental office that does not accept credit or debit cards.  How do you choose the perfect merchant processor for your office?

Rewards Credit Cards Like These Often Have Less Favorable Rates

Now what do you do when you’re shopping around for a merchant processor?  Or, what do you do when you have many sales representatives knocking on your door for your business with hugely attractive rates?  For many business owners, finding a merchant processor can be a very daunting and confusing task.  With all these terms flying around like “tiered pricing,” “interchange fees,” “qualified rate” and “mid-qualified rate,” how do you know what they are and what they mean for your overall merchant services bill?  For example, did you know that swiping airline rewards cards and department store rewards cards usually carry a less favorable rate than the use of regular Visa and MasterCard?

We figured our clients could use a crash course on the terms they see.   Here’s a breakdown of the key terms:

Qualified Rate:

This is usually the most favorable rate and involves a regular consumer credit card, meaning a non-rewards cards.

Mid-Qualified Rate:

The mid-qualified rate usually refers to rewards cards and airlines cards.

Non-Qualified Rate:

This usually pertains to payments made while the card is not present, for example, payment made over the phone, on the internet, or automatic payments, as well as business cards.

You can usually choose between a physical (left) and virtual (right) terminal

Some other factors, like the type of card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, Debit, Rewards) also plays into effect the qualification of the card.

In general, PIN-based transactions cost retailers significantly less money, so it may be in your best interest to automatically prompt patients to enter a pin on the terminal where they swipe their cards rather than complete a signature-based transaction.

Offices might wonder why the merchant charges you a percentage for swiping a credit card in the first place.  The reason for this is that the merchant has to pay the issuer of the credit card (the cardholder’s bank) to compensate the issuer for their risk in accepting, carrying, and collecting cardholder charges.  These are called interchange fees.  To make up for these fees the merchant is charged, they in turn charge you, the business owner a fees in their tiered pricing.

Other terms common on a merchant bill: equipment leasing fees (do you wonder if your’s is too high?), monthly maintenance fees, set-up fees, programming fees, and the list goes on!!

Allow us us analyze a recent statement to determine your potential savings with PayConnect. We can decipher even the most complex statement and provide you with a true, apples-to-apples comparison.  Give us a call at 800-576-6412 x 467 and send us a merchant statement for your free rate analysis.  Even if you’re stuck in a contract, our friendly specialists can go over the fees you’re being charged, so you can make a more informed decision the next time around.

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Bake sale for Somalia

As we enjoy our summer barbecues, our office parties, and our fun family dinners, we should think to remember the people overseas who greatly need our help.

The EHG Fund has helped thousands of people in Africa and Asia by building schools and hospitals. Now we are focusing on helping the people of Somalia. The region is going through one of the most severe droughts in over 60 years and has led to one of the worst famines in recent history. Refugees are making their ways to camps in Kenya and other parts of Africa, their children arriving severely malnourished and under weight.  CNN’s Sanjay Gupta describes the misery in this heartbreaking article here.

Image courtesy of the BBC

An estimated 12.5 million people in the region are affected by the drought. The UN has declared a famine in five areas of southern Somalia, where 50% of children are acutely malnourished and four children out of every 10,000 are dying daily.

Yes, you read that correctly.  That’s 4 children dying daily of preventable causes.   We need to help them.

Somali refugees arriving in Kenyan camps for aid

Together with the EHG Fund, the DentalXChange team is hosting an in-office fundraiser next week.  Our idea is simple, we are hosting a bake sale and charging $2 per cupcake, with 100% of the proceeds going to the EHG Fund. We are going to bake red velvet cupcakes and other yummy treats and place them in the kitchen to raise money for the refugees. We will also be taking donations above and beyond the bake sale.

DentalXChange employees can also donate to the EHG Fund through payroll deductions and since all the proceeds in September will be sent to Somalia, we will be encouraging all employees to enroll.

How can you Help?

DentalXChange gives your practice the option to donate to the EHG Fund with each claim you send. You have the option of donating 1-5 cents per claim and DentalXChange will match 100% of your donation each month!

What else can you do to help? Host a bake sale in your offices like we are at DentalXChange! Offer cookies, cupcakes or other treats (my favorite red velvet recipe is this one here.) to your patients for a small donation.  All donations made to the EHG Fund Facebook causes will be directed towards Somalia.

We want to help right away and feel the best way for us to get started and to inspire our clients to do the same is to host a bake sale next Tuesday, August 23.  Will you please join us in hosting one in your office?

We know that no amount is too little to donate to the Somalian refugees. We hope that we generate some donations for those suffering from the drought and pray that relief will come soon.

For our Somalia Bakesale, we will be making Red Velvet Cupcakes

I hope this inspires you to do a bake sale of some sort in your office!

We’re asking offices to participate in a bake sale to help aid these refugees. Please make contributions to the EHG Fund Facebook causes HERE

We are hosting ours next Tuesday, August 23.  Will you participate?

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Email Etiquette Webinar

Do you often wonder how your e-mails can be more effective?  Join the  National Dental EDI Council (NDEDIC) for their Email Etiquette Webinar next Thursday, August 11.   Many of our DentalXChange staff members are participating, and we invite our clients to join in as well!   This webinar will provide you with tips to ensure your emails are more professional and accurate.

Please see details below (or visit this link for more details):

Webinar:  Email Etiquette

Date:      Thursday, August 11, 2011

Time:      2:00 PM Eastern; 1:00 PM Central; 12:00 Noon Mountain; 11:00 AM Pacific

Cost:     $40 per member site; $50 per non-member site

To Register:      Click here to register online or contact the NDEDIC office (602) 266-7740

Objectives:            

  • Learn to write clear, concise email which quickly conveys the information people need and gets results
  • Use email time more productively
  • Convey a professional image
  • Identify topics and information which are not appropriate for email

About our Program:

Email is ideal for the kinds of quick messages that most of us send in response to questions, to pass along information, and to make requests.  We use email because it is quick and easy.  Ensuring accuracy and clarity in your emails is important.  Do your emails contain an offensive ‘tone’?  Are they often misunderstood?  NDEDIC’s webinar on “Email Etiquette” will provide you with some tips and tricks to ensure your emails are professional and accurate.

About our Speaker:

Catherine Magnall, a leading expert in professional and organizational development currently leads the professional services group at Quality Systems, Inc., dental unit.  As QSIDental responds to aggressive growth, the company recently reorganized key departments including client implementation/training, professional development, eLearning and customer satisfaction under the umbrella of professional services.

Prior to joining QSI, Catherine led a national staffing organization as vice president, training and operations.  In 1998 when on-line training was in its infancy, Catherine successfully developed, launched and succeeded in training over 1800 employees in preparation for a national, mission-critical software roll out.  Additionally, Catherine created the organization’s internal university that focused on blended learning concepts in areas of customer service, sales and leadership.

As a result of 25 years in corporate America, Catherine’s experience enabled her to launch her own staffing business, MedSearch Financial, Inc., where she and her team of healthcare professionals provided training and recruitment functions for the business side of healthcare.

Catherine is a dynamic virtual classroom facilitator who sparks enthusiasm with learning.  We are pleased to have her share her experience with us.

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Do You Want to Send Electronic Claims, but Don’t Have a Dental Software? It’s possible!

So you don’t have a dental software in your office.  You use your desk calendar to schedule appointments and you know all the ADA CDT claim codes by heart.  You spend about two hours a day filling out dental claim forms and mailing them out, and another hour per day fixing the ones that have gotten sent back to you with errors.  Some days you’re tired of having to make the corrections, and some days you stay overtime because there is just too much paperwork to catch up on.  However, you think all this has worked out just fine because after all, the claims are getting paid and your paycheck has never bounced.

And oops!  You got a rejection notice back from an insurance company for Jane Smith–you were missing information on the claim form. You forgot to specify the surface on the composite filling and now the insurance company is asking for the surface (shouldn’t the insurance companies know anyway that you’ve been working in insurance for 10 years and you know that D2330 is for one surface!).  After fixing the claim and sending it back, it will be another 4 weeks before this claim gets paid, making the grand total time about 7  weeks.

Sending electronic claims is easy

Thankfully, DentalXChange offers web-based online claim submission, which makes it easy to send claims and pre-estimates without an expensive dental software.  Few offices managers know of the web-based claim portal with DentalXChange’s Direct Data Entry package.  No software to buy, unlimited training/technical support, and of course, this service is extremely simple.

Dr. Vincent Vivirito’s office in Des Plaines, IL switched from paper claims to web-based claim connect in April.  Erica, who has worked at the office for 12 years now, says, “The whole system overall is pretty simple and easy!  You get paid from insurance a lot faster.  Mailing claims would take a month and a half to two months and now we have payments within 2 weeks already.”

Our partner insurance companies enable you to send claims for FREE (list available upon request), while our non-partner insurance companies accept claims for just 37 cents per claim.  The best part–DentalXChange has the ability to send all your claims and pre-estimates for you, even if we don’t have an electronic connection with the payer, we drop the claims down to paper for no additional cost.

Reasons you should make the switch:
1)  Save Time: Quicker claim turnaround time (2-15 days for electronic claims vs. up to 45 days for paper claims!)
2) Save Money: Dr. Jeffrey West from Chapel Hill, NC switched to DentalXChange in April as well and says, “It has lowered my overhead in the sense that less time has to be spent filling out forms by hand and a claim submitted electronically is cheaper than paper, envelope and a stamp.”
3) Reduce Date Entry: Store patient data online so you don’t have to reenter in the next time the patient visits
4) Go Green: Sending electronic claims is a great way to be more eco-friendly and environmentally cautious
5) It’s Easy!:  Erica from Dr. Vivirito’s office agrees that you “don’t have to be a pro at the computer to figure out electronic claims.”

Dr. West adds, “I’m not using a practice management software package and have all Mac computers in my office, so DentalXchange’s browser-based interface has been perfect.  My staff caught on quickly and it has become second-nature to enter claims.  We are thrilled with the service.”

We hope this helps you with your decision to switch to electronic dental claims!  It’s easier than you think.  Give our office a call at 800-576-6412 x 467 if you have any questions.  Remember, we always offer a 30-day worry free guarantee, which means if you’re not satisfied, you don’t owe us a dime.

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