Are you paying your dentists off the day sheet? | Dentrix Training for Dental Office Managers

Dentrix Training for Dental Office Managers: Paying Dentists Calculation

Many dental offices run a day sheet at the end of the month to see the collections for the dentist, and then they calculate their 30% compensation from this collections number. Sound familiar?piggybank

Here’s the problem.

Using the day sheet to pay your dentists doesn’t show you the kind of information you need to see in order to understand the hit you’re taking from insurance write offs and other discounts (new patient, senior citizen, pay in full). Plus, most of the time, these adjustments are not set up right – and if that’s the case, you’re not paying your dentists fairly.

There is a better report in Dentrix to use to pay your dentists: Provider AR Totals. This report shows everything:

  • Gross production
  • Positive production adjustments
  • Negative production adjustments
  • Net production
  • Gross collection
  • Positive collection adjustments
  • Negative collection adjustments
  • Net collection

Plus, it includes a list of the adjustments so you can see how each one is set up in your system.

Here are some common adjustments:

  • Insurance write off
  • Senior citizen discount
  • Professional courtesy
  • Cash discount

Another problem with ignoring the adjustments in your practice is that when something is invisible, you cant control it. When you never look at your adjustments, you don’t realize the impact they have on your bottom line. For example,  your insurance write off should be set up as a production adjustment, not as a collection adjustment. This makes a big difference in how your collection percentage looks.

If you have signed up for several plans and each of them requires a 20%-30% reduction in your fees to follow their fee schedule, then obviously you cannot charge the patient up to your full fee. However, if you have this insurance write off set up as a collection adjustment, it will look like your front desk staff is not doing a very good job collecting money. So, you will think you have a problem with collections, when in reality, your collections are great, its your production that needs work!

So, if you are using a day sheet to pay yourself or your associate dentists, and you are not checking your adjustments, then it can seem like 30% of your income is just disappearing!

If you’re interested to learn more about how the set up of your adjustments affects your reports – and ultimately, the management decisions you make, click here:

How to Set Up Adjustments

Managing adjustments is just one way to run a successful dental practice. If you’re interested in new ideas on running a dental practice, please subscribe to my weekly blog. One of the biggest challenges to managing a dental practice is managing dental insurance. With dental insurance handled, then dental marketing for new patients becomes a primary focus. In today’s day of online reviews, handling patient complaints well is essential. As your practice grows, hiring dental staff becomes more important. With 17+ years of dental practice management experience, I’m open to your questions to help you run a successful dental office.

AUTHOR: Jill Nesbitt
  • Sonya

    Would these calculations still be inaccurate if the insurance company fees are set up in Dentrix and attached to appropriate patient charts? Thanks.

    April 23, 2015
    • Sonya,

      Yes, they could be – its a different part of the software. You can have your insurance fees set up properly in Dentrix, but still have the adjustments set up incorrectly.

      Thanks for asking!


      April 24, 2015