By Roger P. Levin, DDS
Money really matters in today’s economy. Regardless how polished your case presentation skills or how much parents want a straighter smile for their child, acceptance always comes down to cost, even for wealthy families. Financing represents a core consideration when parents weigh ortho treatment decisions.
One of the most important payment choices your practice can offer is patient financing through an external company. Outside financing accomplishes two objectives: it increases case acceptance rates, and it builds the value of your ortho practice.
A reputable patient financing company will offer health care credit cards that provide parents interest-free lines of credit, a very compelling and motivating factor to say yes to treatment. In fact, a 2010 study conducted by Levin Group found that 70% of responding dentists felt the availability of outside financing increased case acceptance in their practice.
Not only will parents more readily accept treatment for their children with outside financing, but they will also have more trust in your ortho practice when you address one of their major concerns from the start. You strengthen your relationship and discourage ortho shopping by demonstrating your concern for their well-being―not just for collecting a fee.
The way financing options are presented and the nature of those options both play critical roles. Successful scripting increases the effectiveness of case presentations by ensuring that payment plans are explained thoroughly and clearly. The focus should be on the following four advantages:
- Speedy process
The bottom line to parents is not just how much they pay―it’s how they pay. And the practice’s bottom line will benefit from giving parents flexibility. Some orthodontists worry about the small percentage of the fee they will have to pay the financing company. Given that many families could not afford ortho treatment without financing, practices risk losing potential cases if they don’t provide it. Remember, it’s always better to collect 95% of a treatment cost than 100% of nothing.
Attend Dr. Levin’s seminar, Peak or Valley—Where is Your Production Headed, October 2–3, 2014, in Baltimore, Maryland, tuition-free with an Educational Grant. Ask your Ortho2 Systems Consultant how to receive one.