What to Tell Patients When Dropping Their PPO

One common question I get is what to say to patients when you drop their insurance plan so that they stay with you. Remember to put on your “consumer” hat, not your dentist hat. Obviously from a business perspective you are dropping their insurance because it doesn’t pay well enough to justify the write-offs. As a dentist you may want to go into detail about the quality of materials you use, the continuing education you’ve taken or increasing costs of running a dental practice to explain why you’ve dropped a plan. While communicating the quality of care you are providing is important, patients really want to know exactly what the change means for them in terms of cost. Many patients have little knowledge of their insurance and may assume that they can’t see an out-of-network provider when in actuality there could be very little, if any, difference to them cost wise. Very few patients will call their insurance company to check on their benefits. Since I spend a portion of my day on the phone with insurance companies myself I can certainly understand why. I know what questions to ask, the patient does not. I suggest telling the patient “most insurance plans offer the same percentage benefits in or out of network. Would you like me to call your insurance plan for you to get the details of your insurance and call you back?”. It’s time consuming but an effort your patients will appreciate. To get more help dropping a PPO in your practice, visit our Contact Us page.