A Dental Invoice is used in a dentist’s office by the office staff to bill patients for services rendered. It lists costs for materials used and services provided during an appointment or procedure.
For insured patients, dental offices often first bill the patient’s insurance company and then invoice the patient for any remaining amount. For uninsured patients, the invoice is usually administered immediately after an appointment, with payment expected at that time.
Correct billing is essential because low collections will directly affect the cash flow and profit of the business. A straightforward billing process encourages on-time payments that cover every aspect of a patient’s dental care.
- Break down materials and labor costs to avoid disputes with patients and insurance companies.
- Create paper trails for payments in case any questions or issues arise.
- Help dental offices project future profits by correctly understanding their current collections.
What to Include
A detailed invoice for dental services should include:
- Invoice number: Make sure the number of each invoice is unique to keep proper records
- Company name and information: Write the official, legal name of the company and at least one form of contact information
- Patient name and information: Write the full, legal name of the patient and at least one form of contact information in case your office needs to reach them about payment later on
- Issued date: Record the date that the invoice was given or sent to the patient
- Payment due date: Record the date that the full payment is due or when installments are due if applicable
- Payment process: Explain the different ways in which a patient can pay the amount due
- Late payment policies: State any penalties for late payment and explain exactly when they come into effect
- Notes: Add any notes about potentially confusing elements of the invoice
How to Invoice a Dental Patient
To invoice a patient, follow the below:
1. Plan Payment Policies
Having a clear plan for how patients and insurers should pay and how your office should set due dates for payments creates a more cohesive collection process. Office staff, doctors, and hygienists should also be clear on when and how to let patients and insurance companies know how much a specific treatment will cost to avoid problems.
2. Establish Insurance Before Appointment
Ask the patient for their insurance details and make a copy of their card before the appointment to make communications with their insurance company easier. This helps to establish clearly who will pay for which materials and services rendered.
If the patient is uninsured, it will help their hygienist and dentist to know ahead of time so they can more clearly communicate about any additional costs that may be incurred throughout the appointment.
3. Itemize All Relevant Costs
List all costs incurred during that day’s treatment. This may include payments for a regular appointments, materials, X-rays, procedures, and any goods the patient purchased from the office. Specificity helps avoid confusion and hold-ups when billing insurance companies and patients themselves.
4. Present Dental Invoice for Payment
Printing and handing the invoice to the patient at your office is the best way to ensure that the patient receives the bill promptly. It also allows the patient to ask questions and address any issues with bill items upfront.
Some dental practices email or mail invoices, especially if they’re waiting to hear back from a patient’s insurance company before billing them for the remaining amount. In this case, it’s wise to follow up with the patient separately to ensure receipt and answer any questions.
Sample Dental Invoice
Below, you can download a dental invoice in Word or Excel format:
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do Dental Insurance Claims Work With a Dental Invoice Template?
The proper claim forms should be submitted to the insurance company first, followed by a dental invoice presented to the patient for their portion of the payment. The invoice should include what has been or will be paid by the insurance so the patient can clearly see what they owe and why.
Is it Common to Include a Payment Plan or Financing Information in a Dental Invoice Template?
If applicable, it makes sense to include this information in the dental invoice. Some clinics decide to offer financing options to specific patients, and having a paper record of this will help to ensure the payment plan process runs smoothly.
Are There Any Legal or Privacy Considerations When Using a Dental Invoice Template?
Yes, HIPAA applies to dental invoices just like any other medical record. Ensure you’re handling all medical information carefully per HIPAA policies.