Q: I recently chose a dental office for my complex dental needs. My plan gave me a list of providers. I visited three offices and found all of them to be awful. What do you suggest?
A: If insurance paid for haircuts and coloring, would you pick a stylist from a list of “participating providers”? Heck no, unless you want to look like the lead singer from the 90’s band Flock of Seagulls.
You can get away with picking from a list of doctors for your medical doctors since most take many plans and you don’t have a yearly maximum dollar amount of benefits to worry you. Dentistry is a whole different bag of mangos.
Most plans max out at $1000 per year, which fixes half a tooth and buys a Frappuccino. Therefore, you are not going to save a whole lot of money anyway buy going in-network for dentists.
Here is what patients have told me when they go to an In-Network or DMO (HMO) Dental office just because they found their names on a list (These are direct quotes from actual patients):
- High volume like a factory with poor customer service
- Each day has a different doctor
- Specialists sometimes come in on one day per week or one day per month. Good luck if you have a complication! You have to wait until his next day at that location.
- Takes forever to get in for a cleaning.
- Hygienist only took 15 minutes for a cleaning and did not do a thorough job.
- Out of pocket fees were heavy and not explained well
- Less experienced doctors
- Poor follow up care and no post op calls after hours
- Cleanliness issues
- Lack of Google reviews for the doctors because the office is owned by a franchise company with an out of state headquarters.
- Extremely transitory doctors and staff. Come back a month later and you won’t recognize anyone.
- Equipment seemed dated.
Our next FREE seminar to the public will focus on how to evaluate a dental office to see if it is right for you and your family. To get started in your search, check google reviews and take a tour of a few offices. Don’t just go by a list of docs.
Editor’s Note: Join Dr. Mitchell Josephs Friday December 8th, 11:30 AM at the Double Tree Hotel in Palm Beach Gardens on PGA Blvd for Teeth for Life XXVI. A multimedia presentation that will cover, Implants, bone grafts, sinus lifts, cosmetic veneers, digital, no-goop impressions, ouch-less electronic injections, and how to evaluate an office to see if it is hi-tech for you and your family. All attendees receive a copy of my book: “Tooth Talk-What Educated Dental Patients Need to Know about 21st Century Dental Treatment.” Only 49 seats remain! Call or email us today to register: 561-832-2917, email@example.com