ONLINE ONLY - Fee Data
Having adequate fees is vital for the success of all dental practices. One of the foundations for properly positioning your practice fees is to understand what other dentists charge for their services and how you compare to those practices in your general area. Information on dental practice fees is referred to as “fee data.” Fee data is often broken down by “percentile.” This percentile information helps the practice to know where it stands in comparison to other dental practices in the area.
Many practices question the best source to obtain fee data. There are multiple sources of fee data available in the marketplace today. Some data can be purchased, and some found for free online or in publications. Some information is available for large geographic areas and some for specific, three-digit zip code areas. Some data is obtained from surveys and some data is generated from electronic claim submissions. The accuracy of this fee data can vary widely. Basically, all sources of fee data vary in the way that information is obtained and provided, as well as the specificity of the data.
One source of fee data is the American Dental Associations (ADA). The ADA’s fee data is obtained from survey data and is limited to the information obtained from the members who take the time to respond to the questionnaire in broader geographic areas.
Henry Schein Dental (HSD) is probably one of the biggest sources of data in the marketplace, with the accessibility of Dentrix and Easy Dental data. HSD has large amounts of fee data obtained through its practice management systems used to file electronic claims.
Fair Health is considered the “go to” source of fairly accurate, unbiased fee data for consumers. Fair Health is a nonprofit organization, established in October 2009 by the New York Attorney General as a result of a dispute settlement. The purpose of Fair Health is to ensure transparency and fairness in patient charges and reimbursements by providing medical and dental fee information. It is considered an independent fee database, with fee data based on claims paid by many payers nationwide. In addition to providing fees, this website also explains various concepts related to healthcare charges.
Fair Health provides limited fee data for free, or more complex and discrete data for a fee. Specific dental fee data may be obtained by zip code and the information is available by percentile. This information is available to consumers for free, with set limitations on as to the number of procedures referenced at any one time. Fair Health also sells specific zip code fee data for anyone wanting to access all fees, for all services, in a given zip code area.
Visit Fair Health today at www.fairhealth.org. Be careful to read and understand the guidelines and limitations associated with Fair Health’s website.