Selecting a collection agency for your dental office can be challenging. Here are key factors to consider:
Reputation Protection: It’s common for dental offices to worry about the impact of a collection agency on their reputation. Opt for an agency that employs friendly yet effective tactics, such as using a combination of written notices and phone calls, to recover unpaid bills without harming your practice’s image.
Need a Collection Agency? Contact us
In-house debt collection in dental practices can be costly and distract from patient care. While in-house collections might protect your bottom line, they can strain patient relationships. Kinum, Inc. offers a unique solution, emphasizing efficient collections through gentle yet effective reminders to start with. Our aim is to allow your team to concentrate on providing excellent patient care, leaving the debt collection to us.
Dental Collections Experience: Look for an agency with a strong portfolio of medical and dental clients ( we recommend they have hundreds of medical and dental clients). This indicates their expertise in dental debt collection. Additionally, agencies with multilingual collectors, including Spanish speakers, are preferable.
Data Security: Verify the agency’s security credentials, like SOC audit certifications, SSL for online portals, and two-factor authentication, to ensure patient data remains secure and reduce the risk of data breaches and potential lawsuits.
HIPAA Compliance: Ensure the agency is compliant with HIPAA regulations, this is not a nice-to-have choice but HIPAA is mandatory for all medical-related collections.
Legal Compliance: Agencies should adhere to both federal and state laws. Agencies licensed in all 50 states offer the advantage of handling debts even if patients relocate.
Cost Considerations: It is easy to drift towards the cheapest choice. Avoid extremely low-cost agencies as they may compromise on quality and effectiveness. Remember, good collection agencies incur costs for licensing, staff, and operational expenses. Agencies that charge very little may focus only on high-balance or easy-to-recover debts, affecting overall recovery rates.
Recovery Rates: High recovery rates are crucial. Treat the agency as a partner, submitting debts early and providing necessary documentation. Check if they offer any guarantee for their collection results.
Client Reviews: Do some self-research the agency online. Check ratings and reviews on platforms like BBB or Google. Be mindful that some negative reviews may come from debtors, but the overall feedback should be positive. For example Kinum Collection Agency has a BBB rating of A+ and Google rating of 4.85 of 5 from 1300 reviews. Its obvious, some reviews will be negative since many debtors don’t like people who made them pay, but predominantly most reviews should be good. They should talk if the debtor collector was supportive and if they offered payment plans.
Adherence to Laws: Ensure the agency is up-to-date with laws like FDCPA, TCPA, HIPAA, REG-F, GLBA, and others. Regular training for collectors in legal compliance is a good sign.
Client Portal and Accessibility: A secure client portal for easy management of accounts is essential. Check if they offer batch processing and provide both a dedicated account representative and a central customer support number.
Agency Size: Medium to large agencies are generally more reliable due to their stability. Recent regulations have increased operational costs, leading to the closure of many small agencies. Choosing a larger agency ensures continuity and avoids disruptions in ongoing collection processes.
Contract Terms and Complementary services: We believe in “use as needed, no commitment, no hidden costs and zero on-boarding cost“. Free credit bureau reporting ( if requested by the dental office), free skip tracing, free bankruptcy screening and litigious patient check are a huge plus.
Tip: Not many collection agencies have a fixed-fee service option, as they hardly make any money from it. Most agencies offer contingency only option. Fixed fee demands are not only are a low-cost option, this entire service may be free for you if you claim it as business expense. Fixed-fee demands are the best way to amicable collections and for protecting your reputation. Patients pay directly to you and not the agency.