I'm so angry - dentist charged for "behavior management"!

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by ThisIsTheYear, Sep 21, 2013.

  1. akcire

    akcire <font color=royalblue>Mouse expert, computer chall

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    My daughter is 2. She has a pediatric dentist. She has had 3 check ups cleanings. Each time she bites him and usually cries too. We have never had a behavior charge. Between him and the hygienist they bill $181, but that's what they always bill. We just went last week. Dentist was happy she was finally old enough to respond to verbal commands to stop biting. She can also be bribed with stickers to stop crying but it only lasts a minute, maybe next time.
     
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  3. ThisIsTheYear

    ThisIsTheYear Too far from Mickey!<br><a href="http://www.disboa

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    It was supposed to be $50 for the visit (I verified with ins before the appointment). They billed my insurance co and they won't pay the $35. There was a bunch of other fees that made the bill $110 but the only one that stuck out was the behavioral fee!
    If I was told there was a $35 charge for whatever it is that bill is for, I would have left!

    :rotfl2:

    To clarify, $110 is what the insurance co would not cover. They already billed the ins co. and they paid all but $110.
    That's the thing - what extra services did they provide? Between putting on the bonding and getting information, he was in the room for 10 minutes.

    He did a great job because I had the death grip on my daughter and didn't let her move an inch.
     
  4. dfchelbay

    dfchelbay DIS Veteran

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    Since YOU were the one managing your daughter's behavior by holding her down, then YOU SHOULD REFUSE TO PAY THAT! Saying shh, it's ok isn't doing anything at all. If they don't eat that charge, I'd refuse to pay it and find another dentist. I'd pay for the procedure itself but not for behavior management. You were doing everything except the actual five minute dental procedure.
     
  5. ThisIsTheYear

    ThisIsTheYear Too far from Mickey!<br><a href="http://www.disboa

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    That's crazy!
    Our pedi's office charges an additional fee if the appointment is after 5 or on Saturday and my ins won't cover that. I have to be careful to make my appointments at 4:45!
     
  6. ThisIsTheYear

    ThisIsTheYear Too far from Mickey!<br><a href="http://www.disboa

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    Just curious, do you think a Pediatrician should charge a behavioral management fee? I have to hold DD down when she gets her shots.
     
  7. ThisIsTheYear

    ThisIsTheYear Too far from Mickey!<br><a href="http://www.disboa

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    We had a great one but he doesn't take our insurance. (He had TVs in the room too! lol). Now I'm really considering paying out of pocket!
    I'm glad you found a great one!
     
  8. horseshowmom

    horseshowmom DIS Veteran

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    I agree. I could understand if this was a ten year throwing a fit and causing the procedure to be lengthened due to bad behavior, but I don't see how a procedure on a child that young could have been expected to go any faster or more smoothly.
     
  9. horseshowmom

    horseshowmom DIS Veteran

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    We don't have dental insurance, and our dentist does adjust his rates for cash customers. Have you asked them about it?
     
  10. ThisIsTheYear

    ThisIsTheYear Too far from Mickey!<br><a href="http://www.disboa

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    No I haven't, but I will! Thanks!
     
  11. Leajess99

    Leajess99 DIS Veteran

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    My kids don't go to a pediatric dentist. My youngest went to one for a couple of visits and I hated it there. We found a really good dentist and they have all done great with his office. They have tvs in the rooms and a huge fish tank with the bright fish. The dentist will talk to the kids and treat them with respect. They do have the parents wait in the waiting room as it seems to work better for the kids. I'm not sure the youngest age he sees though.

    OP - talk to the dentist and see if they will do whatever needs done to accept your insurance. Some are very understanding and will do what they can to keep good patients
     
  12. tvguy

    tvguy Question anything the facts don't support.

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    I had never heard of the fee before, just pointing out that after some research it is apparently common and accepted practice. I will add, that Medicare also considers this a legitimate charge for those covered, so it's not just kids or dentists.

    I have no opinion on whether it should be charged.
     
  13. Shelleybeans

    Shelleybeans See there's this mouse... he kinda has my heart!

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    UNACCEPTABLE. I worked as a dental assistant for 13 years in WA state prior to becoming an RN 3 years ago. We NEVER charged for behavior management once. I know because I was the one who entered the charges and/ or verbally told the receptionist what to bill for. I am shocked that they charged you for something without giving you a quote ahead of time!!!! What 15 month old would hold still and not yell out for that!?
     
  14. pigletto

    pigletto DIS Veteran

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    That does seem like a weird charge. I mean if you are a pediatric dentist, it kind of goes with the territory doesn't it? I can see having something built into your fees because you spend a considerable amount of time managing frightened children, but "behavior management" just doesn't seem right.

    My son was terrified of the dentist and had a really strong gag reflex. He would try his best but always got sick and when he finally threw up all over the chair and the dental assistant we were referred to a pediatric dentist. It was 2 hours away and astronomically expensive, but luckily we were covered. I don't remember seeing anything about "behavior management" on the nearly $1200 bill but then again, he was sedated and had surgery so there was no behavior to be managed with a sleeping 5 year old":rolleyes1.
    Luckily he grew out of that quickly.
     
  15. luvmy3

    luvmy3 <font color=green>When I drink I find its easier t

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    My kid's dentist must not charge for behavior management otherwise my ds would be charged every time.
    I don't really see the issue with the charge in general, but OP I would call them and ask exactly what kind of behavior management they did because by your description it doesn't sound like anything above and beyond normal care.

    And to the pp who asked if pediatricians should charge, absolutely. I say that as a mom who has needed 2 nurses to come in and help me hold my son still for his shots. They were taken away from what they were doing and put at risk. He is better now that he is older, but I have left that office feeling like I owe them something.
     
  16. Gigi22

    Gigi22 DIS Veteran

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    Our family dentist had a unique form of behavior management. With kids old enough to go into his office alone, he slapped them if they acted out. Only heard about this a couple of years ago. Otherwise, he was a great dentist, did fine work.
     
  17. tvguy

    tvguy Question anything the facts don't support.

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    I remember going to a pediatric dentist, but don't recall any kids acting out, but my first visit to a regular dentist, a kid threw up in the waiting area. :scared1:

    My kids never went to a pediatric dentist. But our dentist was a neighbor, so for my kids, it was like going to the neighbor's office for a visit, not a trip to the dentist.
     
  18. sweetlovin'

    sweetlovin' DIS Veteran

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    I had the same thing happen to me when my little one (maybe 2) needed her tooth pulled. They wouldn't let me go back with her and she was scared. So they ended up putting some device on her that held her arms and legs down. Then, charged me for it.

    I was pissed and never went back and got really mad. :mad:

    I'm still mad..and my daughter just turned 11
     
  19. Karlzmom

    Karlzmom DIS Veteran

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    Just because a provider *CAN* bill for it, doesn't mean that they *SHOULD*. If there is a CPT code associated with the fee, there is a specific definition of what service it covers, not "almost" describes it, not "its seems like it produces a fair amount".....drives me crazy how many providers with "code stuff" into a CPT code to maximize their reimbursement. Not saying this is what the dentist did, but it is not unheard of and if the OP has a concern she should seek more information.

    OP- you would be within your rights inquire as to what precise service the dentist was attributing to "behavior management" and then make your decision as to whether or not you believe it was warranted and then decide whether to continue with the practice.
     
  20. WebmasterKathy

    WebmasterKathy Administrator Administrator

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    Could that fee refer to any kind of sedation, nitrous oxide or other numbing agents used?

    It sounds like you're offended by the name of this service, but you need to ask what it actually refers to.
     
  21. ThisIsTheYear

    ThisIsTheYear Too far from Mickey!<br><a href="http://www.disboa

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    He didn't use any of that. Just a clamp to keep her mouth open and 'stuff' he attached to the tooth.
     

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