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5 Tips to Improve Your Accounts Receivable Report

Edineth Bonilla, CDA, RDA, FAADOM with text, "Real-world insights from AADOM authors"

Let’s start off by saying that working on my office accounts receivable (A/R) report is one of my favorite things to do!


Being caught up in long wait times with an insurance company is definitely NOT!

While working on reports has tedious moments, the final product can be rewarding as a dental practice manager but CRUCIAL for running a productive practice.

Does your office submit insurance claims electronically, too?

If so:

If you were to pull up and print your outstanding claims report right now, would it be more than a page long?

We definitely have some work to do if the A/R is reflected on more than one page for over 30 days.

I work on these reports often.

My theory is that the quicker I figure out what is preventing the claim from being processed, the faster I can fix it and get it back on track.

As we know, there are so many factors why a claim could be pending for longer than it should.

Keep reading to learn tips on how to make your dental practice stronger with our dental insurance training advice!

1. Work on the outstanding claims report first

My first tip is to work on the outstanding claims report weekly since it goes hand in hand with the accounts receivable.

I know how busy our days can be, so I recommend working on the report in sections.

Actively working on your outstanding claims report will aid in preventing the patients on this list from possibly making it into your over 30-day A/R report.

2. Train your dental team

The second tip is to train all team members on properly entering insurance information on your software so that all the data is accurate from the very beginning of this process.

If your team is adequately trained on data entry for insurance and you’re billing accurately, the likelihood of your claim being under review or pending is minimal.

A huge factor I often see in a long accounts receivable report is incorrect data entry and missing information in patient charts.

3. Learn how to check claim status the right way

A third tip is that if your A/R report has multiple pages, I recommend first training someone on your team to check claim status properly.

Once a team member can efficiently assist you, split the report alphabetically.

For example:

You could split it from A-J, K-T, U-Z and have a team member responsible for a section while you take the remainder.

However, if you have more than one trained member, split the report even further, thus tackling the report even more quickly.

4. Use a paper trail

My fourth tip is implementing routing slips.

They’re an effective paper trail of services rendered during a visit.

Routing slips must be clear and easy to fill out.

For example, create the boxes and data on the routing slips to be a check-off style.

Suppose a procedure was accidentally deleted or the incorrect procedure was completed.

In that case, a properly used routing slip is a great backup support system.

5. Run tests often

As we know, something as simple as an incorrectly entered digit can affect a claim.

This is why my fifth tip is implementing data entry exercises and tests with your team quarterly.

I often find this keeps the team on board, and depending on the results from the tests, if team members need improvement, you can easily use the results as feedback.

I also find these exercises assist when we have a new hire.

I recommend completing a data entry test online during their first week with the practice. As a result, you’ll be able to identify their skills right away, and you’ll be able to determine if they need more training in this area.

Implement these tips

Overall, working on your reports is crucial!

The outstanding claims and accounts receivable reports are extremely important and, in my opinion, reflect just how efficient and productive a practice will be.

Meet the Author

Edineth BonillaEdineth Bonilla’s career in dentistry began six years ago as an RDA and evolved from there. Today, she is the practice manager at Jersey City Pediatric Dentistry… This text opens a new tab to the practice’s website….

She has been an AADOM member since 2018 and was inducted as a Fellow in 2020.

She loves all things dentistry, but when she isn’t at work, she likes to work on puzzles, play board games, cook, and spend time with her fiancé.


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