04 Apr Discounts for dental services causing accusations of deception in your practice?
If the practice fees are calculated professionally for the geographical area and the service charges are within the 80th percentile, the practice will have a small margin for discounts before it eats into the profit margin. Giving discounts in general is not a good idea because giving discounts to separate groups or certain people without giving discounts to others can be viewed as discrimination. It appears as deception when one person gets a discount that another person should get also.
Many patients, especially senior citizens, and some cultures expect a discount for services rendered. Some cultures believe that everything is negotiable and has nothing to do whether your fees are high or low for the area. Seniors traditionally retired at about 62 years of age and then were on fixed incomes. That is not the case now as about 20 to 30% of the population between 62 and 70 years of age are still working.
Set your fees based on a professional fee analysis and explain to patients that: “We had our fees professionally analyzed to ensure that they were considered fair and reasonable for the area. The analysis revealed our fees to be not the highest or the lowest in the area but certainly fair for the services that we offer”
The only fair discount would be an offer of 5% off the total amount over 500.00 if the entire amount is paid in cash at the time of service.