Hopefully you are running and looking at reports from your Practice Management Software regularly. But is the report you are looking at the correct report and how accurate is the data included in the report?
Let's take the Aged Receivables report to start. This report should show you patients that owe money to your practice and it breaks it out into Current, 30 Days, 60 Days, 90 Days and total AR. In order to get the most accurate numbers you want to view/print the report so it excludes patients with credit balances.
Another report to look carefully at is the New Patient report. Are you truly looking at "New Patients" for the month or are you looking at a report of how many "new" patients were entered into the system? A true New Patient does not count until they have come in for their appointment and had a procedure/exam done. Be on the lookout for duplicate names as well. Some offices have people entered as patients when they are actually only the insurance subscriber or guarantor.
Uncompleted or outstanding treatment is another report that can have skewed totals. When was the last time you looked at this report? Almost every time we go into an office and review the report, we are told, "That report is not accurate". Why isn't it accurate? There are many duplicate procedures posted to patients, there are patients who have already had the treatment rendered or had a different treatment on the tooth and the treatment plan hadn't been cleaned up. There are also treatment plans that have been sitting as "active" for 5-10 years when the patient has not been in the practice. Those procedures should be marked "rejected" in the treatment plan so they don't show up on your active treatment report. This report should be looked at and "cleaned up" regularly (at least quarterly). In addition, this is a great report to pull from when you are looking to fill your schedule. Remember, it's much less costly to "reactivate" an existing patient than it is to attract and convert a new patient.
The clinical team should be reviewing the Provider History report at the end of each day to ensure procedures were posted to the correct providers and the correct procedures were posted to the correct patient.
Finally, the Adjustment Report should be looked at daily to ensure the proper adjustments are being made. Notes should be made in the adjustment as to the reason for the adjustment (ex: 50% courtesy, patient is friend of Dr. Smith).
Minor mistakes are almost unavoidable in the busyness of the dental practice, but if you have a system in place to check regularly these situations should never get too far out of hand. You can always call your Practice Management Software's customer support for assistance in printing the correct report and you can always call Amy Smith Consulting for questions regarding systems for running, reading and cleaning up reports.