Industry Insider

Making Collections Easier

Marla Merritt

Marla Merritt is the director of marketing for OrthoBanc LLC. She has 20 years of experience in credit reporting and payment management.

OP: What service does your company provide to orthodontists?

Merritt: OrthoBanc provides risk analysis and payment management. Patient payments are electronically drafted from the patient’s checking, savings, or credit card account. OrthoBanc also handles all patient contacts regarding failed payments, expired credit cards, and balance inquiries. OrthoBanc’s services are integrated with practice-management software companies that make it easy to set up accounts and post monthly payments. OrthoBanc currently integrates with Advanced Ortho Systems, Dolphin Management, IMS, Ortho II, and topsXtreme. OrthoBanc also offers online single payments through TeleVox’s T.LINK.

OP: Do you have any new services that orthodontists should know about?

Merritt: OrthoBanc just introduced credit-bureau reporting and collection-service integration. This is something our customers have been asking about for a while, so we’re very pleased to meet their needs.

OP: How does the collection-service integration work?

Merritt: Practices select from three different levels of collection services, and the collection activity is performed by a reputable third-party collection agency. If accounts are not paid within 30 days, they are reported to all three major credit bureaus. Accounts are set up through the OrthoBanc Web site.

For less than the monthly cost of a single credit bureau membership, orthodontists can report accounts and have them collected. OrthoBanc charges a $30 monthly fee, which covers the integration with the agency, turning the accounts over for collection, the detailed reporting of collection activity, and reporting the accounts to the three credit bureaus.

OP: How does this benefit an orthodontic practice?

Merritt: The OrthoBanc service encourages swift payment through demand letters from a collection agency. Credit-bureau reporting is also very important, because consumers know the importance of protecting their credit and FICO score. OrthoBanc offers discounted collection rates to its customers.

It’s All in the System

Oliver Gelles

Oliver Gelles is the director of global marketing for Ormco Corp. He has been with the company for 4 years.

OP: What product of yours is most popular with orthodontists?

Gelles: Our most popular product is the Damon® passive self-ligation system. More than 2 million patients have been treated with the Damon system since its launch 10 years ago.

The Damon system is not just a bracket—it’s an entire system that combines passive, self-ligating brackets with high-tech archwires and a minimally invasive treatment philosophy. All three work together as one low-friction system that is clinically proven to reduce treatment times, improve patient comfort, and provide results with fewer extractions and without RPEs. A growing number of adults are turning to the Damon system as their new antiaging weapon. The Damon system provides a fuller smile, strengthened midface support, reduced smile lines, and a youthful profile. Many orthodontists are now calling it the Damon System Bracelift™.

OP: What are some of the features of the STb™ Light Lingual System?

Gelles: The STb™ Light Lingual System is a simplified approach to lingual treatment, providing faster treatment and greater patient comfort for all levels of cases. STb uses a passive self-ligating design that provides reduced friction and accelerated treatment. Its 1.5-mm bracket profile and rounded contours are clinically proven to reduce lingual interference and minimize speech issues. The STb system is also easy to learn and use—cases can be prepared with a standard indirect setup in-office or by an AOA Lab. In most cases, STb does not require a full TARG or CLASS setup. The STb Light Lingual system is applicable to all levels of cases.

OP: What sort of educational support does Ormco offer?

Gelles: Ormco offers an extensive educational and practice-development program for doctors and staff around the world. Some of the topics covered include passive self-ligation (the Damon system), computer-assisted custom orthodontics (Insignia™), and miniscrew anchorage (VectorTAS).

One of our most popular events is the annual Damon Forum. The next event will be held January 23 to 26, 2008, in Phoenix, where more than 20 workshops will be held. Some of the topics that will be covered at the Forum include temporary anchorage, digital treatment planning, soft- and hard-tissue contouring, and practice-enhancement and marketing strategies.