As we head into the last few months of 2015, and as your patients begin to make their holiday shopping lists, now is the perfect time to remind them of another gift for themselves or their families that they’ve already paid for – dental insurance and/or a Flexible Spending Account (FSA).
As you know, but they may forget, any dollars that remain in either of these two types of accounts must be used by the end of the year or they will disappear at the stroke of midnight on December 31st.* A letter or email reminding them of this is an excellent way to encourage them to book a dental appointment before the end of the year. If you would like to use any of the following content in your correspondence with them, please feel free to do so.
Dear [Patient Name],
We are reaching out to you today to encourage you to contact our office to schedule an appointment before the end of the year if, like many of our patients do, you have unused dental benefits, or a balance in your Flexible Spending Account. As you may know, you must use those funds by the end of the year, or lose them.
Dental benefits renew each year on January 1st, but do not accumulate from year to year*, so if your plan pays $1,500 per year, and you’ve used only $1,000 of that benefit so far in 2015, you will lose $500 on December 31st. The same is true of FSA’s. While some plans allow you to make claims against your account for up to two and a half months after the end of the benefit year, in general this no-carryover rule results in many people forfeiting sometimes sizable amounts of FSA money. Please don’t let happen to you or your family.
Your dental benefits or FSA funds can be used for a long list of dental procedures, including routine procedures such as teeth cleaning, fluoride treatments, x-rays and sealants. Also for more extensive procedures such as:
- restorative work
- nightguard or occlusal guards
Because some of these procedures can be costly, making sure you do not lose money that could be used to pay, or help pay, for them is important. Additionally, you can use these funds to cover not only the needed treatment, but to pay the small extra cost for the Dental Warranty coverage we offer all our patients, which protects your cosmetic and restorative dentistry with nationwide, no-fault protection.
Beyond the lost dollars, leaving money in your FSA or dental benefit account has another, even more important potential cost, and one that is very important to everyone in our practice – your overall health. If you do need treatment we have recommended, or we diagnose at this visit, the longer you wait to complete it the greater chance you take with a long list of possible health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s, and others.
So don’t delay, please call our office today. Your dental health is important to us, which is why we hope you add “Make an appointment with [Dr. Name’s] office” to your holiday ‘to do’ list today!
*Some FSA accounts allow an employee to carry over up to $500 into the following year without losing funds.