The Rights of Patients and Clients at a Dental Care Clinic

A Robina Dental care clinic is a facility where all of your oral health needs can be met under one roof. Usually, they have both general dentists and specialists available to help you.

It is a convenient option and can save time if you have a busy schedule. It also offers free or low-cost care for patients without insurance.

Patient’s Right to Complaints

In every dental care clinic there should be a personalised complaints procedure that is readily available for patients to use, and staff should be trained in how to manage a complaint. This will ensure that a patient is approached in a professional manner and handled seamlessly from the first contact.

A personalised complaints procedure should outline time limits for the response, and should include all possible options for resolution. Providing an honest and constructive response to a patient’s complaint will go a long way in rebuilding the trust between a practice and its patients.

The patient’s right to complain about their dental care is a fundamental aspect of the Standards and should be respected at all times. If a complaint is received, a follow-up meeting should be organised to discuss the issue and to provide an action plan going forward. This may involve re-doing the treatment, suggesting to seek treatment with another member of staff, refunding the patient and so forth.

Patient’s Right to Representation

Patients have a right to representation at their dental care clinic. This includes access to information and education, the ability to file complaints and grievances about service-related issues or treatment, and representation in the formulation of rules and regulations that govern you as a patient/client.

Patients also have a right to confidentiality. This is particularly true of medical and dental records. They should be secured from unauthorized access, use or disclosure, and stored in a secure environment.

It is unprofessional to reveal personally identifiable facts, data or information obtained in a professional capacity without the prior consent of the patient or client. Similarly, it is a good idea to ensure that billing statements and insurance claims are concise, clear, direct and accurate.

The best way to protect yourself from fee disputes is to explain to your patients at the outset of the evaluation and treatment process all costs involved, including co-payments and expenses not covered by insurance. In addition, it is a good idea to have a signed agreement in place between the dentist and the patient regarding the responsibilities and limitations of insurance coverage.

Patient’s Right to Information

Patients have a right to information regarding their health, medical and dental histories, examination findings, and treatment options. They also have a right to refuse treatment or ask for alternatives.

In order to maintain the confidentiality of patient records, dentists should obtain the consent of patients before forwarding their records to other parties. They should also ensure that the records they provide are accurate, complete and up-to-date.

A dental care clinic should also offer language interpretation, translation services and other vision, hearing and cognitive aids as necessary to help patients understand their information. They should make sure that information provided is tailored to the patient’s preferred language, age and in terms that they can understand.

The dental care clinic should also encourage patients to follow the recommendations of their dentist and dental hygienist. This includes keeping their appointments, following pre- and post-operative instructions and adhering to home oral hygiene recommendations. It should also be aware of any financial obligations that the patient has for dental care and assure that these are met.

Patient’s Right to Referrals

The patient’s right to referrals is a significant issue in a dental care clinic. Patients may need to be referred for treatment due to a range of reasons, including a lack of expertise or experience.

As a dentist, your role is to be sensitive and compassionate in cases where you believe that another provider would be better suited to delivering treatment. The patient’s oral health and well-being always come first.

In these instances, you should discuss your concerns with the patient and their primary care physician (PCP) or an approved covering physician. Your concern should be shared in a non-accusatory way, and you should explain the reason why you feel that a referral is required.

There are a number of strategies to improve the specialty-referral process. These strategies include managed care’s “gatekeeper” authorization, bundled payments, and referral guidelines. These have been shown to improve access to specialist care and reduce cost.