I suggest that gov't medical facilities have patients hand-carry their radiographs to the provider. (explanation follows)
BY STEPHEN LAPOLLA
All military branches and possibly other agencies.
1) PRESENT METHOD: It is customary practice, upon referral of a patient to a
civilian dental specialist, to authorize payment through Active Duty Dental Program
for radiographs taken at their office.
(2) PROPOSED METHOD: In most cases the same radiograph is on file at the Dental
Treatment Facility (DTF). I propose providing a copy of the radiograph to the
patient who then hand-carries it to the provider.
(3) EXPECTED BENEFITS: This practice will expedite the treatment process, avoid
additional exposure to the patient, and provide substantial monetary savings by not
requiring payment for these services. I estimate a savings of more than $800,000
per year if practiced Air Force-wide.
Actual Radiograph Referrals Authorized by Vandenberg AFB Dental Treatment Facility
From 5 August 2009 through 15 October 2009 (Approx. 50 business days)
PA (first) 40 @ $30 ea.=$1,200 plus PA (additonal) 25 @$24 ea.=$600 plus Panoramic 11 @$102 ea.=$1,122.
Total Cost - $2,922 / 50 days = $58.50 per day.
Multiply 250 business days per year x $58.50 (savings per day) = $14,625 (savings
There are currently approximately 58 USAF CONUS Dental Treatment Facilities.
$14,625 x 58 CONUS DTF’S =$848,250 annually