Skip to main content

Featured News

June 6 Town Hall

Join us Monday, June 6, at 7:00 pm, for an update discussing legislative initiatives, including midlevel providers, and policies. Questions are encouraged. Submit questions in advance here.

Upcoming Webinar

Join us on June 15 for the MDS webinar Dental Implants. This webinar, presented by Dr. Erin Breen, will discuss implant therapy, a common treatment for the replacement of teeth.

Learn More

Midlevel Dental Providers

After years of monitoring the issue and months of considering the impact of the policy, the MDS Board of Trustees has voted to oppose the creation of midlevel dental providers in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Learn More
Dental Practice Insights logo

Dental Practice Insights

The MDS Dental Practice and Benefits Committee encourages all dentists to carefully review insurance contracts before signing them. There may be content in the agreement you do not understand that can significantly impact your practice. For example, some PPO and insurance contracts include an affiliated carrier's clause. This clause makes the dentist a participating provider for an affiliated plan. In short, it is a provision that allows them to 'lease' their network to another program or third-party administrator, meaning you will be reimbursed at the participating provider rate for the leased Plan and face restrictions against balance billing the patient. Also, an insurance carrier can simply notify you that you are being leased with a postcard or email, so check your junk mail every so often as well.

To prevent being caught off guard, the ADA suggests asking these critical questions before signing an agreement with an affiliated carrier's clause:
  • What fee schedule will be in effect?
  • What processing policies will be utilized?
  • How will you be notified when your name is leased to another plan?
  • Will you have the option to opt out of participation with a specific plan?

Example of how the language may read in the contract:

  • The dentist agrees to participate in the Plan and any other plan or program for which [Insurance Company] has agreed to provide access to the Plan.

Instead, opt for language similar to this:

  • Before establishing such third-party arrangements, the insurance company must notify the dentist in writing and allow the dentist to opt out before the agreement becomes effective.

Need help? The ADA Contract Analysis Service can provide member dentists with information concerning a proposed unsigned contract, so you can better understand and analyze its terms. The service is free for member dentists who request a review through the Massachusetts Dental Society

Send your unsigned contract via email to include the subject line Contract Review Request.
View Previous Tips