Anonymous on BBB
7 years ago
10/09/2015, 09:03 AM
I went to Dental Options in Aventura, FL for a check up and cleaning on June 29, 2015. During that visit, a leaking crown with decay underneath it was found. I was told that the old crown would need to be removed, the decay would need to be dealt with and then a temporary/provisional crown would be put on. Once the new crown would be ready, the new crown would be put on. My complaint is not with the work, but some of the charges which I already paid in full because I was told that if I did not pay the entire bill for the treatment plan, I would not be able to have any of the work done. I felt trapped. I needed to get it done since I had decay. I feel that I was bullied maybe because I am an elderly woman. The charges that I feel are unfair and a rip off are as follows: The provisional crown which is also known as a temporary crown. I have never ever been charged for a temporary crown in my life and everyone I know has never been charged for that. It is something that is made in the office with a little bit of paste. I was charged $225 for that. I feel this is a way for this office to make extra money. You can check with any other dental office and you will see there is no charge for that.The second charge I feel is a rip off is the Porcelain Ziconia for $175. This is just a coating. The crown is already made of porcelain. It was not necessary, but just a way to make extra money. These two charges total $400. This crown is in the very rear of my mouth and does not show.I paid $1010 in total and feel that I really should have been charged $610. That would have been a fair amount for the work done. The two charges I am deeply upset about and feel that I was ripped off and treated unfairly should not exist on my treatment plan.
Product_Or_Service: a dental crown
I would like a refund of $400 for the two items that I should have never been charged for. I already paid for everything in full and I signed the treatment plan because I was pressured and told that I would not be able to have any of the work done if I did not pay in full. I would like a check for $400 mailed to me. I am a senior citizen on a limited income and would like to be treated fairly and not cheated out of $400 which I should have never been charged for.
This complaint from Ms. ********** is full of inconsistencies, misleading comments, and an overall disparagement of the professional services provided. We are not surprised to see her in this forum, because she already filed a complaint with her dental plan administrator and her credit card company. Both denied her complaints and ruled in our favor.
Ms. ********** is incorrect in stating that she could not have the treatment done unless she paid the entire bill in full. She fails to explain the correct sequence of events: she was presented with a treatment plan, which she agreed to and signed, prior to having any services rendered.
Timeline of Events:
- June 29, 2015: Ms. ********** came to our office and our staff presented and explained a treatment plan in full detail for services that needed to be rendered on tooth #31. Ms. ********** signed the treatment plan, agreeing then to the cost of this treatment.
We do not pressure patients to have treatments done. As providers, we educate and inform patients based on what the dentists believe are the necessary treatments. We do not discriminate nor treat patients differently based on their age. Everyone is treated with the utmost respect. Only after they agree and sign the treatment plan, which shows the course of treatment, fees, and overall consent, do we proceed with the dental work.
- July 06, 2015: Ms. ********** returned to have services rendered on tooth #31. Ms. ********** paid in full $1,010.00 by credit card.
- July 21, 2015: Ms. ********** returned for her appointment to have permanent crown #31 delivered.
Approximately one month after services were rendered and paid in full by Ms. **********, she decided to start the following dispute processes:
- July 24, 2014: Ms. **********'s dental plan representative contacted the office to inform us of the complaint the patient had regarding her charges. It was explained to the representative that the provisional was done due to recurring decay and that we had to monitor tooth #31 before final restoration was done. The representative spoke with his supervisor. The charges were ultimately found to be correct.
- August 3, 2015: A dispute summary letter was received from Merchant Services regarding a charge-back transaction. Our response was submitted in writing on August 12, 2015. On August 18, 2015, the charge was revised in our favor.
As indicated above, Ms. ********** has both mischaracterized the chain of events and the value of the services provided.
Ms. ********** is disparaging our services and characterizing the fees charged as "rip-offs." However, we can attest that they are normal fees for the area and agreed upon by the dental plans. Ms. ********** charges were strictly based on her contracted dental plan fee schedule. They were not determined by our office. As providers in-network with any dental plan we are obligated to charge patients based on contracted fee schedules.
Further, Ms. ********** incorrectly states that a provisional crown is "made with a little paste." The provisional crown is made with specific dental materials and hand-sculpted by a trained professional, to protect the tooth from movement, sensitivity, and further decay until the permanent crown is ready. Creating and placing the provisional crown is a critical part of the overall crown procedure. Many dental plans, like the one that Ms. ********** has, have a specific fee for provisional crowns and all offices that work with those dental plans apply the agreed-upon fees. As for Ms. **********'s comment about porcelain Zirconia crowns, she again mischaracterizes the importance of the materials used for her treatment. A porcelain Zirconia crown is not "just a coating," it is a professionally-made crown by a certified dental laboratory with state-of-the-art equipment. Zirconia is one of the best and most durable crowns that exist in the market.
In conclusion, for all the points explained above, the refund requested by Ms. ********** has no merit.
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
There is no dental office that charges for a temporary/provisional crown. That is outrageous. It is an unnecessary charge. I will let the Zirconia go in order to meet the dental office half way because I am a good person, but they should refund me for the provisional crown. No one should ever charge for that. I have had many temporary crowns from different dentists in Florida and Colorado and have never been charged for it. That is a way to make extra money by padding the bills. It is a critical part of the procedure but it should not be charged for. I do not accept the response. They are making me look bad and I'm not. I only want to be treated fairly and not overcharged. I asked if I could pay half and half later and was told I had to pay in full if I wanted work done. I have seen bills from dental labs for crowns and they are between $100 and $200. The dental office is making a huge profit on those crowns. Yes, I did try with my credit card company but they did not have me fill out a form in my own words and that is why it did not work. They need to refund me for the provisional crown. No one charges for that, ever.
Final Business Response
Ms. ********** is incorrect, in particular by stating "there is no dental office that charges for a temporary/provisional crown", on the contrary, at a minimum all offices that accept her dental plan would do so.
Moreover, all fees charged to Ms. ********** were calculated according to her dental plan and upon her request later reviewed and re-validated (approved) by her dental plan administrator.
Considering all facts, sequence of events, her dental plan determination in our favor and the key point that all procedures and fees charged to Ms. ********** are normal and customary, her request for any refund has no merit.
However, in order to keep Ms. ********** in good terms, we are crediting her account in the amount of $100 as a courtesy and token of good will. Ms. ********** may request at anytime (in person or over the phone) this $100 to be refunded to her credit card or leave it in her account to be applied for future treatments.
Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
At least, I would appreciated it if you would refund $200 to my credit card. Not $100. Thank you.