How the No Surprises Act could affect dentists

The American Dental Association offered guidance on how the recently enacted No Surprises Act could affect dental practices.

The No Surprises Act went into effect Jan. 1 and protects patients from surprise medical bills after receiving emergency care, nonemergency care from out-of-network providers at in-network facilities and air ambulance services from out-of-network providers. 

The ADA provided more information March 30 about how the law will affect dental practices using guidance provided by CMS.

The dental agency said the new law largely does not affect private dental practices because dental benefits are considered an exception to the law. However, the ADA said certain dental services could be affected if it falls under one of the service categories the law applies to, such as those provided in hospitals and ambulatory centers. 

The ADA also noted that good faith estimates are required within three business days for uninsured patients who request the estimate or schedule a service at a private dental practice. They are not required for items or services scheduled or requested fewer than three days in advance or for emergency services. In a situation in which a patient is undergoing treatment and there is no time to create a new good faith estimate, the ADA said the good faith estimate must include a disclaimer stating the estimate is only for items or services reasonably expected to be furnished at the time the good faith estimate was issued.

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