About Our Office
We hope that your visits to our office provide a positive impact upon your child’s dental health. It is the goal of the entire team that you feel a comfortable, warm office atmosphere and are served in a caring manner by everyone.
Our Train Theme
Our train theme originated from an interest Dr. Miller’s son, John, developed in trains at 2 years of age. He was so drawn to train models, pictures, sounds, and of course, real trains that Dr. & Mrs. Miller began to decorate his room with a train theme. In time, it became apparent how people of all ages enjoy trains. The office theme idea was the natural progression of events.
In 1993, Dr. & Mrs. Miller attended an auction where the entire contents of a train museum were being sold. Most of the train articles in the office came from that museum. We hope you like trains as much as we do and will "Keep on Track" with your dental health.
Our Dental Team
Our clinical staff is comprised of several dental assistants all trained to provide the most up-to-date treatment available. The entire staff participates in attending courses, lectures, seminars, and in reading literature in order to stay abreast of the many changes occurring in the field.
What We Offer
At the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, we begin seeing children at 1 year of age. We then follow the child until they are grown. Along the way, we offer not only the customary dental care needs (exams, cleanings, fillings) but also surgery and complete orthodontic treatment. Our goal is to provide comprehensive treatment for your child to minimize the inconvenience of having to select several different dentists to satisfy your child’s varying dental needs.
Quality Dental Care
Dr. Miller and his staff are extremely committed to performing only the finest care possible. The best dental materials and techniques are used to provide functional, esthetically pleasing, and long-lasting dental care.
Our Golden Rule Philosophy
At Augusta Pediatric Dentistry we want you and your child to have the finest dental experience possible. You can expect to be served in a warm atmosphere by a caring professional team. We look forward to providing dental care for your family and friends.
Our office is open Monday through Thursday from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Our staff is available on Fridays from 8:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. to assist you with accounting and/or insurance questions, appointment scheduling, and emergencies.
Time is reserved for each patient and we prepare for each procedure in advance of your arrival. By doing this, we decrease your waiting time to a minimum. Please give our office a call 48 hours in advance if an appointment cannot be kept so we may offer that time to another patient. By notifying us 48 hours ahead, we can use the time assigned for your child to help someone else’s child receive quality dental care.
Feel free to call us if you lose your appointment card or need to confirm your scheduled time.
We welcome new patients from 1 to 13 years of age and will continue to see established patients to the age of 21. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that parents arrange their child's first visit with a Pediatric Dentist 3-6 months after the 1st tooth erupts, but no later than the first birthday. This first visit will consist of a brief examination, nutritional advice, oral hygiene instruction, as well as a discussion of how each child can receive the best dental experiences and obtain the best dental benefit possible. Older children and teenagers will receive a thorough dental exam, orthodontic evaluation, cleaning, and instruction on how to optimize their dental health.
Cleanings and exams are recommended every six months. We will make these appointments 6 months in advance. These continuing care visits will be confirmed by mail and phone. We ask for any address or phone number changes in order to provide the best service to our patients and their parents.
The longer appointments (usually operative and orthodontic) are scheduled in the mornings and occasionally in this early afternoon for 3 reasons:
- The patients, Dr. Miller and the staff are at their peak.
- Younger patients have a better experience in the morning.
- Afternoon appointments will be available for more people with shorter appointments. This is especially helpful during the school months.
Orthodontic patients should count on alternating their visits between the morning and the afternoon during the school year; however, more than half the visits should be available after lunch if we continue to have everyone's cooperation.
Changing/canceling appointments may be done at any time up to 48 hours prior to the scheduled appointment. Just give us a call. Someone is usually available to answer your call between 7:30am and 6pm. Should an emergency arise within 48 hours of the appointment, call us immediately. We do have an answering machine for times when we are not in the office. Our staff spends time preparing for each patient's visit. When you arrive at the appointed time and date for the scheduled treatment, we are best able to serve you efficiently. We are not willing to compromise adherence to superb quality, so if you arrive late, we may not be able to complete everything planned; or we may not be able to see your child at all. We feel that you wouldn't want to be kept waiting because a patient ahead of you was late. We do respect your time and don't wish to keep you waiting any longer than planned. When we do occasionally run slightly behind schedule due to an unexpected emergency or change in treatment, we will advise you.
When we schedule appointments, we allow additional time and staff to answer any questions you may have to show and explain to your child what is being done so as to calm any fears or address any concerns. We also allow extra time and staff to answer any questions you may have. We will try to confirm your appointment(s), but please make a special effort to keep up with your appointment(s) in case we are unable to reach you. Feel free to call us if you ever lose your appointment card or wish to confirm your time.
In the event of an emergency, please call our office immediately. Our trained staff will give you instructions depending on the nature of the emergency. Dr. Miller is usually available 24 hours a day to respond to our patients when emergencies occur.
PAYMENT IS DUE AT THE TIME SERVICES ARE RENDERED
There are 4 different payment options. One is to pay the entire bill and let the insurance company reimburse you directly. The second is to allow you to pay the estimated portion your insurance company will not pay when the treatment is performed, and we will wait on the portion insurance is expected to pay. The third is to pay ahead and build up a credit. In any event, cash, checks, money orders, or credit cards (Visa, Master Card, Discover, American Express) are accepted. For our patients who would prefer a payment plan, we offer a no interest or low interest payment plans through CareCredit.
We have a very competent and caring staff who will be happy to help you any way they can. Please give us a call anytime you have a concern, question, or information for us. We truly do want to work together with you to make your child's experience a pleasurable one, and one that is financially reasonable for you.
Statements are sent out around the 22nd of the month. We ask that the amount owed be paid within 30 days. We try not to send statements to those accounts where insurance is all that is owed. During the month, if we receive insurance payment that still leaves a balance owed by you, we will send you a statement at that time. Please be so kind as to send us your payment upon receipt of the statement, as it probably has been several weeks since the treatment was completed.
After 60 days, interest is assessed at 1.5% per month (18% annual percentage rate), including unpaid insurance claims. Please make sure you keep abreast of how your insurance company is handling your claim. You may call us anytime if you need our assistance regarding your claim. Again, we will be happy to accept a credit card to satisfy your bill if that is easier.
If we do not receive payment from you after another 30 days, (a total of 90 days since your child received treatment in this office), we will try to contact you one more time advising you that you may have left us no alternative but to turn your account over to our collection agency. We never want to turn anyone over and ruin their credit rating, and hope that you will find alternative financing immediately. If you still fail to remit payment and we turn over your account to our collection agency, you will be assessed the entire fee they charge us in addition to the 1.5% interest. That can be as much as 55-75% additional on your bill. Should our collection agency take you to court to collect, you will be responsible for all court costs along with the other collection agency costs and finance charges. PLEASE do not put yourself in this situation!
Orthodontic Payment Plans
Orthodontic treatment is financed slightly differently. For those patients with insurance, we will estimate what the insurance company will pay and set up a payment plan for the remainder with 25% down and the remaining balance paid over the anticipated length of treatment. For those with no insurance coverage, we will offer a payment plan of 25% down with the remaining balance paid over the estimated treatment time.
If you prefer, we may bill your credit card each month to satisfy the monthly orthodontics payments. This convenient means of payment is the simplest method we have found. One more option is available; we will offer a 10% accounting write off if you choose to make full payment by cash or check at the beginning of orthodontic treatment.
Regardless of the method of payment, we do require that the entire bill be satisfied by the time we complete treatment. Also, the fee charged is for the treatment, not the estimated length of time. If we under estimate the treatment time, we will not charge any additional fee; conversely, if treatment finishes earlier than expected, the fee will not be reduced. Our computer system automatically posts the agreed upon coupon amount monthly for both you and your insurance company (if applicable) to your account, and these amounts will appear on your statement. As mentioned in the "Statement" section, amounts over 60 days old will be subject to the 1.5% finance charge.
With our highly mobile society, transfers are inevitable. If for any reason you find it necessary to transfer out of the practice, we will be happy to duplicate any current x-rays at no cost to anyone whose account is current. We will be happy to mail them to your next dentist, or have them available for pick up, which ever is more convenient for you. Please do allow three working days for us to prepare your records.
Our staff realizes that your insurance benefits help you and your family obtains the dental care that can provide optimum dental health. Although the parent or patient is responsible for all services rendered, as a courtesy, we will assist you by filing your insurance. Only the estimated non-covered patient portion is paid at the time of treatment. After our office receives all insurance payments, any balance will be refunded or billed. We are providers in the following insurance networks: Ameritas, Cigna, Delta Dental Premier, Metlife and United Concordia. It is suggested that families contact their insurance carrier to verify that we are a participating provider in their network.
If your child needs dental treatment, we will discuss the total treatment fee and provide you with an ESTIMATE of what your insurance company will pay. Please realize that it is only an estimate and we may be off by quite a bit! Sometimes we over estimate what your insurance company will pay, in which case you will owe more; sometimes we under estimate and will be happy to send you a refund check. As a courtesy to you, on the day of service, we expect you only to pay the ESTIMATED difference between the total charges and what we estimate your insurance company will pay, unless of course you wish to pay the entire amount and have the insurance company reimburse you. We accept cash, checks, money orders, Master Card, Visa, Discover, American Express and CareCredit as payment of your portion. Please remember, however, that you, not your insurance company, are responsible for treatment completed and costs incurred in this office.
We will be happy to file your insurance claim(s) for you. It is your responsibility to provide us with complete and accurate information regarding your insurance company, policy number, social security number, etc., and to advise us of any changes, which occur. (Often, insurance companies, addresses and/or phone numbers change. We need to know that immediately if we are to help you with your claim.)
Occasionally we have problems getting insurance companies to pay. We ask that you contact your carrier if you have not received information from them regarding the status of your claim within about 4-5 weeks of your visit. We will be happy to assist you any way we can, but ultimately, the entire balance is your responsibility.