Top 6 tips for managing UDAs

Top 6 tips for managing UDAs

Managing UDAs

For any NHS or mixed dental practice, managing UDAs is a constant concern. UDAs (units of dental activity) are the ‘currency’ that the NHS uses to pay dentists and practices, so it is vital that they are recorded, reported and accounted for correctly.

We believe that Pearl is the best system available for managing UDAs. We have several happy customers that have discovered how much more accurate it is than systems they had previously used. But even though it is accurate and easy to use, we still get calls to the help desk about UDA management and reporting.

So here are our top 6 tips for managing UDAs

1. Make sure you use Pearl Dental Software (or an earlier member of the Pearl family). We have seen many examples of software (usually from the USA) that simply doesn’t offer the facilities to automate the UDA management process. And even the ‘big two’ are often more difficult to set-up and use than Pearl.

2. Treat your UDAs like money and adopt accountancy principles in their management. It is all too easy to fall into the trap of watching UDAs accrue through the year without thinking about the rate at which you need to complete them. Set monthly targets and use Pearl’s reporting facilities to track where you are in your Year-to-Date performance.

3. As an extension of point 2, don’t forget that dentists are humans. They fall sick, and they do seem to enjoy two weeks skiing in the Tirol during February. So make an allowance within the target rate for lost time. Build-in known holidays, adjusting target rates as necessary as they are booked. The same applies to training courses and study leave. Don’t just leave it to a mad panic in March.

4. As a practice manager or principal dentist, it should be your job to pro-actively ensure that everyone within the practice knows how to use Pearl to best effect. That includes completing all payments on time, online within the system. Ensure they also correct errors immediately because reconciling these only gets harder with time if they are left.

5. Make sure you take full advantage of Pearl’s ‘Practice UDA Counter’ report. This shows your Year-to-Date performance. It also highlights UDAs that are unsigned for, late forms and mismatch errors. Completing these ‘open’ UDAs can often mean the difference between hitting the target and missing it.

6. Involve reception in performance planning. Make sure they understand how to prioritise patients to ensure treatment plans are completed by the end of March (end of the reporting cycle). Filling a dentist’s book in March with examinations could leave many treatment plans open. No UDAs will be earned on those examinations until the treatment plan is completed.

If you have technical issues with reporting UDAs, or if you need further advice please get in touch. But be aware, even replacing your old system with Pearl might be too late to solve your current year’s reporting problems if you leave it to March.

To discuss your UDA reporting requirements or any aspect of UDA reporting, call us on 0116 275 9995.

Charlotte Taylor