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HEARD ON THE BEAT / HEALTH CARE

Dencharge Boosts Charge Card Marketing

September 30, 1997|Barbara Marsh | Barbara Marsh covers health care for The Times. She can be reached at (714) 966-7762 and at barbara.marsh@latimes.com

Dencharge Corp. is showing the competition its teeth.

Eyeing intensifying competition, the Anaheim company is redoubling efforts to make patients aware of CareCredit--its credit card for dental, chiropractic and even veterinary care.

The company offers its financing through 20,000 practices in those fields across the country. It says it frees practitioners from worries over bill collection by promising to cover patient charges two days after the appointment. It charges practitioners 5% of the bill for receivables the patient pays within 90 days. Its rates go up for overdue bills.

In the last few years, however, the company's dental insurance rivals have stepped up attempts to provide financing to patients for procedures not covered by other insurance, such as teeth whitening, he says.

So, it recently hired a public relations firm and said it is stepping up training for practitioners' office workers and offering a chance at sweepstakes winnings for those workers who make sales targets.

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