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O.C. BUSINESS PLUS | HEARD ON THE BEAT / BIOTECHNOLOGY

Dentalxchange.com Trying Out New Service

October 03, 2000|MARC BALLON

Dentalxchange.com Inc., an online dental Web site in Irvine, has introduced a service it says will make dentists and insurers lives a little easier.

The system, called PayerConnect, allows dentists and insurance companies to communicate over the Net, the company said. With PayerConnect, dentists can submit claims, verify patients' eligibility and check benefits, said Billie Waldo, Dentalxchange vice president of marketing.

PacifiCare Dental and Vision, which is using PayerConnect, expects to save on paper and postage costs, among other things, said Dr. Lee Harris, a vice president. Instead of having to mail hundreds of books and patient rosters to dentists in its network, PacifiCare can post that information online, Harris said.

PayerConnect is being tested in 29 dentist offices in California, and eight insurance companies have agreed to participate, Waldo said. Dentists and insurers will pay monthly for the service, but the fee has yet to be determined.

Dentalxchange offers several other online services to dentists, including free industry news, continuing education courses and 35,000 products for sale. It also builds and develops Web sites for dentists and can manage their payrolls, scheduling and accounting.

In August, venture capitalists Whitney & Co. and Bessemer Venture Partners poured $16 million into the 5-year-old company.

Dentalxchange has 140 employees in Orange County and posted revenues last year of $1 million. The company lost money last year and expects to be in the red in 2000, Waldo said.

Marc Ballon covers the biomedical and biotechnology industry for The Times. He can be reached at (714) 966-7439 and at marc.ballon@latimes.com.

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