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Going Contactless for Payments

Hand holding cell phone near contactless payment machine
Dental Practice Success logo

As dental offices adjust to COVID-19 realities, one area to minimize physical contact with patients is in the payment process.

Use what you have

Did you know that most credit card terminals that accept EMV chip cards also probably accept contactless payments? Contactless cards and cards saved via smartphone digital wallets (Apple Pay for example) are an option that most practices may not even know that they can accept. Look for a contactless symbol on your equipment. Note that while your terminal may be capable, your processor may need to update the device software to turn on the capability.

Contactless card payments start like normal transactions but will allow patients to hover their card or smartphone near the card reader rather than physically touching the device. Money will change hands without actually touching hands. You might even consider eliminating having patients sign the receipt. Mastercard and Visa no longer mandate this step. However, a signed receipt provides protection for you in the event of a chargeback (a charge disputed by the cardholder); being able to produce a signed receipt for the transaction will always go a long way to answering any such complaint! Therefore, you must weigh the relative risks and benefits for your practice.

Other contactless payment options can include peer-to-peer payment service apps that connect to a user’s bank account or credit card, like Apple Pay Cash, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, PayPal and Zelle. 

Accept payments securely on your website

Taking payments securely through your website can be easy and inexpensive. An online system gives every office a secure way to accept payments without any buildout cost or secure payment hosting fees. Best of all, using those secure payment pages can also extend to emailed invoices. Those same systems also usually allow for recurring payments if you offer patients payment plans.

About the author 

Professional headshot image for author Phil NietoMr. Nieto is President of Best Card Team, the ADA Member Advantage-endorsed credit card processing solution. ADA members can submit a recent credit card processing statement to get a free analysis from Best Card on how much they might be able to save by switching to the platform by fax at 1-866-717-7247 or email to For more information, call Best Card at 1-877-739-3952.