Steps to Success
Most medical doctors want to focus their energy on medicine’s actual practice and the quality of care their patients are receiving. Still, a critical component of a successful medical practice is billing and collections. Efficient medical billing practices are essential for continued revenue, and having an understanding of effective collection measures will save you time and money in the long run. To ensure you are doing all you can for continued revenue, here are some steps you should take:
Take The Lead
Take the lead on your billing procedures and practices to fully understand how your system works. In doing so, you can ensure your staff is adequately trained and best equipped to avoid errors that can lead to uncollected balances and unnecessary staff resources being used to correct mistakes and re-submit claims. Many medical doctors rely on staff to educate them on how the billing process works and what is necessary for a claim to be submitted and paid. But why put one of the most critical components of your practice in your staff’s hands to make the decisions that impact your revenue? Instead, take the lead and educate yourself about the process at the beginning so that your billing staff and team are appropriately trained and knowledgable, then pass the reigns off for someone to lead but continue to keep you updated and informed on all changes and challenges.
Coordinate With Your Team
Have staff meetings regularly to discuss and implement changes needed to make billing as efficient as possible. Each time a claim is denied will cause more time and money be spent to correct any errors. While some mistakes are expected, making sure your billing team’s issues are addressed and resolved will give you a productive team.
Keep Customer Service In Focus
Customer Service goes a long way! Remember that you are in the service industry. As important as it is that you have a bedside manner with your patients, it is equally essential that all of your staff, including the billing department, learn the craft of customer service to resolve disputes and issues professionally and respectfully. You can’t always please everyone, but you can demand that your staff remain respectful and accountable in their dealings with your patients, especially when submitting payments for services rendered.
Be proactive and forthcoming with your patients about any payments that they can anticipate having to make. Submit claims for preapproval and authorization to the insurance provider to determine how much the patient will be responsible for paying. Then contact the patient ahead of time, notify them of the costs, and have options to remit payment. In doing so, you can avoid patients accruing a large balance due and having no means to pay it. Giving patients the information upfront can allow them to plan and have the financial resources ready to remit payment. You can cut down on high unpaid balance accounts by taking this step. In doing so, you are keeping your revenue consistent and taking steps to help your staff avoid spending time following up with patients to obtain payment.
Develop an Error-Handling Process
Develop a flow chart that details out what steps staff are to take when claims are denied. Likewise, have a system in place for tracing errors to correct mistakes and stop repetitive errors from consistently happening each billing cycle. Address and coding errors that are causing claims to be denied, establish a billing procedure and timeline for when invoices are sent out consistently, and set up a system for how you will handle unpaid balances after a specific time frame. Adding interest or late fees can be one mechanism. Setting up a day when your staff calls the patients regarding their unpaid balances can also be extremely beneficial to collect.
Keep an Open Mind
Technology can be your friend, but it can also be your foe. While technology has come a far way and greatly assists medical billing, it can also be a foe because things are always changing and needing updating. Be open to changes and anything that can make your billing and collections process more smooth lined and have a continued communication source between you, your staff, and your patients.
Taking these steps to establish better medical billing and collections strategies will ensure you are doing all you can to have continued revenue and a successful medical business practice.
To find out how the collections attorneys and team at Andalman and Flynn, P.C. can help you, please visit Andalman and Flynn Collections.
Contact Amanda Vann at 301-563-6685.
About Andalman & Flynn Collections: For decades, businesses and professionals have been turning to the experienced collections attorneys at Andalman & Flynn for their debt recovery needs. A licensed collections agency, their experienced team successfully navigates the complex laws surrounding debt collection practices. The firm combines cutting-edge technology with savvy, effective debt resolution methods that result in high success rates and fast recovery times. For more information, please visit www.andalmanflynncollections.com.