In an effort to save money, companies and individuals are increasingly purchasing health insurance plans with lower premiums and higher deductibles. According to a recent study done by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research & Educational Trust, about 27% of covered workers have a deductible of at least $1,000 for single coverage, and a greater proportion of workers are enrolled in high-deductible health plans with a savings option as compared to the year 2009. This dynamic is changing the landscape of the revenue cycle management in the “health-care world”, as we know it. And while this change seems to speak directly to an office providing medical services, I believe that the application can be applied to dental and other health-care services as well. The fact that patients are going to be paying a larger percentage of their out-of-pocket costs rings true for all health-care disciplines.
To maintain a handle on the accounts receivable and increase the speed at which payment for services are recovered, providers of care will need to enhance their collection efforts and systems. In 2006, I prepared a summary for you entitled Effective Management of Accounts Receivable – (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3). Given today’s trends that we have noted in clients’ total accounts receivable and percentages of balances over 90 days old, I would encourage you to review this three part summary with your staff as a “check-up”, of sorts, on your current process of managing your collections. Additionally, I continue to look for tools that you can use to enhance your payment cycle. This month I would like to highlight and provide you with some information on one such tool, that I recently came across and of which you may find helpful for your practice.
Payment Clinic – The place where patients pay medical bills…
Payment Clinic is a leader in flexible patient-pay technology solutions, helping patients, hospitals, and Doctors work together to get patient balances paid. Why send a patient to collections before offering the option and flexibility of paying for your service on-line and resolve the balance due. Here’s how Payment Clinic works:
- Thru your billing statements and staff, patients learn that they can pay their bill for your services using Payment Clinic.
- Patients use the website to review if they are eligible for any discounts on their bill, which are based upon parameters that you establish and are maintained by Payment Clinic.
- Patients pay their bill they received from you on payment clinic by placing a “paid in full” amount on the system. If the patient’s offer is accepted based upon your criteria, you get paid. Patients save time, hassle and money (when eligible) off their bill because they agree to pay you sooner using Payment Clinic.
With no up-front costs to the practice, and no software to maintain, Payment Clinic is an option worth looking at as an additional way for medical and dental practices to efficiently manage their accounts receivable. If you would like to explore this service further to implement into your practice, send me an e-mail.requesting additional detailed information.