One of the biggest changes to otolaryngology billing and coding, is the fact that patients today now have higher co-pays and deductibles than ever before. As payments that come directly from the patients continue to grow, it is important to work hard to improve account management and implement new policies that will help you to stay on top of these payments. Unfortunately, many practices have had to put a lot of time and effort into improving patient collections in order to keep the business end of their practice in the black.
However, there are things that you can do today to increase patient payments and make improvements that will boost your Medicare reimbursement, as well as payments from insurance companies. You can also receive online coding help and support for your billing department through healthcare consulting companies like MD Pro Solutions. We specialize in otolaryngology and can help you fine tune your policies and procedures to improve account management and collections across the board.
Step One – Collect 100 Percent of All Co-Pays and Deductibles
Making changes to your office policy about collecting every single co-pay and deductible when you see the patients in your office can really help. Most ENT practices already have a co-pay before service policy, but deductibles can really get out of hand if you don’t collect those right away as well. Make sure to advise patients of your change in policy for otolaryngology billing and coding by sending out notices, posting the change on your website and putting up signs in the office.
Step Two – Be Prepared
The best way to be able to increase collections each and every day is to be prepared. Take time to check the insurance eligibility for every patient before they come in for a visit. Double check things like co-pays and deductibles to make sure everything is accurate, active and up-to-date. This will improve collections and help you ensure accuracy for increased insurance payer, Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements. Again, make sure patients know that all co-pays, deductibles and balances are due before they can be seen to avoid any problems in the front office.
Step Three – Send Statements
A lot of practices don’t keep up with their aging buckets. Bills that are 0-30 days past due, 31-60 days past due, and 61-90 days past due should all be handled differently. Statements to patients should be mailed out weekly to increase collections. The first statement should say DUE NOW to get their attention, while the subsequent statements should say PAST DUE. Phone calls and other final notices can be given in the future, providing patients with a final 15-day period to pay their balance before it is sent to collections.
Step Four – Increase Payment Options
You can’t expect to boost collections for otolaryngology billing and coding or improve account management if you don’t allow patients more options for paying their bills. Always accept cash and checks, but also make sure that you accept debit cards and credit cards too. You can also add the ability to make online or mobile payments via the company website. Your patients will appreciate your effort to make this part of the process more convenient.
Step Five – Provide Training for Staff
Making the transition from friendly customer service and appointment setting to collections can be difficult for some employees. Healthcare consulting firms, such as MD Pro Solutions, can work with your staff to provide online coding help and support. This will help boost payments from insurance payers and Medicaid or Medicare reimbursement, but you also need coaching and support to improve account management and collections. Also consider separating your customer service and medical staff from your collections department or outsourcing otolaryngology billing and coding services and collections to third-party services.
Get Support at MD Pro Solutions
Whether your team just need some online coding help and support to make improvements to your billing and collections department, or if they could use some training and education to get them on track, MD Pro Solutions can help. We specialize in otolaryngology billing and coding, plus we have an extensive program for training, support, and even temporary or long-term outsourcing. Our team can help your team increase insurance payer and Medicare reimbursement, as well as boost collections from patients. Call today at 508-946-1665 to learn more about our services or to schedule a FREE consultation for your ENT practice.