There is a direct connection between efficient doctor’s appointments and successful payment collections. While proper medical billing practices are important, patient payment collections can only be optimized when the entire business is cohesively aligned.
The Big Picture
Since every phase of the care process is related to finances, much more needs to be done to improved patient payment collections than just changes to medical billing. A disorganized billing department is likely evidence of disorganization on a larger scale. After all, there are many things that the billing department cannot prevent because those tasks are under the responsibility of someone else. Simply focusing on payment collection will set your practice up for failure.
Patient Satisfaction Matters
In all areas of business, people are more enthusiastic about paying for services when they are happy with the end results. This is true from the automotive industry, food-service industry to the healthcare industry. This is also the case when individuals donate to charities. People want to give to causes they believe to be worthwhile.
Although healthcare is uniquely personal, delivering a “product” that is of poor quality will make people less than enthusiastic about paying for the services they received. There are a lot of reasons that patients may drag their feet when it comes to paying medical bills beyond financial stressors.
The patient may have had an unfriendly receptionist interaction, waited too long for an appointment, felt rushed or not listened to while with the doctor, or perceived a lack of transparency as to what their costs would be. If patients become dissatisfied, they may seek out a different healthcare provider and leave you to deal with their outstanding balance.
Efficient doctor’s appointments require many moving parts, from paperwork, the gathering of insurance information, to the visit itself and check-out. It’s important to regularly evaluate how all these processes are working to target weak spots. Collecting regular input from patients about their experiences is vital, as well.
6 Strategies To Improve Physician Billing Processes [DOWNLOAD INFOGRAPHIC]
More Visits May Not Mean More Revenue
More visits do not necessarily mean more revenue. It is the quality of those visits that should become your practice’s main concern. If basic things are missed such as patient signatures, this could significantly hold up the payment process.
When practices focus on running as many patients through the system as possible, more mistakes in all areas inevitably will be made. There may even be times when accepting new patients is not wise for your practice. It’s all about striking a good balance to ensure all patients are happy and no money is lost in the process.
Regardless of a person’s profession, it’s disheartening to not get paid for your services. By focusing on efficient doctor’s appointments and patient satisfaction, you will ensure that this becomes an increasingly infrequent problem.