Healthcare facilities need the right billing practices in place for two main reasons. First, to comply with state and federal laws related to claims filed with government-sponsored healthcare program. When it comes to those claims, they must be properly coded and billed. Your facility must have the proper authorization from the government program. Otherwise, your claim could be denied, you won’t get paid, and you and your facility could face serious federal charges (even if you weren’t the one responsible for the ICD coding). Second, healthcare facilities need the right billing practices to help speed up payments from patients and private industry health insurance companies. In this post, we’re going to discuss 5 billing insights you should know.
Proper Billing Starts at Check-In
The ability of your healthcare practice to properly bill for the treatment provided begins the moment that patients check-in. Your receptionist should ensure that:
- Any changes to health insurance are captured and immediately entered into your system.
- Any changes to personal and contact information are captured and immediately entered into your system.
- Co-payments or payments for cash payments should be collected at the time of check-in. If the patient doesn’t have the co-payment or payment for their appointment, you should have written guidelines in place on how the situation is handled. Options may include rescheduling or the patient discussing their situation with the billing or office manager.
Ensure Billing Staff Are Using the Most Updated ICD Codes
Whether you have a medical coding and billing clerk who works out of your office or outsource it, the ultimate responsibility on the accuracy of the codes used is on your shoulders. To protect the integrity of your healthcare practice, you must ensure that the most updated ICD codes are used.
Embrace Electronic Filing of Health Insurance Claims
If your healthcare facility hasn’t done so already, it should embrace electronic filing of health insurance claims. Why? It’s faster and it is less expensive for your practice.
Stay on Top of Monthly Billing and Collections
Some patients may be on a monthly payment plan to pay for their treatment. It’s important for your healthcare practice and for the patient that you stay on top of billing. Patients should know when to expect their invoice and how many days after receiving it that they have to pay the bill.
Follow-up for past due accounts should begin the day after the account is due. Then, collections activities should take place on a regularly scheduled basis to try and get the account paid. Letting past due accounts go for too long can make them much harder to collect on.
Help Patients Find a Way to Pay in Full
If your patient needs a treatment they can’t afford, you can help patients find a way to pay for it in full. Clients ARM provides a free tool that can help your patients get the funding they need for their medical care. It’s easy to use and, again, it’s free to use. Once approved, your patient can pay you in full and they can make payments directly to a lender.
Clients ARM Provides Specialized Services for Healthcare Practices
If you’re looking for experienced, affordable billing, coding, customer care, or collections help for your healthcare practice, consider Clients ARM. With more than 30 years of experience, we are the cost-efficient solution to the growing costs of your medical office. Schedule your free consultation now.