The Best Collections Advice for Medical Professionals
Medical debt is one of the most common reasons why people file for bankruptcy. Most of the Chapter 7 bankruptcies that are filed are considered ‘no asset’ cases. If you were owed money, you will not receive anything toward the debt in a ‘no asset’ case. Even in bankruptcy cases where assets are found by the Trustee, people who are owed money often only see a recovery of pennies on the dollar. Medical professionals must have a solid accounts receivable management plan in place to minimize the likelihood of patients defaulting.
Proactively Preventing the Need for Collections
It is often said that the best offense is a good defense. That statement is true for medical professionals. One of the best pieces of collections advice that we give out to people in the medical industry is to proactively prevent the need for collections. Putting safeguards into place that are followed by all of your staff members can help you minimize the need for collections.
Update Health Insurance Information at Every Visit
People change jobs. People choose new health insurance providers. Any time a client comes in, make sure that your front desk staff updates the patient’s health insurance information. Even patients who are on Medicare or Medicaid could have a supplemental policy of some sort. This update can also help your patients know what is required of them in the form of co-payments. T
Payments Due Before the Appointment
Before your patients are seen by you or any other medical professionals in your office, their co-payment or full payment should be collected. Your office should have a policy about what to do for patients who cannot afford to pay for their appointment. However, payment problems can be a sensitive subject. Your office staff should be trained to handle these problems with care, dignity, and discretion.
Sometimes patients go to the doctor and have their co-pay ready and then they find out that they need lab work, surgery, or a medical procedure that’s going to cost them more money. Even if a patient has insurance, they may not be prepared to cover their deductible so that they can get the care that they need. In fact, some patients have opted to use cash instead of going through their insurance companies for treatment. If your office provides payment plans, make sure that you have proper credit guidelines in place to determine a down payment, monthly payments, and the amount that you are willing to finance. Your office may want to consider using Clients ARM’s free tool Hello Finance Manager. With Hello Finance Manager, we help your patients find a private loan so that they can pay you in full for their medical treatment.
Hire a Collections Professional
Even if you have a collections policy in place, your office may benefit from hiring a collections professional. Clients ARM provides both first party and third party collections. With more than a 90% collections rate, we help our clients get paid. To learn more about how Clients ARM can help your office, contact us now to schedule your free consultation.