The increase in self-pay patients and rising operational costs are driving healthcare providers to seek out tools and strategies to operate more efficiently and collect more from patients. Depending on your current processes to collect, there are various changes you can make that can have a significant impact on the amount collected and the time and costs spent to collect. Below are three common process issues that billing service Medical Management Corporation of America (MMCOA) faced with its providers, and how MMCOA addressed each of these situations to enable its providers to collect more and reduce administrative costs:
Collection Method #1: Collecting patient payments using a bank terminal
Some of MMCOA’s providers paid to rent a bank terminal to collect patient card payments. At the end of each day, MMCOA would send a report of all card payments to the providers, who would manually reconcile the card payments with cash and check payments. This process was time-consuming and left room for errors.
Solution: Throw Out the Bank Terminal
MMCOA and its providers got rid of the clunky bank terminals and began using an integrated card swipe device that posts payments online immediately. This allows MMCOA and its providers to access summary reports on all payments at any time to improve their accuracy and visibility into payment details.
Collection Method #2: Collecting patient payments using a non healthcare-specific tool
Some providers were using a cloud-based application to process their patient payments. However, since the tool was not built specifically for healthcare, it did not offer any other capabilities that could help to simplify the billing process, such as integrated eligibility verification.
Solution: Bring Healthcare and Payments Together
MMCOA offered its providers a healthcare-specific payment processing tool, which gives its providers the ability to use the same system for eligibility verification, claims and remittances as well as its payment processing.
Collection Method #3: Manual patient payment collection
For other providers, MMCOA would collect patient payment information over the phone for providers to process using a bank terminal. This was error-prone and inefficient because of the multiple steps required.
Solution: Automated and Integrated Phone Payments
To save time on phone payments, MMCOA integrated its payment processor with its interactive voice response (IVR) system. Today, when patients key in payment card information over the phone to pay their bills, the payments are automatically processed through the cloud-based portal with all other payment types.