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Smart Practice Management

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, August 16, 2017

As a medical professional, you may feel like you want to control every aspect of your practice. However, doing so may not always be possible since attempting to manage your practice on your own could stretch your resources. This is why you should look to a professional practice management service to help ensure that your practice is being run as efficiently and effectively as possible, and we'll do just that here at ProMD.

What Does Smart Practice Management Entail?

When it comes to running your practice, there are three keys to ensuring smart practice management: efficiency, effectiveness, and adaptability.

Efficiency - Make sure your practice runs efficiently is vital to its success. There are many different aspects of a practice's management that affect its efficiency. For example, you should be properly staffed at all times, meaning that during slow periods, you won't want staff members sitting around without anything to do, whereas you won't want to be understaffed during peak hours.

Effectiveness - You'll need to make sure that your entire staff is effective at their jobs. If just one person is unable to meet the demands of their position, it could end up hurting your practice overall. This is because their inability to perform could hurt certain processes or reduce the efficiency of your practice because other members of your staff are forced to pick up the slack.

Adaptability - Your practice may be running relatively smoothly at the moment, but if you receive a sudden influx in patients, you will need to be able to adapt on the fly.

How Can ProMD Help Improve Your Practice Management?

There are a number of ways in which we can help to improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and adaptability of your practice. The following is just a glance of some of the practice management services that we offer:

Consulting services - We can do a full audit of your practice to determine where resources are being wasted, where resources are needed and how the efficiency and effectiveness of your practice can be improved.

Operations oversight - We can provide weekly on-site evaluations by one of our expert account executives or even place a full-time office manager and support staff in your office. With our operations oversight service, we can offer medical office staffing solutions and more to improve practice management.

Billing assessment - We can audit your billing and collections service in order to determine how efficiently it's being run and what areas can be improved; and most important how much monies not collected for services provided. 

Billing and collections services - By outsourcing your billing and collections services to ProMD, you'll not only improve efficiency and effectiveness by reducing billing errors and improving your collection rate, you'll also free up resources that can be used towards improving other areas of your practice. You also won't have to worry about becoming overwhelmed by additional patients since our service will be able to adapt to any growing needs.

Free practice management software - Our practice management software will allow you to streamline your billing efforts, raise your collection rates and increase the profitability of your practice.

Our practice management services here at ProMD can go a long way in helping to make your practice run more efficiently and effectively in addition to becoming more adaptable to future needs. For more information about our practice management services, contact us at ProMD.

Department of Labor’s Wage and Hours Law Still on Hold

Jose Carreras - Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Department of Labor’s Wage and Hours Law Still on Hold

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), sometimes called the Federal Wage and Hour Law covers minimum wage, overtime pay, equal pay, child labor and recordkeeping. It was passed to regulate how employees are paid for their work. Throughout the country there are state and local laws that address these issues which at times contradict FLSA, sometimes granting greater protections to employees than FLSA. When this happens, whichever law is more beneficial to the employee prevails.

In May of last year, the Department of Labor released a new rule regarding the criteria for exemption from overtime requirements. This rule was due to be implemented on December 1 of 2016. In late November, a Federal judge in Texas put an injunction on the rule to determine its validity as well as the Department of Labor’s authority to put it in place. The debate is still taking place. 

Exempt and Non-exempt Employees

Under FLSA employees are classified as either exempt or non-exempt from overtime and minimum wage. A non-exempt employee is entitled to receive no less than the minimum wage for each hour worked as well as overtime pay (1.5 times the regular pay rate) whenever they work more than forty hours in a week. An exempt employee is not entitled to either the minimum wage or overtime pay, but must meet certain criteria for that status. In most cases non-exempt employees are paid hourly while exempt employees receive a fixed salary regardless of the hours worked in a single week. That salary cannot be reduced due to variations in the quality or quantity of work performed. The criteria for exemption are as follows:

  • The employee is paid a salary

  • The salary exceeds the minimum exemption requirements

  • The employee receives the full salary for any workweek in which they work

  • The employee must perform specific duties

What is Changing?

Part of FLSA sets compensation criteria for exemption on the salaries of administrative, professional, executive and highly compensated employees. The new rule basically raises the thresholds at which an employee becomes exempt and calls for them to be readjusted every three years. For administrative, professional and executive exemptions, the threshold more than doubled from $23,660 yearly (or $455 weekly) to $47,476 yearly (or $913 weekly). For highly compensated employees the threshold is going from $100,000 to $134,004 yearly. This means that more employees will be non-exempt when the rule is implemented. If the rule is implemented as written, it is expected that approximately 4.2 million currently exempt workers will suddenly be eligible for overtime pay. 

Does it Affect Your Business?

Virtually all employers are covered by FLSA and can, therefore, potentially be affected by the rule change. If you have employees affected by the new rule there are two options to comply. One is to raise the employee’s salary to the new minimum (if it was below that to start with), or reclassify the affected employee as non-exempt and pay them overtime when appropriate.

It is estimated that some 70% of US employers violate FLSA in one way or another. It is best to stay informed and identify any errors before an audit – or worse, an employee lawsuit – reveals a violation. Many employers are getting ahead of the game by implementing the rule change before it becomes law.

The medical practice consultants at ProMD Practice Management are staying abreast of the FLSA changes. We can guide you to the right choices for your business and insure that you are complying with the law every step of the way. Call us today to schedule a consultation.

Leverage Your Front Desk Staff to Increase Revenue

Jose Carreras - Friday, August 04, 2017

Leverage Your Front Desk Staff to Increase Revenue 

Many physicians are familiar with the drop in cash flow that occurs in the first few months of every year. During this time many patients have not yet met their deductibles and must pay 100% of their healthcare costs out of their own pockets. An average of $4,000 annual deductible for a family on a high deductible insurance plan makes it difficult to keep up. Needless to say that payment plans are the only option for some patients to be able to pay and for doctors who want to keep these patients.

One big healthcare system change that is underway is the growth in popularity of consumer directed health plans (CDHP) which place more responsibility on patients for their health care costs. A 2015 survey showed a sharp rise – from 22% to 35% - in employers that plan to implement CDHP’s in their employee healthcare offerings. With this change medical practices can expect to see an increase in revenue coming from patients instead of insurance companies.

A recent JP Morgan report revealed a trend of medical practice managers focusing on implementing electronic health records and increasing patient scheduling. These are definitely important aspects of a medical practice, but the trend has taken some focus away from managing the revenue cycle. This is an area where your front desk staff could be leveraged. The following tips are especially effective for small medical practices, but larger organizations can benefit from them as well.

Collect Payment when Services are Rendered 

For years, or even decades, the overriding culture has taught patients healthcare costs are something you worry about later. Either your insurance company will take care of it or you will receive a bill in the mail at a later date. In truth, if a patient does not pay for their part of the obligation right away you may have trouble collecting and in most instances never see that money at all. The front office staff is in the best position to collect the patient obligation during the visit as well as collecting on previous balances when the patient returns. 

The best approach is to insure that the front desk staff is familiar with the payer contracted fees, the details of patients’ benefits and deductibles, outstanding patient balances, etc. They should be ready to inform the patient of the amount due and collect upon the patient signing in. Once a patient is out the door, the chance of collecting their copayment drops to 50%, and if it is a larger bill the probability of collecting could fall to as low as 10%. In fact, the Medical Group Management Association, states that those practices that don’t collect from patients at the time of service, leave 30% of their monthly revenue on the table. Put a process in place that has your staff well prepared to inform patients and being upfront about collecting before they leave, or, better yet, when they arrive.

Remove Payment Barriers

The information age has brought with it a number of payment options that consumers now expect practices to offer, including electronic statements and online bill paying. More and more, patients today view healthcare as simply another consumer product. With their growing financial obligation, they want to easily understand what they owe and have options on how to pay. Meet their expectations by offering payment options like online payments and payment plans. One reason cited for not paying medical bills is that they are difficult to understand. Have your front office staff available to review and explain patients’ medical bills. Also, implement a system that allows your staff to offer payment options to your patients.

More than almost anyone else, your front desk staff should be viewed as a resource by your patients. Keep your front office staff informed and trained on billing trends and changes. Insure that they are readily available to answer patient questions and concerns, while also communicating an expectation of timely payments. ProMD offers a variety of medical practice consulting and billing services. Contact ProMD today for a full circle practice assessment and be ready to take advantage of the changing healthcare landscape.

Why Outsource Medical Billing

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Your practice's medical billing and collection services are vital to the success of your practice. Good medical billing and collection services ensures that you make few errors and that your practice receives as much revenue as quickly as possible. 

However, it takes a lot of resources to run an effective medical billing and collection service, which is why you should consider outsourcing.

Why You Should Outsource
Medical Billing and Collection Services

The following are a few of the benefits of outsourcing your medical billing and collection services: 

  • Free up resources in the office - It takes a lot of time to contact insurers, fill out paperwork properly and fill out denial appeals. When you outsource these services, you'll ensure that a group of specialists will handle these tasks, allowing your employees to focus on other important tasks around your practice.

  • Make more money - A good billing service will analyze your billing and collection services to ensure that you're being reimbursed at the highest possible rate, ensuring your claims are submitted properly and reducing your cycle time, which means you'll be paid more quickly as well.

  • Get paid faster - Not only will a billing service help reduce claim errors, but they will provide consistency. If the person in charge of your medical billing is out sick, you have to wait until they get back for claims to be submitted. A billing service will always have somebody to work on your claims as quickly as possible, which means sick days won't get in the way of getting paid quickly.

  • Keep up with a changing industry - Rules and regulations regarding medical billing and collections are constantly changing. A billing service will keep up with these changes for you.

Using Our ProMD Medical Billing
and Collection Services

We use a proven process and infrastructure to make sure our clients receive larger claim payments in shorter time periods. Our clients regularly receive collection rates between 90 and 98 percent. Some of the medical billing and collection services we provide include: 

  • Medical billing Collections
  • Charge posting
  • Payment posting
  • Denial appeals
  • Billing and collection reporting
  • Free practice management system
  • Analysis of account receivables

For more information about our medical billing and collection services and how they can benefit your practice, be sure to contact us at ProMD today. We also provide a number of other services, including consulting services, practice assessment, operations oversight and more.

Leave Medical Billing to the Professionals

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Leave Medical Billing to the Professionals 

Physicians that have been in private practice for a long time probably remember when medical billing could be done between seeing patients. In the past, claim denials were infrequent and regulations were much steadier. Those things have changed and the world of medical billing is not what it once was. Physicians who do not have billing experts on staff, or a billing service handling their revenue cycle, may be losing money, and not just a little.

Medical Billing Staff 

One approach to getting your billing under control is to hire in-house staff to manage it. Finding a good medical biller that is a good fit for your practice will not be a simple matter. There is currently of shortage of capable medical billers available. The truth is you want someone who is more than capable. You want someone who is a highly effective medical biller. Medical billing is a technical field requiring yearly re-certification. An effective medical biller is a driven, knowledgeable professional who has experience, keeps up to date on industry changes, gets clean claims out the door on time, and fights payors on denials. Furthermore, you are going to want someone who is extremely trustworthy. 

It may be difficult to find the right candidate, but not impossible. Before searching for that employee, consider if this is the right approach for your practice. Smaller and new practices, and some specialists, may not have the need for a full time medical biller or billing team. Staff is expensive, especially if there is not enough for them to do. There is another option.

Medical Billing Services 

Using the services of a medical billing company can be compared to hiring an entire billing staff, but without paying those salaries. In most cases, a good medical billing company will increase profits for a medical practice by raising collection rates. Medical billing companies rely on client cash flow for their own success. If the medical practices they service do not make money, neither do they. They have a vested interest in getting their clients claims filed in a timely matter and appealing denials aggressively. Here are some of the pros of contracting a medical billing company. 

Timely Filing of Claims – Not only are claims filed on times, but everything is documented with details. That can prove invaluable in case of a denial of the claim by the insurance company. 

Effective Denial Appeals – The majority of denied insurance claims are never appealed. Medical billing companies understand the importance of pursuing payment on initially denied claims. Expect multiple appeals on denied claims which greatly increases the chances of payment. 

Up to Date on Industry Standards – Medical billing regulations change often. Medical billing company staff remain current on all the changes that can affect your revenue. 

Insurance Company Familiarity – Providing billing services for a variety of clients means ongoing relationships with insurance companies. With a billing service company, your advocate will be familiar with your payors and their claim processing rules. 

ProMD Practice Management has provided billing services to South Florida medical practices since 2004. With certified coding experts handling your billing, you can keep your attention on providing quality health care to your patients.

Call us today to learn about our full range of services.

Why Claims Are Denied

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Submitting claims to insurance payers can be a time-consuming task. Medical practices that are understaffed often take a while to submit their claims, which in turn reduces their revenue since this means that it will take a while to get paid. 

Additionally, when you have staff that's submitting claims as only one of their responsibilities, there's more risk that they will make errors that will result in claim denials. Claim denials can cause your practice to lose revenue, specially if you don't appeal them properly. It's why you should strongly consider outsourcing your medical billing and collections services. 

Why Claims Are Denied

It's worth noting that claim denials are different than claim rejections. Claim rejections occur because the claims that were submitted are missing certain data or have basic formatting errors. Rejected claims can't be processed by the insurance company. It's relatively easy to resubmit a rejected claim - all you need to do is to correct the error. 

A claim denial is a bit more tricky. Claim denials result from claims that were received and processed by the insurance company but then denied for one reason or another.

Once a claim has been denied, you will have to figure out why the claim was denied and then write up an appeal or reconsideration request. If you resubmit the claim without an appeal or reconsideration request, the claim will just be considered a duplicate and will simply be rejected again, costing you both time and money. 

There are a number of reasons why a claim can be denied. The following are a few of the most common reasons:

The claim is a duplicate - Any claims that are for the same service provided, on the same date, from the same provider, for the same beneficiary and during the same encounter will be denied as a duplicate claim. 

The service isn't covered - If the service provided to the beneficiary is not covered by the insurer, it will be denied. 

Wrong information is used - If the codes are wrong, the modifiers are missing or the social security number is wrong, the claim will be denied.

The limit for filing has expired - Once the service has been provided, you have a certain amount of time to file the claim. If you submit the claim past that time limit, it will be denied. 

How Outsourcing Can Reduce Claim Denials

If your claims are being denied because the limit for filing has expired, then it means you're most likely understaffed. This should be the last thing that's causing your claims to be denied. Outsourcing, in this case, can help you to reduce claim denials without having to take on more staff. 

Additionally, when you outsource, you can trust that your claims will be submitted without error. Eliminating errors is one of the most effective ways to reduce claim denials, thereby saving time and helping you to increase your revenue cycle. Errors are more likely to happen if you staff that are responsible for more than just your claim submission process.

Last but not least, when claims are denied, writing an appeal can be especially time-consuming. Your staff will need to not only be well-educated but will need to do additional research to find out why your claims were rejected in order to write an effective appeal. A medical billing and collection service will ensure that all claim denials that do occur have a good chance of being properly appealed.

Claim denials can have a big impact on the revenue of your practice. Contact us at ProMD today for information about outsourcing your medical billing and collections services.

How to Reduce Claim Denials

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 05, 2017

How to Reduce Claim Denials

Consistent cash flow is essential to the health of any business. This holds true for medical practices, as well. Maintaining an adequate level of revenue while minimizing the number of claim denials can be a struggle. Unfortunately, claim disputes have a number of associated costs beyond the denied payment. Estimates show that the average medical practice could loose between $30,000 and $80,000 yearly in denied claims and the staffing expense associated with resolving them. 

Appealing denied claims can be a huge time drain on your staff. In some cases, the process is purposefully designed to discourage the provider. It is for this reason that some 50 to 65 percent of denied claims are never disputed. Bottom line and staffing costs can be exacerbated by deteriorating patient relations. When a patient is receiving bills months after service, they are likely to believe the medical practice is mishandling the billing. Ignore the issue and the same denials are likely to repeat. 

Staff training is a great way to begin addressing the issue of denied claims, but first, try to understand why claims are being denied to begin with.

Why Are Your Claims Denied? 

Denial rates vary greatly from practice to practice and between specialties, but most claims are denied for a handful of reason:

Lack of Specificity - ICD-10 added thousands of diagnosis and procedure codes. Providers must now use the most specific code available to them for each case. Failure to so can lead to claim denial.

Late Fillings - The average medical practice has contracts with 13 payers. Each of these payers has different claim filing deadlines. If a practice files claims weekly it may miss a deadline between filings.

Information Errors - A claim denials can be prompted by a missing subscriber number, incorrect incident date and incorrect patient demographic data.
Coverage Issues - Failure to verify coverage is more common that it should be. Sometimes a patient's insurance coverage may have changed since their last visit, or their policy may include restrictions on some services.

Reduce Claim Denials With Staff Training

According to the Advisory Board, 9 out of 10 denials are preventable. The key is to find and correct the root causes of the denials. One root cause of claim denials in almost any medical practice will be human error. A well trained staff can produce clean insurance claims that meet with minimal denials.
Clean claims start with the physician's input. The doctor's documentation must reflect the service provided and all of the information necessary to bill that service. Coders review the doctor's notes and code the claim to the highest level of specificity available. The billers should transfer the data to the claim and review and analyze the claim before submitting it.

When a claim is denied, each team member also plays a specific role. Demographic errors can be corrected by the billers or front desk staff. If a medical necessity issue arises, the physician will need to get involved. Appealing a claim may not require every staff member's input, but everyone should be aware of who will handle each denied claim most efficiently. 

Hiring a billing partner may be the answer. ProMD Practice Management offers a wide variety of billing services, including full service billing options. Our patients enjoy denial rates as low as 2%. We can help your practice reduce denials and increase revenue flow. Call us today to schedule a consultation and learn more.

Medical Practice Outsourcing Services

Jose Carreras - Friday, June 30, 2017

It can be a real challenge trying to juggle the many tasks that need to be done behind the scenes at your medical practice when all you want to do is focus on your patients. It's why many medical practices end up outsourcing various services, from billing and collections to credentialing. Here at ProMD, we provide practices with these services, allowing them to free up resources, increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their practice, and even make more money in the long run. The following are some of the services we offer that you can outsource through us:

Billing and Collections Services

We are a full-service medical insurance billing and collection company and can offer a number of different billing solutions depending on the unique needs of your practice. Our proven processes allow our clients to not only receive payments within shorter periods of time, but also helps to reduce billing and collections errors.

Using our billing and collections services, the majority of our clients end up achieving anywhere between 90 and 98 percent collection rates. We'll also ensure that your practice keeps up with an ever changing medical billing landscape. Some of the services that we will provide as part of our billing and collections services include accounts receivables analysis, billing, billing and collections reporting, charge posting, collection, denial appeals, payment posting and the implementation of an ongoing practice management system.

Credentialing Services

Government health care payers and managed care companies require credentialing in order to make sure that physicians and medical practices are meeting the requirements of their health care provider. In fact, hospitals require physician credentialing before hospital visits or appointments are allowed.

Because of how thorough physician credentialing is, the process can be quite time-consuming. They need to confirm the licenses that you have obtained, the residency programs that you have completed, the services that you provide and any other qualifications you may have, including references from professionals and colleagues within your industry.

We can help you by performing an in-depth research and collecting all pertinent documents on your behalf to make certification a less time-consuming process. This, in turn, will allow you to focus your time and energy on running your practice.

Additional Services

In addition to our billing and collections services and our credentialing services, we provide medical practices with a number of other services that they can take advantage of in order to better manage their resources so that they can run their practice more efficiently and effectively.

These services include our medical practice consulting service. Our consulting service can help to improve your revenue cycle management by identifying problems that are holding back growth and productivity, thereby allowing you to improve efficiency, productivity and profitability.

Additionally, we can also provide a thorough medical practice assessment in order to analyze the operations of your business, including your billing and collections, your receivables management, your practice management system, your human resources, your staffing and salary, your fee schedule and more.

There are many different ways that you can improve the efficiency, effectiveness and productivity of your medical practice. We can provide consultation services as well as an overall assessment in order to identify exactly where you can improve your practice. More often than not, major improvements can be made by simply outsourcing certain services, such as medical billing and collections or credentialing. To find out more about the services that we offer, be sure to contact us at ProMD today.

Time to Outsource Your Medical Billing?

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Is it Time to Outsource Your Medical Billing? 

Does your medical practice have the resources to maintain a full-time staff to handle coding, billing, contracting and claim denials? Many small practices do not and try to get by with a limited and overworked staff. Depending on the size of your practice and the volume of patients seen, you may not be able to staff a billing department fully so that it can get claims out the door efficiently and deal with all the other details involved in a medical practice’s revenue cycle. 

Revenue cycles have become increasingly complicated. To truly eliminate any risk of non-compliance, a medical practice can expect to hire and maintain a team of certified coders and billers as well as a knowledgeable staff, current on all government regulations and payer requirements. It can be done, but the cost, in time and money, may not be worth it.

Greater Efficiency 

By contracting a qualified billing and collection company, you are putting a team in place that you may not be able to hire as full-time staff. A good billing company makes efforts to stay current on government regulations as well as insurance company rules and requirements. You can expect properly coded claims to go out on time and error free, and claim denials to be appealed and followed up on. Outsourcing your billing can decrease your risk of non-compliance. A practice without the resources to maintain a billing staff fully trained on the latest regulations may expose itself to compliance issues that can seriously impact revenue. 

Removing the burden of billing operations will allow your existing staff to shift their focus back to performing more pressing tasks that will make your office run at a higher efficiency. Furthermore, you can expect your practice’s collection rate to increase. Customers of ProMD’s billing services, for instance, enjoy collection rates as high as 98%.

Finally, a billing and collection company can offer a variety of financial performance reports that will help you to maximize your workflow and efficiency. With data rich reports on your practice’s performance, you will be able to recognize trends quickly and act when opportunities arise.

What to Look for in a Billing Service 

Not all billing companies are created equal. When researching a medical billing and collections company make sure they are offering a complete set of services that you would not be able to easily put in place in-house. Find out if they employ certified coders and whether provider enrollment, contracting and credentialing is included. A full service medical billing company should provide the following services: 

  • Charge posting
  • Billing
  • Collection
  • Denial appeals
  • Payment posting
  • Billing and collection reporting
  • Account receivables analysis

If you are ready to outsource your medical practice’s billing, consider ProMD Practice Management. ProMD offers full service billing and collection solutions. With our proven processes and infrastructure, we are able to offer our clients higher claim payments in a shorter amount of time.

Call us today to learn about our full line of billing services.

Preventing Cash Flow Problems

Jose Carreras - Thursday, June 15, 2017

The healthcare insurance industry is in somewhat of a flux at the moment, which can cause problems for any practices that aren't paying careful attention to what's going on. For example, patients are being held more responsible for health insurance costs than insurance payers, which is evidenced by the rising co-payments and deductibles.

This can be a problem for medical practices due to the fact that patients tend to pay much slower than insurance payers, which means that if they aren't careful, their cash flow could decrease.

Preventing Cash Flow Problems

Because patients are being forced to pay higher costs, it means that more of your cash flow is dependent on your patients than on insurance companies. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, 25% of families have an unpaid healthcare bill, 10% of families have medical bills they can't pay at all and 20% are on a payment plan to pay off their bills over time.

As you can imagine, this could affect your cash flow drastically, especially if the co-payments and deductibles of your patients continue to go up. Fortunately, there are a few steps that you can take to help keep your cash flow from declining. The following are a few such steps:

Collect payment upfront - Don't allow patients to pay after their appointment. Make it a practice to require payments up front. Have a sign that states this and post it on your website. Make sure your staff reminds your patients that they will need to pay their co-payments whenever they call them to remind them about their scheduled appointments.

Take multiple forms of payment - To encourage patients to pay what they owe upfront, offer them a number of ways to pay, such as with cash, by check, by credit card or by debit card. This way, your patients can't use the excuse that they don't have cash on hand to pay.

Keep patient credit card info on file - One way that you can reduce unpaid medical bills is by keeping patients' credit card information on file and getting them to agree to allow you to automatically bill their card for what they owe. You will need permission to do this, of course, and you'll have to make sure you take security precautions to keep their credit card information safe.

Provide an incentive for paying upfront - Some patients may try to pay later. While this is preferable to not being paid at all, you can get some of these patients to pay upfront with incentives, such as a small discount for paying before their appointment instead of after.

These are a few tips to help prevent cash inflow problems. But there are also cash outflow issues you should look into as well. The following are a few ways you can limit cash outflow:

Analyze your staff - Figure out how much time your staff spends working. If they have a lot of downtime, then you may be overstaffed.

Outsource billing and collections - Outsourcing medical billing and collections services can help to not only improve your collections, it could allow your office to run much more efficiently and effectively, and may even allow you to reduce some of your staff.

These are just a few ways that you can improve your cash flow and prevent potential cash flow problems that might arise as the healthcare insurance industry is in the midst of potential change. For information about our billing and collection services, be sure to contact us at ProMD today.


Smart Practice Management

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, August 16, 2017

As a medical professional, you may feel like you want to control every aspect of your practice. However, doing so may not always be possible since attempting to manage your practice on your own could stretch your resources. This is why you should look to a professional practice management service to help ensure that your practice is being run as efficiently and effectively as possible, and we'll do just that here at ProMD.

What Does Smart Practice Management Entail?

When it comes to running your practice, there are three keys to ensuring smart practice management: efficiency, effectiveness, and adaptability.

Efficiency - Make sure your practice runs efficiently is vital to its success. There are many different aspects of a practice's management that affect its efficiency. For example, you should be properly staffed at all times, meaning that during slow periods, you won't want staff members sitting around without anything to do, whereas you won't want to be understaffed during peak hours.

Effectiveness - You'll need to make sure that your entire staff is effective at their jobs. If just one person is unable to meet the demands of their position, it could end up hurting your practice overall. This is because their inability to perform could hurt certain processes or reduce the efficiency of your practice because other members of your staff are forced to pick up the slack.

Adaptability - Your practice may be running relatively smoothly at the moment, but if you receive a sudden influx in patients, you will need to be able to adapt on the fly.

How Can ProMD Help Improve Your Practice Management?

There are a number of ways in which we can help to improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and adaptability of your practice. The following is just a glance of some of the practice management services that we offer:

Consulting services - We can do a full audit of your practice to determine where resources are being wasted, where resources are needed and how the efficiency and effectiveness of your practice can be improved.

Operations oversight - We can provide weekly on-site evaluations by one of our expert account executives or even place a full-time office manager and support staff in your office. With our operations oversight service, we can offer medical office staffing solutions and more to improve practice management.

Billing assessment - We can audit your billing and collections service in order to determine how efficiently it's being run and what areas can be improved; and most important how much monies not collected for services provided. 

Billing and collections services - By outsourcing your billing and collections services to ProMD, you'll not only improve efficiency and effectiveness by reducing billing errors and improving your collection rate, you'll also free up resources that can be used towards improving other areas of your practice. You also won't have to worry about becoming overwhelmed by additional patients since our service will be able to adapt to any growing needs.

Free practice management software - Our practice management software will allow you to streamline your billing efforts, raise your collection rates and increase the profitability of your practice.

Our practice management services here at ProMD can go a long way in helping to make your practice run more efficiently and effectively in addition to becoming more adaptable to future needs. For more information about our practice management services, contact us at ProMD.

Department of Labor’s Wage and Hours Law Still on Hold

Jose Carreras - Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Department of Labor’s Wage and Hours Law Still on Hold

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), sometimes called the Federal Wage and Hour Law covers minimum wage, overtime pay, equal pay, child labor and recordkeeping. It was passed to regulate how employees are paid for their work. Throughout the country there are state and local laws that address these issues which at times contradict FLSA, sometimes granting greater protections to employees than FLSA. When this happens, whichever law is more beneficial to the employee prevails.

In May of last year, the Department of Labor released a new rule regarding the criteria for exemption from overtime requirements. This rule was due to be implemented on December 1 of 2016. In late November, a Federal judge in Texas put an injunction on the rule to determine its validity as well as the Department of Labor’s authority to put it in place. The debate is still taking place. 

Exempt and Non-exempt Employees

Under FLSA employees are classified as either exempt or non-exempt from overtime and minimum wage. A non-exempt employee is entitled to receive no less than the minimum wage for each hour worked as well as overtime pay (1.5 times the regular pay rate) whenever they work more than forty hours in a week. An exempt employee is not entitled to either the minimum wage or overtime pay, but must meet certain criteria for that status. In most cases non-exempt employees are paid hourly while exempt employees receive a fixed salary regardless of the hours worked in a single week. That salary cannot be reduced due to variations in the quality or quantity of work performed. The criteria for exemption are as follows:

  • The employee is paid a salary

  • The salary exceeds the minimum exemption requirements

  • The employee receives the full salary for any workweek in which they work

  • The employee must perform specific duties

What is Changing?

Part of FLSA sets compensation criteria for exemption on the salaries of administrative, professional, executive and highly compensated employees. The new rule basically raises the thresholds at which an employee becomes exempt and calls for them to be readjusted every three years. For administrative, professional and executive exemptions, the threshold more than doubled from $23,660 yearly (or $455 weekly) to $47,476 yearly (or $913 weekly). For highly compensated employees the threshold is going from $100,000 to $134,004 yearly. This means that more employees will be non-exempt when the rule is implemented. If the rule is implemented as written, it is expected that approximately 4.2 million currently exempt workers will suddenly be eligible for overtime pay. 

Does it Affect Your Business?

Virtually all employers are covered by FLSA and can, therefore, potentially be affected by the rule change. If you have employees affected by the new rule there are two options to comply. One is to raise the employee’s salary to the new minimum (if it was below that to start with), or reclassify the affected employee as non-exempt and pay them overtime when appropriate.

It is estimated that some 70% of US employers violate FLSA in one way or another. It is best to stay informed and identify any errors before an audit – or worse, an employee lawsuit – reveals a violation. Many employers are getting ahead of the game by implementing the rule change before it becomes law.

The medical practice consultants at ProMD Practice Management are staying abreast of the FLSA changes. We can guide you to the right choices for your business and insure that you are complying with the law every step of the way. Call us today to schedule a consultation.

Leverage Your Front Desk Staff to Increase Revenue

Jose Carreras - Friday, August 04, 2017

Leverage Your Front Desk Staff to Increase Revenue 

Many physicians are familiar with the drop in cash flow that occurs in the first few months of every year. During this time many patients have not yet met their deductibles and must pay 100% of their healthcare costs out of their own pockets. An average of $4,000 annual deductible for a family on a high deductible insurance plan makes it difficult to keep up. Needless to say that payment plans are the only option for some patients to be able to pay and for doctors who want to keep these patients.

One big healthcare system change that is underway is the growth in popularity of consumer directed health plans (CDHP) which place more responsibility on patients for their health care costs. A 2015 survey showed a sharp rise – from 22% to 35% - in employers that plan to implement CDHP’s in their employee healthcare offerings. With this change medical practices can expect to see an increase in revenue coming from patients instead of insurance companies.

A recent JP Morgan report revealed a trend of medical practice managers focusing on implementing electronic health records and increasing patient scheduling. These are definitely important aspects of a medical practice, but the trend has taken some focus away from managing the revenue cycle. This is an area where your front desk staff could be leveraged. The following tips are especially effective for small medical practices, but larger organizations can benefit from them as well.

Collect Payment when Services are Rendered 

For years, or even decades, the overriding culture has taught patients healthcare costs are something you worry about later. Either your insurance company will take care of it or you will receive a bill in the mail at a later date. In truth, if a patient does not pay for their part of the obligation right away you may have trouble collecting and in most instances never see that money at all. The front office staff is in the best position to collect the patient obligation during the visit as well as collecting on previous balances when the patient returns. 

The best approach is to insure that the front desk staff is familiar with the payer contracted fees, the details of patients’ benefits and deductibles, outstanding patient balances, etc. They should be ready to inform the patient of the amount due and collect upon the patient signing in. Once a patient is out the door, the chance of collecting their copayment drops to 50%, and if it is a larger bill the probability of collecting could fall to as low as 10%. In fact, the Medical Group Management Association, states that those practices that don’t collect from patients at the time of service, leave 30% of their monthly revenue on the table. Put a process in place that has your staff well prepared to inform patients and being upfront about collecting before they leave, or, better yet, when they arrive.

Remove Payment Barriers

The information age has brought with it a number of payment options that consumers now expect practices to offer, including electronic statements and online bill paying. More and more, patients today view healthcare as simply another consumer product. With their growing financial obligation, they want to easily understand what they owe and have options on how to pay. Meet their expectations by offering payment options like online payments and payment plans. One reason cited for not paying medical bills is that they are difficult to understand. Have your front office staff available to review and explain patients’ medical bills. Also, implement a system that allows your staff to offer payment options to your patients.

More than almost anyone else, your front desk staff should be viewed as a resource by your patients. Keep your front office staff informed and trained on billing trends and changes. Insure that they are readily available to answer patient questions and concerns, while also communicating an expectation of timely payments. ProMD offers a variety of medical practice consulting and billing services. Contact ProMD today for a full circle practice assessment and be ready to take advantage of the changing healthcare landscape.

Why Outsource Medical Billing

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Your practice's medical billing and collection services are vital to the success of your practice. Good medical billing and collection services ensures that you make few errors and that your practice receives as much revenue as quickly as possible. 

However, it takes a lot of resources to run an effective medical billing and collection service, which is why you should consider outsourcing.

Why You Should Outsource
Medical Billing and Collection Services

The following are a few of the benefits of outsourcing your medical billing and collection services: 

  • Free up resources in the office - It takes a lot of time to contact insurers, fill out paperwork properly and fill out denial appeals. When you outsource these services, you'll ensure that a group of specialists will handle these tasks, allowing your employees to focus on other important tasks around your practice.

  • Make more money - A good billing service will analyze your billing and collection services to ensure that you're being reimbursed at the highest possible rate, ensuring your claims are submitted properly and reducing your cycle time, which means you'll be paid more quickly as well.

  • Get paid faster - Not only will a billing service help reduce claim errors, but they will provide consistency. If the person in charge of your medical billing is out sick, you have to wait until they get back for claims to be submitted. A billing service will always have somebody to work on your claims as quickly as possible, which means sick days won't get in the way of getting paid quickly.

  • Keep up with a changing industry - Rules and regulations regarding medical billing and collections are constantly changing. A billing service will keep up with these changes for you.

Using Our ProMD Medical Billing
and Collection Services

We use a proven process and infrastructure to make sure our clients receive larger claim payments in shorter time periods. Our clients regularly receive collection rates between 90 and 98 percent. Some of the medical billing and collection services we provide include: 

  • Medical billing Collections
  • Charge posting
  • Payment posting
  • Denial appeals
  • Billing and collection reporting
  • Free practice management system
  • Analysis of account receivables

For more information about our medical billing and collection services and how they can benefit your practice, be sure to contact us at ProMD today. We also provide a number of other services, including consulting services, practice assessment, operations oversight and more.

Leave Medical Billing to the Professionals

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Leave Medical Billing to the Professionals 

Physicians that have been in private practice for a long time probably remember when medical billing could be done between seeing patients. In the past, claim denials were infrequent and regulations were much steadier. Those things have changed and the world of medical billing is not what it once was. Physicians who do not have billing experts on staff, or a billing service handling their revenue cycle, may be losing money, and not just a little.

Medical Billing Staff 

One approach to getting your billing under control is to hire in-house staff to manage it. Finding a good medical biller that is a good fit for your practice will not be a simple matter. There is currently of shortage of capable medical billers available. The truth is you want someone who is more than capable. You want someone who is a highly effective medical biller. Medical billing is a technical field requiring yearly re-certification. An effective medical biller is a driven, knowledgeable professional who has experience, keeps up to date on industry changes, gets clean claims out the door on time, and fights payors on denials. Furthermore, you are going to want someone who is extremely trustworthy. 

It may be difficult to find the right candidate, but not impossible. Before searching for that employee, consider if this is the right approach for your practice. Smaller and new practices, and some specialists, may not have the need for a full time medical biller or billing team. Staff is expensive, especially if there is not enough for them to do. There is another option.

Medical Billing Services 

Using the services of a medical billing company can be compared to hiring an entire billing staff, but without paying those salaries. In most cases, a good medical billing company will increase profits for a medical practice by raising collection rates. Medical billing companies rely on client cash flow for their own success. If the medical practices they service do not make money, neither do they. They have a vested interest in getting their clients claims filed in a timely matter and appealing denials aggressively. Here are some of the pros of contracting a medical billing company. 

Timely Filing of Claims – Not only are claims filed on times, but everything is documented with details. That can prove invaluable in case of a denial of the claim by the insurance company. 

Effective Denial Appeals – The majority of denied insurance claims are never appealed. Medical billing companies understand the importance of pursuing payment on initially denied claims. Expect multiple appeals on denied claims which greatly increases the chances of payment. 

Up to Date on Industry Standards – Medical billing regulations change often. Medical billing company staff remain current on all the changes that can affect your revenue. 

Insurance Company Familiarity – Providing billing services for a variety of clients means ongoing relationships with insurance companies. With a billing service company, your advocate will be familiar with your payors and their claim processing rules. 

ProMD Practice Management has provided billing services to South Florida medical practices since 2004. With certified coding experts handling your billing, you can keep your attention on providing quality health care to your patients.

Call us today to learn about our full range of services.

Why Claims Are Denied

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Submitting claims to insurance payers can be a time-consuming task. Medical practices that are understaffed often take a while to submit their claims, which in turn reduces their revenue since this means that it will take a while to get paid. 

Additionally, when you have staff that's submitting claims as only one of their responsibilities, there's more risk that they will make errors that will result in claim denials. Claim denials can cause your practice to lose revenue, specially if you don't appeal them properly. It's why you should strongly consider outsourcing your medical billing and collections services. 

Why Claims Are Denied

It's worth noting that claim denials are different than claim rejections. Claim rejections occur because the claims that were submitted are missing certain data or have basic formatting errors. Rejected claims can't be processed by the insurance company. It's relatively easy to resubmit a rejected claim - all you need to do is to correct the error. 

A claim denial is a bit more tricky. Claim denials result from claims that were received and processed by the insurance company but then denied for one reason or another.

Once a claim has been denied, you will have to figure out why the claim was denied and then write up an appeal or reconsideration request. If you resubmit the claim without an appeal or reconsideration request, the claim will just be considered a duplicate and will simply be rejected again, costing you both time and money. 

There are a number of reasons why a claim can be denied. The following are a few of the most common reasons:

The claim is a duplicate - Any claims that are for the same service provided, on the same date, from the same provider, for the same beneficiary and during the same encounter will be denied as a duplicate claim. 

The service isn't covered - If the service provided to the beneficiary is not covered by the insurer, it will be denied. 

Wrong information is used - If the codes are wrong, the modifiers are missing or the social security number is wrong, the claim will be denied.

The limit for filing has expired - Once the service has been provided, you have a certain amount of time to file the claim. If you submit the claim past that time limit, it will be denied. 

How Outsourcing Can Reduce Claim Denials

If your claims are being denied because the limit for filing has expired, then it means you're most likely understaffed. This should be the last thing that's causing your claims to be denied. Outsourcing, in this case, can help you to reduce claim denials without having to take on more staff. 

Additionally, when you outsource, you can trust that your claims will be submitted without error. Eliminating errors is one of the most effective ways to reduce claim denials, thereby saving time and helping you to increase your revenue cycle. Errors are more likely to happen if you staff that are responsible for more than just your claim submission process.

Last but not least, when claims are denied, writing an appeal can be especially time-consuming. Your staff will need to not only be well-educated but will need to do additional research to find out why your claims were rejected in order to write an effective appeal. A medical billing and collection service will ensure that all claim denials that do occur have a good chance of being properly appealed.

Claim denials can have a big impact on the revenue of your practice. Contact us at ProMD today for information about outsourcing your medical billing and collections services.

How to Reduce Claim Denials

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, July 05, 2017

How to Reduce Claim Denials

Consistent cash flow is essential to the health of any business. This holds true for medical practices, as well. Maintaining an adequate level of revenue while minimizing the number of claim denials can be a struggle. Unfortunately, claim disputes have a number of associated costs beyond the denied payment. Estimates show that the average medical practice could loose between $30,000 and $80,000 yearly in denied claims and the staffing expense associated with resolving them. 

Appealing denied claims can be a huge time drain on your staff. In some cases, the process is purposefully designed to discourage the provider. It is for this reason that some 50 to 65 percent of denied claims are never disputed. Bottom line and staffing costs can be exacerbated by deteriorating patient relations. When a patient is receiving bills months after service, they are likely to believe the medical practice is mishandling the billing. Ignore the issue and the same denials are likely to repeat. 

Staff training is a great way to begin addressing the issue of denied claims, but first, try to understand why claims are being denied to begin with.

Why Are Your Claims Denied? 

Denial rates vary greatly from practice to practice and between specialties, but most claims are denied for a handful of reason:

Lack of Specificity - ICD-10 added thousands of diagnosis and procedure codes. Providers must now use the most specific code available to them for each case. Failure to so can lead to claim denial.

Late Fillings - The average medical practice has contracts with 13 payers. Each of these payers has different claim filing deadlines. If a practice files claims weekly it may miss a deadline between filings.

Information Errors - A claim denials can be prompted by a missing subscriber number, incorrect incident date and incorrect patient demographic data.
Coverage Issues - Failure to verify coverage is more common that it should be. Sometimes a patient's insurance coverage may have changed since their last visit, or their policy may include restrictions on some services.

Reduce Claim Denials With Staff Training

According to the Advisory Board, 9 out of 10 denials are preventable. The key is to find and correct the root causes of the denials. One root cause of claim denials in almost any medical practice will be human error. A well trained staff can produce clean insurance claims that meet with minimal denials.
Clean claims start with the physician's input. The doctor's documentation must reflect the service provided and all of the information necessary to bill that service. Coders review the doctor's notes and code the claim to the highest level of specificity available. The billers should transfer the data to the claim and review and analyze the claim before submitting it.

When a claim is denied, each team member also plays a specific role. Demographic errors can be corrected by the billers or front desk staff. If a medical necessity issue arises, the physician will need to get involved. Appealing a claim may not require every staff member's input, but everyone should be aware of who will handle each denied claim most efficiently. 

Hiring a billing partner may be the answer. ProMD Practice Management offers a wide variety of billing services, including full service billing options. Our patients enjoy denial rates as low as 2%. We can help your practice reduce denials and increase revenue flow. Call us today to schedule a consultation and learn more.

Medical Practice Outsourcing Services

Jose Carreras - Friday, June 30, 2017

It can be a real challenge trying to juggle the many tasks that need to be done behind the scenes at your medical practice when all you want to do is focus on your patients. It's why many medical practices end up outsourcing various services, from billing and collections to credentialing. Here at ProMD, we provide practices with these services, allowing them to free up resources, increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their practice, and even make more money in the long run. The following are some of the services we offer that you can outsource through us:

Billing and Collections Services

We are a full-service medical insurance billing and collection company and can offer a number of different billing solutions depending on the unique needs of your practice. Our proven processes allow our clients to not only receive payments within shorter periods of time, but also helps to reduce billing and collections errors.

Using our billing and collections services, the majority of our clients end up achieving anywhere between 90 and 98 percent collection rates. We'll also ensure that your practice keeps up with an ever changing medical billing landscape. Some of the services that we will provide as part of our billing and collections services include accounts receivables analysis, billing, billing and collections reporting, charge posting, collection, denial appeals, payment posting and the implementation of an ongoing practice management system.

Credentialing Services

Government health care payers and managed care companies require credentialing in order to make sure that physicians and medical practices are meeting the requirements of their health care provider. In fact, hospitals require physician credentialing before hospital visits or appointments are allowed.

Because of how thorough physician credentialing is, the process can be quite time-consuming. They need to confirm the licenses that you have obtained, the residency programs that you have completed, the services that you provide and any other qualifications you may have, including references from professionals and colleagues within your industry.

We can help you by performing an in-depth research and collecting all pertinent documents on your behalf to make certification a less time-consuming process. This, in turn, will allow you to focus your time and energy on running your practice.

Additional Services

In addition to our billing and collections services and our credentialing services, we provide medical practices with a number of other services that they can take advantage of in order to better manage their resources so that they can run their practice more efficiently and effectively.

These services include our medical practice consulting service. Our consulting service can help to improve your revenue cycle management by identifying problems that are holding back growth and productivity, thereby allowing you to improve efficiency, productivity and profitability.

Additionally, we can also provide a thorough medical practice assessment in order to analyze the operations of your business, including your billing and collections, your receivables management, your practice management system, your human resources, your staffing and salary, your fee schedule and more.

There are many different ways that you can improve the efficiency, effectiveness and productivity of your medical practice. We can provide consultation services as well as an overall assessment in order to identify exactly where you can improve your practice. More often than not, major improvements can be made by simply outsourcing certain services, such as medical billing and collections or credentialing. To find out more about the services that we offer, be sure to contact us at ProMD today.

Time to Outsource Your Medical Billing?

Jose Carreras - Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Is it Time to Outsource Your Medical Billing? 

Does your medical practice have the resources to maintain a full-time staff to handle coding, billing, contracting and claim denials? Many small practices do not and try to get by with a limited and overworked staff. Depending on the size of your practice and the volume of patients seen, you may not be able to staff a billing department fully so that it can get claims out the door efficiently and deal with all the other details involved in a medical practice’s revenue cycle. 

Revenue cycles have become increasingly complicated. To truly eliminate any risk of non-compliance, a medical practice can expect to hire and maintain a team of certified coders and billers as well as a knowledgeable staff, current on all government regulations and payer requirements. It can be done, but the cost, in time and money, may not be worth it.

Greater Efficiency 

By contracting a qualified billing and collection company, you are putting a team in place that you may not be able to hire as full-time staff. A good billing company makes efforts to stay current on government regulations as well as insurance company rules and requirements. You can expect properly coded claims to go out on time and error free, and claim denials to be appealed and followed up on. Outsourcing your billing can decrease your risk of non-compliance. A practice without the resources to maintain a billing staff fully trained on the latest regulations may expose itself to compliance issues that can seriously impact revenue. 

Removing the burden of billing operations will allow your existing staff to shift their focus back to performing more pressing tasks that will make your office run at a higher efficiency. Furthermore, you can expect your practice’s collection rate to increase. Customers of ProMD’s billing services, for instance, enjoy collection rates as high as 98%.

Finally, a billing and collection company can offer a variety of financial performance reports that will help you to maximize your workflow and efficiency. With data rich reports on your practice’s performance, you will be able to recognize trends quickly and act when opportunities arise.

What to Look for in a Billing Service 

Not all billing companies are created equal. When researching a medical billing and collections company make sure they are offering a complete set of services that you would not be able to easily put in place in-house. Find out if they employ certified coders and whether provider enrollment, contracting and credentialing is included. A full service medical billing company should provide the following services: 

  • Charge posting
  • Billing
  • Collection
  • Denial appeals
  • Payment posting
  • Billing and collection reporting
  • Account receivables analysis

If you are ready to outsource your medical practice’s billing, consider ProMD Practice Management. ProMD offers full service billing and collection solutions. With our proven processes and infrastructure, we are able to offer our clients higher claim payments in a shorter amount of time.

Call us today to learn about our full line of billing services.

Preventing Cash Flow Problems

Jose Carreras - Thursday, June 15, 2017

The healthcare insurance industry is in somewhat of a flux at the moment, which can cause problems for any practices that aren't paying careful attention to what's going on. For example, patients are being held more responsible for health insurance costs than insurance payers, which is evidenced by the rising co-payments and deductibles.

This can be a problem for medical practices due to the fact that patients tend to pay much slower than insurance payers, which means that if they aren't careful, their cash flow could decrease.

Preventing Cash Flow Problems

Because patients are being forced to pay higher costs, it means that more of your cash flow is dependent on your patients than on insurance companies. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, 25% of families have an unpaid healthcare bill, 10% of families have medical bills they can't pay at all and 20% are on a payment plan to pay off their bills over time.

As you can imagine, this could affect your cash flow drastically, especially if the co-payments and deductibles of your patients continue to go up. Fortunately, there are a few steps that you can take to help keep your cash flow from declining. The following are a few such steps:

Collect payment upfront - Don't allow patients to pay after their appointment. Make it a practice to require payments up front. Have a sign that states this and post it on your website. Make sure your staff reminds your patients that they will need to pay their co-payments whenever they call them to remind them about their scheduled appointments.

Take multiple forms of payment - To encourage patients to pay what they owe upfront, offer them a number of ways to pay, such as with cash, by check, by credit card or by debit card. This way, your patients can't use the excuse that they don't have cash on hand to pay.

Keep patient credit card info on file - One way that you can reduce unpaid medical bills is by keeping patients' credit card information on file and getting them to agree to allow you to automatically bill their card for what they owe. You will need permission to do this, of course, and you'll have to make sure you take security precautions to keep their credit card information safe.

Provide an incentive for paying upfront - Some patients may try to pay later. While this is preferable to not being paid at all, you can get some of these patients to pay upfront with incentives, such as a small discount for paying before their appointment instead of after.

These are a few tips to help prevent cash inflow problems. But there are also cash outflow issues you should look into as well. The following are a few ways you can limit cash outflow:

Analyze your staff - Figure out how much time your staff spends working. If they have a lot of downtime, then you may be overstaffed.

Outsource billing and collections - Outsourcing medical billing and collections services can help to not only improve your collections, it could allow your office to run much more efficiently and effectively, and may even allow you to reduce some of your staff.

These are just a few ways that you can improve your cash flow and prevent potential cash flow problems that might arise as the healthcare insurance industry is in the midst of potential change. For information about our billing and collection services, be sure to contact us at ProMD today.

About The Author

  

Jose Carreras, ProMDJose Carreras is Vice President and COO of ProMD. He holds a Master's Degree in Health Care Administration from Nova Southeastern University and has been in the health care industry for more than 20 years, including management positions at Jackson Memorial Hospital, PCA/CAC Medical Centers and United Healthcare. He was voted Best Practice Care Administrator by the readers of the South Florida Medical Business Journal in 2006.


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