For many practices, billing is how they stay open long enough to continue serving patients. When it comes to physician billing, this can be more complicated than you might imagine. Both the front office and the back office need to cooperate to avoid issues where the patients will become frustrated and leave – you depend on them as much as they depend on you. Here are some important tips to follow when it comes to physician billing.
Collect Bills When Service is Rendered
Whether it is through co-pays or the patient has decided to pay out of pocket, those transactions must be finished at the time of the appointment. This can be before the appointment begins or after, when the next appointment is scheduled. Either way, it is important to collect the bills whenever service is tendered. All medical practices must strive to inform the patient of their responsibilities, especially when it comes to financial ones. One way to do this is through verification of patient eligibility. All services that require pre-authorization need to be dealt with before the time of the appointment, or else it could be rescheduled. Rescheduling appointments can present an inconvenience to both your practice and the patient. However, indicating that copays are due is one of the best ways to resolve this issue.
Help Payees with Outstanding Balances
Medical bills can quickly turn to debt. This debt can become crushing to your patients, so it is also important to be understanding. With that in mind, it is imperative that your practice helps the payees with their outstanding balances. Statements and bills sent through the mail must be easy to understand and easy to process when payment is received. Giving patients the ability to make payments over the phone or online is also another way to make life easier for everyone involved. This cuts down on the amount of paper involved in the transaction and can go a long way towards ensuring that all charges are processed properly.
Ensure That All Charges Are Processed
One last piece of advice has to do with the way that payments are processed into your computerized billing system. Physician billing is a difficult concept, and it can confuse even those who are certified in how to do it. There needs to be all of the documentation involved in the paperwork. Coding should be done by someone who is a professional, and all medical facilities need at least one coding expert. Sometimes, hiring outside vendors will be the right way to go, especially if you do not have anyone in-house to do it. All claims need to be processed as well so captured charges are converted into revenues and profits.
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