2017 is upon us, and it’s never too early to improve your revenue. Because we live in an era of high copays and high deductibles, patients are forced to shoulder more medical bills. Thus, it falls on practices to utilize the most efficient and cost-saving practices they can.
For practices looking to start 2017 off profitable, here are 3 steps you can take to increase your medical revenue.
1. Employ best practices for patient collections
Keeping your successful patient collection percentage high should be a top priority for your practice. This requires a close look at the whole collections pipeline, from the patient to billing staff.
Let’s start with the patient: start with educating him or her as soon as possible. Education means effectively communicating with the patient about bills and financial agreements, prior to time of service. Bills should be clear, concise, and in language patients can understand. Your front end staff should be the first ones to keep patients educated about bills. Remind them to educate the patient about due dates as soon as possible.
In this day and age, people enjoy convenience and accessibility, which is why implementing and promoting your online patient portal for payment collections is a great way to increase patient collections. The patient portal gives the patient a secure method of online payment from the comfort of home. Online payments save time and resources as you don’t have to deal with physical paperwork, and you can collect payments faster. Read more about the benefits of the patient portal here.
2. Consult medical billing experts
Using external billing experts may seem like a costly enterprise, but if done correctly it can drastically improve your revenue. Practices may find that they save time and money if they leave claims to billing experts.
For example, at PrognoCIS, not only do we offer an integrated electronic health record and practice management software suite, we have in-house medical billing experts who are fully trained in using the software as a part of our Revenue Cycle Management services. This save you time in both implementation and training associated with medical billing. Not only that, we partner with medical billing clearinghouses to take care of claims with insurance companies.
3. Create, maintain, and improve your online presence
I wrote an article a couple of months back on how social media has kickstarted the cosmetic surgery consumer base, and the same information applies to other medical specialties. Not many providers capitalize on the benefits of social media, in a time when 1 in 4 U.S adults share their health experiences through online outlets (Google, Yelp, etc).
The first step is working on your website. Make sure it is mobile- and user-friendly. Then, set up accounts on websites like Yelp, Google, Healthgrades, etc. You may ask patients or other customers to submit a review for you. Many practices acquire the bulk of their patients through social media alone.
After you’ve created your infrastructure, you can optimize your website through search engine optimization (SEO). SEO enables you to highlight target keywords so your practice shows at the top of an internet search.
Online marketing is just as important as physical marketing, and it is low-cost and very effective.
Be Proactive in Improving Medical Revenue
Improving medical revenue starts with actively assessing your problem factors and highlighting key opportunities. Identify places where you are losing the most money, and implement new processes to remedy the situation.
Patient collections are often the last step in a practice’s revenue, but it is an important one. Resorting to collection agencies is a loss for any medical practice, so implementing patient collection best practices are essential for revenue growth.
It is often best to leave the non-medical aspects of a practice to people specialized in it. Outsourcing medical billing can be a huge benefit to a practice, as it can save time and money. Likewise, keeping up with digital marketing is essential in 2017.