Does your practice struggle to maintain an even cash flow and a balanced bank account? It’s fair to say healthcare’s business side is constantly challenging cash flow. Increasing supply costs, higher labor costs, more expensive leases, and claim denials can cause a cash crush. It falls on providers of healthcare services to offer a full-service patient approach against operating a healthy bank balance. However, how can practices focus on good patient ware when business concerns are being pushed to the fore? All too often, organizations must focus on either patient care or business matters. Finding the right balance is virtually impossible. However, options, such as electronic health payment solutions, may be able to help. Here, we take a look at some hacks that will help increase your practice’s bank balance.
Assessing Staffing Levels
When you are trying to improve your practice’s cash flow, staffing is a tricky area that needs addressing. You may need to change your staff around if individuals are underperforming. You may also need to repurpose some staff and reassign their responsibilities to relieve pressure and improve inefficiencies. You may even need to let somebody go if the practice’s atmosphere and cash flow are to improve.
Get Competitive Quotes
When looking for outsourced services and supplies, the answer is to find competitive quotes. Send out a cost item every month for bids. This will ensure you get the best prices. It requires a comprehensive approach but getting the best possible price for all aspects of your practice is vital. From uniform cleaning to equipment leases, comparing rates is important. Avoid long-term contracts as this will help you to stay competitive.
Collecting Your Patient Balances and Dealing with Denied Claims
The collection of patient balances is key to improving your practice’s cash flow. Denied claims can and will destroy your practice. Therefore, you need to get more aggressive with any denials. Review payer contracts with the help of a good attorney and make sure to address denials quickly.
It’s important to acknowledge as much as 35 percent of practice revenue will come out of your patients’ pockets. That means your patient payment policy will probably require an overhaul. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Are you collecting on all your copays?
- Are you keeping card details on file so co-insurance balances can be easily collected?
- Are self-pay patients required to put down a deposit?
- Are you offering an automated payment plan?
- Are you reminding your patients about their bills?
- Are you offering them a web portal, so they can make payments online 24/7?
If the answer to any or all these questions is no, you need to make some changes.
With these policies in place, your patient A/R will be exponentially improved. You need to make collecting patient payments within 60 days the norm on invoices under $200. If the patient’s invoice is higher, you should offer a payment plan. Also, eliminate the need for patients to send checks. Automatic processing against a bank account or a payment card is the way forward. Electronic health payment solutions are convenient and boost your practice’s cash flow to the optimal level.
Informing Your Patients
When you put these changes in place, it is important to let your patients know well in advance. Allow them time to adjust to these changes. It may be tricky in the short term, but overall, your cash flow will improve. While remaining with the existing situation may feel easier, change must take place for you to make improvements. Putting changes into practice, such as adopting electronic health payment solutions, may seem challenging. However, will be worth it.