Healthcare practices nationwide are finding it harder than ever to elicit timely payments of medical bills from patients. This is especially the case for Millennial patients. As a generation, Millennials are particularly struggling with healthcare debt. This is causing major problems for practices of all sizes as cash flow starts to dry up. Practices with many Millennials as patients are struggling to stay afloat as bills go unpaid. So how can healthcare payments solutions make a difference? Can they really improve the Millennial patient experience?
The Problems with Today’s Healthcare Revenue Collection Systems
Too many practices today are taking the wrong approach when handling Millennial patients and their outstanding healthcare debts. They fail to tell patients how much they owe. They fail to give payment options. They lack a sense of urgency in recouping those payments. They even assume that Millennial patients cannot and will not pay. As a result, many patients are simply walking away without paying any of their balances. This is unsustainable for practices, which need cash to keep flowing to stay afloat.
Billing staff in practices everywhere need better education on how to handle patient payments. The staff members need to learn new ways to discuss payment options and to elicit outstanding sums. In short, they need to rethink their collection strategies.
Millennials Want Options at Their Fingertips
Writing a paper check is something that some people have not done for years. In fact, Millennials may never have done it. Today, digital payments are all the rage. Yet, some medical practices continue to only accept payments in check format. This is a surefire way to failure in today’s modern consumer-driven climate. When practices only allow check payments, money is simply slipping away. While elderly patients may still rely on their checkbooks, Millennials are increasingly opting for online methods. This means that practices need to change their payment offerings to accommodate this. Being able to accept medical payments from patients online can make a huge difference to collections.
Who Are the Millennials?
There are around 72 million Millennials in the United States today. They outnumber the Baby Boomer generation. Almost three-quarters of them already have debts by the time they visit their doctors. In fact, two-thirds have serious concerns about how to pay any bill amounting to more than $1,000. More than 70 percent of people in this generation want their healthcare providers to discuss payment options. They’re interested in finding out more about no-interest payment plans. Yet, providers are failing to keep up with this demand. Only 14 percent of Millennials have reported being able to obtain the no-interest payment plan that they desire.
Adopting Payment Technologies
Patients in this generation want choice, and they want flexibility. Not only do they want to pay online, but they also want a thoroughly technological solution. They don’t want paper bills and invoices. They prefer electronic billing solutions. They want the ability to arrange a payment plan to budget more effectively. They want the convenience of keeping their credit cards on file.
These technologies do not just improve the Millennial patient experience, however. They can also help healthcare providers. Payment technologies, such as those offered by BillingTree, streamline billing and payment processes effectively. They make it quicker and easier to receive outstanding sums without expending staff time and effort. Staff at medical practices can, therefore, focus their attention on the things that need it the most. There will be an overall reduction in practice costs and an increase in patient loyalty. With the right healthcare payments solutions, both healthcare providers and Millennials can reap the benefits.