In BillingTree’s recent 2016 Healthcare Operations and Technology Survey, healthcare providers were asked what payment options they currently offer their patients. “Onsite and mail” was the top method at 93% and “via agent over the phone” was second at 87%. “Via Interactive Voice Response (IVR)” was a distant third place; only 6.7% of respondents use an IVR system. In addition, only 13.3% of the respondents stated that they were planning to implement an IVR system in the next year to help their collections process.
Healthcare service providers who want to collect more payments while lowering their costs should consider adding an IVR system to their payment offerings. There are many advantages to an IVR system in terms of improving the efficiency of agents as well as collecting payments automatically.
IVR solutions offer many features and benefits to help drive more payments through a cost-efficient, self-service payment channel designed for your specific business needs. Here are some of the benefits of an IVR system:
Accept Payments Any Time
If a patient is calling to make a payment, an IVR system can route those patients directly to an automated payment processor. The IVR system gives those patients the means to securely make payments 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year via a touchtone phone. A robust system accepts credit card and Automated Clearing House (ACH) and eCheck payments. Labor costs are cut immediately by not requiring an agent to collect the payment. It also improves the overall payment experience for customers as they find that making a payment is easy, secure and posted to their account immediately.
Improved Agent Effectiveness
IVR systems ask a series of questions up front which allows the caller to select the agent or function more appropriate for their needs. The IVR system then will transfer calls to the most appropriate agent or department automatically and without fail. Considering that it is the customer who makes the selection, there are reduced feelings of frustration by the caller.
Secure Payments Infrastructure
Data breeches of sensitive payment information can damage a company’s brand and the confidence their customers have in their business. IVR systems are Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) Level-1 certified, typically employ Tier 1 redundant telecom infrastructure and house data in secure, geographically dispersed Class A data centers. The result is that patients can make secure payments at anytime while the company remains HIPAA compliant.
The advantages of an IVR system for the healthcare industry are many. If your goals for the next year are to have a solution to help you improve collections while cutting costs, consider adding an IVR system.
For more than a decade, BillingTree has been committed to understanding the marketplace and growing payments with technology within the healthcare industry. Included in our suite of payment solutions is myPayrazr IVR, designed specifically to allow our customers the immediate ability to increase revenue and streamline operational efficiency. Contact us today to see how we can partner with you to bridge the technology gap and stay up-to-date on the latest in payment processing.