The Signs Your Healthcare Receivables Management Needs an Overhaul
Is your healthcare receivables management a mess? Is your practice struggling to make ends meet? This is an all too common problem these days. Maybe the problem lies in coding errors or maybe it’s a case of failing to elicit timely payments from patients. Whatever the cause of your issues, it’s paramount to resolve them for the well-being of your practice.
Perhaps you haven’t noticed any issues with your practice yet. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean there aren’t any. It’s always wise to look for any signs that a crisis is on its way. Believe it or not, these do exist. In fact, you should be able to spot them around six to eight months before a disruption in your cash flow. Most practices don’t even think to look for those signs. Therefore, they remain unaware there’s an issue that needs resolving until cash flow problems hit.
So, what are the signs your receivables management needs an overhaul? Let’s take a look at some of the indicators you need to know.
- Increased Account Receivables
The first and most obvious sign a problem is on its way is increased account receivables. Track your data over the previous 12 to 16 weeks. Are your aging accounts stable? Or, are they growing? If they are, it’s time to act. Any accounts receivables over 90 days will disrupt your practice’s cash flow. There are several reasons why an increase in these numbers could be happening. Insurance companies may have denied claims because of incorrect coding. Patients are making late payments because there is no convenient online payment portal. It could even be because of an inefficient invoicing system that relies on manual processing rather than online billing. Whatever the cause, it’s important to determine the reason and, then, deal with it.
- Failing to Electronically Submit Claims
If your practice isn’t submitting claims electronically, this is a problem. Utilizing the latest technology allows for speedier reimbursement. It also helps to reduce the human error element that so often occurs during manual submissions. Advancements are there to make life easier for everyone in the practice. Therefore, it’s important to use them to your advantage. Wasting staff time on manual claims submissions is counterintuitive. You can save time and money for your practice by adopting the latest systems.
- Excessive Denials
Denied claims kick your revenue up in accounts receivable. This can cause major problems with cash flow. Having around 3 percent to 5 percent of your claims denied isn’t much of a problem. However, a rate of 10 percent or over indicates there are issues with your healthcare receivables management. There must be denial tracking in place so you can deal with all denials as quickly as possible. It’s vital to ensure you eliminate as many denials as possible caused by coding issues or human error. Staff members may be submitting claims to incorrect payers, using incorrect codes, or even missing them from claims entirely. You must do everything possible to stop this. Fine-tuning your processes to best practice standards and upgrading your technology can address these issues.
- A Lack of Transparency of Practice Data
Do you have a clear understanding of your practice’s financial performance? If not, you need to ensure better transparency of your practice’s data. These days, data are vital. How else can you analyze key information and make important financial decisions for your practice? It’s only possible to make an informed decision by having the right data at hand. Without it, all financial decisions are almost entirely guesswork.
It’s the revenue cycle that generates the data from which you can make so many vital practice decisions. Look at just some of the things you can determine from the revenue cycle:
- The amount of money you’re making from every patient
- The type of patients who are making the most revenue
- How each physician is performing
- New marketing goals
You can answer each one by utilizing your invoicing data. Without transparent reporting, it’s no wonder the practice is struggling financially.
- A Poor Quality Patient Payment Experience
It’s important to make the patient payment experience as convenient and efficient as possible. If there are too few payment options available or the options available aren’t easy to use, revenue suffers. Patients want the process of paying for their medical bills to be quick and simple. Online portals, IVR systems, and self-service payment plans are all beneficial for patients and practices alike. BillingTree’s cutting-edge solutions are the ultimate answer to your practice’s patient payment problems. They seamlessly integrate with your existing systems for a streamlined approach to patient collections. As a result, your practice’s bottom line increases.
If you spot any of these five signs in your practice, it’s important to act quickly. Overhauling your healthcare receivables management will make a huge difference to your profitability. It could even make the difference between your practice thriving or going under because of a lack of cash flow.