Three Key Challenges Facing Medical Practices In 2018

This year is set to be another challenging year for medical practices, with several difficulties facing practitioners. However, three of those challenges are proving more difficult to overcome than ever before. Here, we look at the way in which government mandates, utilizing big data and eliciting healthcare patient payments, are causing problems for healthcare settings today, and how these issues can best be resolved.

Challenge 1 – Government Mandate Compliance

Thirty-four percent of healthcare practices today report that adhering to the ever-changing mandates and requirements issued by the government is their top challenge. With ongoing uncertainty and fluctuation surrounding the Affordable Care Act (ACA), providers are uncertain how to proceed when it comes to delivering high-quality, integrated, and consistent care and volatility is reigning supreme within the healthcare economic sector.

Although healthcare organizations have limited ways in which to address this, developing a wide variety of ways in which to handle a host of scenarios and developing business plans that can be executed rapidly to accommodate changes is essential in today’s climate.

Challenge 2 – The Use of Big Data to Reduce Costs and Improve Quality

With only 12 percent of healthcare organizations believing that they were succeeding in this area of their practice, it is clear that steps need to be taken to address this issue. Many organizations still lack the appropriate technology to capitalize on and manage the huge volume of data that they possess – from billing data to clinical data, and this means a new technological infrastructure needs to be put in place that is capable of storing, retrieving, and analyzing the various data sources at scale.

Healthcare organizations that harness data successfully have a competitive advantage, so identifying and establishing the necessary analytic capabilities and adopting the most effective technology is vital. With data access and technology continuing to transform the provision of healthcare, advanced products must be embraced, and cyber threats prevented to move forward into 2018.

Challenge 3 – Eliciting Patient Payments

With increasing numbers of patients facing a greater responsibility for their medical bills and deductibles rising higher than ever before, it’s no wonder that eliciting patient payments has become such a complex and time-consuming process. Patients are struggling to meet their payment obligations, and medical practice staff members are having to spend longer than ever chasing after debtors and handling manual payment processing.

The reduced cash flow, caused by the lack of on-time patientpayments,means that some practices are finding it increasingly hard to stay afloat. Staff members are unable to concentrate on the essential elements of running a healthcare  organization because of the increased focus, and general need, for back office help with collection of post-care patient payments. Manual payment processing only compounds the problem, with extra costs and FTE hours figuring into the equation.

Of the three main challenges facing healthcare settings in 2018, this is one of the easiest to resolve thanks to today’s cutting-edge payment processing solutions that were developed with the needs of modern medical practices in mind. BillingTree has  advanced, best-of-breed healthcare payment processing solutions that allow patients to make post-care payments in the method that suits them best via the Internet or through an IVR system that is convenient and quick to use from the comfort of their own home or from a mobile device with no need to deal with banks or post offices.

Not only does this benefit the practice by enabling a higher proportion of revenue to be collected, but it also automates the system for a more streamlined approach to healthcare patient payments collection, thus ensuring better cash flow and allowing staff to be released to focus on other important healthcare and patient-related tasks.