Patient care tends to get the most attention when it comes to the healthcare industry, but it is the administrative and business side of the medical practice that makes all this care possible. Revenue cycle management today is much more than billing and collecting payment. As the industry continues to grow, the time-consuming, manual processes of the past take away valuable hours and leave too much room for error.
If you own or manage a healthcare practice, finding ways to increase revenue can be challenging. Events in recent years, especially the COVID-19 pandemic, have made it even more important for medical practitioners to reevaluate their business operations. Fortunately, there are several tactics you can use to maximize earnings without sacrificing your quality of care and ensuring your business is as successful as possible.
One of the most effective ways to increase the revenue of your clinic practice is by streamlining the billing process. The more efficient and accurate the billing system, the better chance of collecting payments quickly and accurately. Some practices opt for outsourcing their medical billing, hiring a revenue manager who has the right expertise to handle even the most complex of financial problems.
If you opt for doing it yourself, or with your own system, make sure to review all coding and documentation regularly and update it as needed. This helps avoid any discrepancies that could lead to payment delays or rejections from insurance companies or patients. That includes offering a way for the system to verify insurance or payment options for every patient who signs up for an appointment, so that your office is not left with trying to chase down owed payments.
Also, consider investing in software that automates important aspects of your billing process such as tracking payments from insurance companies or sending invoices directly to patients. For many doctors, patient collections are a headache, and many physicians only collect about 60% of what is due. The right technology can help with your revenue cycle management and potentially get you quicker reimbursements. Many software programs are built to not only simplify the workflow, but efficiently provide correct information.
Inefficient claims management is one of the top reasons healthcare practices lose out on much-needed revenue. Claims that spend weeks or even months to clear can cause cash flow issues and hurt your bottom line. Denied claims lead to even bigger problems, as staff has to rework a claim every single time and appeal.
In order to ensure clean claims, your office staff needs clear workflows and system. That includes understanding each payer’s procedures and expectations, as well as tracking each claim throughout the accounts receivable process.
Missed filing deadlines are one of the most common issues with unpaid claims. Part of tracking should involve office staff understanding all filing deadlines or having a system that tracks the different payer contracts. This makes it easier to file corrected claims quickly, saving you time and money.
Contrary to popular belief, patient retention is just as important –– if not more –– than attracting new patients for increasing the revenue of your practice. Establishing long-term relationships with existing patients has been shown to result in greater overall satisfaction for both parties involved. Patients get better service and doctors have reliable sources of repeat business.
Patient satisfaction can help increase your revenue more than you think. This one factor has become a significant measure of every medical practice’s success. Luckily, some of the same strategies you can use to automate and streamline your own office also help with satisfaction. Software that helps your office manage patient information, payment collection, and cooperation between care teams and front offices all increase the quality of your services.
To ensure patient retention, make sure you prioritize quality patient service by providing a positive experience throughout every interaction with patients, from setting up appointments via phone or online to providing follow-up care after treatments or procedures. With the right processes, you can rest assured knowing you have won their loyalty and potential referrals.
Having an online presence is essential for any type of business, especially doctor offices. By having a website for your practice, potential patients who may not know about your services can gain access to vital information such as business hours, contact information, location, and reviews, allowing them to easily find out everything they need before making an appointment at your office.
Besides a beautiful and functional practice website, there are a few other strategies you can use to help your business. Developing a digital marketing strategy is key to boosting your clinic’s business. Strategies such as SEO optimization, content creation, email marketing campaigns or social media ads can also help drive traffic towards your website and ultimately generate leads for new patients who may potentially become long-term patients for increased revenues. Creating a brand around yourself also helps boost your authority, and the trust potential patients will have in your expertise.
Be careful not to rely on certain aspects of marketing, such as flashy advertisements and gimmicks that do not fit your professional practice. Your marketing efforts should reflect you, your practice, your ideal patients, and accurately portray the services you offer.
There are many ways in which inefficient or outdated processes can lead to lost revenue and increased financial struggles within your practice. Luckily, the solutions are not so difficult. By streamlining billing processes, fixing your claims process, focusing on patient retention, and improving your online presence, clinics can ensure they are maximizing their profits while providing quality services to their patients at the same time! Ultimately these strategies create win-win situations where everyone benefits from increased revenues due to higher patient satisfaction ratings and improved visibility online.
Creating an effective revenue management plan can be difficult, especially for doctors. Not everyone has the time or resources to do so, and patients always come first. The experienced team at Good Stewart Consulting work with you to implement the right revenue management systems for your needs, so you can go back to treating your patients. Our healthcare fractional COOs have years of experience helping other healthcare practitioners with their ineffective management systems. Contact us today and see how we can assist you!