When your clinic is growing and profitable, so is Outsource Receivables. That’s why one of ORI’s value added services is strategic planning for revenue cycle management. We can utilize the same revenue cycle management data collected from providers and payers to project earnings, growth and potential for savings realized by technology and process improvements.

During times of constant change, planning for the future can take a back seat. Moreover, when you are unsure about what the future holds, how can you work towards it? With ever evolving reimbursement methodologies in medical billing, and changing regulations and requirements, how does one plan?

If the only certainty is change, then bank on it! Moreover, have a vision that is accountable to change, but doesn’t change. Have a mission that embraces uncertainty and leads your practice into the future. Each administrator needs their own mental framework for being effective under the pressures of change and thriving in an environment you simply can’t control. Believing in your dreams and goals, clearly defining your goals, and doing what it takes to win. Lastly, but most importantly, remain adaptable to change and welcome the opportunities that come with change.

An example of how Outsource Receivables handles the rapidly changing healthcare environment is ORI’s approach to information technology and systems for revenue cycle management. What are the interface options for your primary software systems? Is the company you work with willing to work with other vendors that offer auxiliary solutions their system does not? Is the system on a hosted environment and what control do you have over that environment? Is the application web based and accessible anywhere there is internet service? ORI is intent on identifying  applications that have an open architecture that enable interfacing with other software. Moreover, systems hosted in a secure web environment offer greater flexibility, versatility, and easier upgrades than hosted solutions or systems that must be installed on workstations or servers. ORI’s culture of collaboration also applies to vendors. If vendors are not willing to “play in the sandbox” and work on solutions that meet client needs, we will look elsewhere. If a vendor is unable to collaborate with other services and products to solve problems we will continue our search.

The next big question is what type of service and support model is offered? Can you really talk to someone? Is there a ticketing system for follow through? Do you have an assigned customer service person that can get to know your business needs? When things don’t go right is there someone there to help your office out or are you going to be on your own? These factors are really important when you are trying to continuously build and improve your technology infrastructure and service model. Imagine the business benefits of a vendor that adds value, rather than creating a liability.

Another big issue is contracts and upfront costs. What are the contract terms and are you tied into a system whether it continues to meet your needs or not? Do you have major upfront costs that make moving to another system almost impossible? Do the terms of the contract lock you into other vendors and services that may be unreliable or not price competitive? If a product is strong and the company backs its promises, they shouldn’t need a 5 year agreement from you!

ORI assesses systems periodically and is in the process of reviewing and upgrading all systems in 2013 and 2014. With ICD-10 on the horizon every practice needs systems that have flexibility and can adapt to change. A clinics strategic move from “legacy” systems that lack flexibility and nuanced access to data is a requirement in the current medical billing industry. Finding EMR products that meet the requirements laid out above and are easy for staff and physicians to learn is key. Many new tools are now available and no single software will meet every need. That’s why having the interfacing, support, contracting, and overall flexibility to meet ever changing needs is no longer optional.

Now is a time of constant change and planning for the future cannot take a back seat! Change is certain and one way to bank on it is identifying revenue cycle management IT solutions that meet the challenges outlined and adapt to change. It will enable you to focus on your vision; following your mission and moving the needle on your long term goals.

ORI’s expertise in medical billing, clinic efficiency, and cash flow provides a team of experts who can help with strategic planning. Not only can ORI assist with assessing systems at your clinic. ORI can also work with clinics to set production goals, create financial goal planning, evaluate a return on investment for an electronic medical records system, and provide strategies to streamline your accounting systems.

Outsource Receivables Inc. provides revenue cycle management expertise to surgical, family practice, specialty clinics, therapy offices, and mental health clinics throughout the Upper Midwest. Located in Minnesota, we have a special focus on clinics in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Madison, Milwaukee and Des Moines.

Of course, there are always areas of expertise beyond our reach and for those situations we offer a network of trusted experts we will plug into. We’ll dig deeper into these other strategic planning areas in the next few months.

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