As we reach the tail end of the first quarter, clinics should be especially focused on collecting co-pays. Most patients have not met their deductibles for the year, which means that the chance of having copayments or even an outstanding balance is higher. To help avoid a loss of revenue and be transparent with your patients, here are some tips to better collections:
Train the front desk.
Arguably the most important step to co-pay collection: well-trained front staff. They are the face of your clinic, and they will have the most interaction with your patients. When financial questions come up, they will most likely be handling them. Make sure you have an extensive training process for new employees so they know exactly how to handle those situations. Schedule yearly training sessions for a refresher and give out any new information that will also help the staff feel prepared for those sensitive situations. Giving them scripts also helps them feel more comfortable with asking for payment.
Let patients know in advance.
As long as you have the correct insurance information for the patient, you should be able to see beforehand if a co-pay might be due after their upcoming appointment. Additionally, if they have an outstanding balance, you can let them know that they will need to pay that before they can proceed. Clear communication is an important part of the provider-patient relationship and helps patients build up trust with your clinic.
Have referrals or financial resources on hand.
With the rising cost of healthcare, some patients may need some additional help with paying their balance. If you have financial counseling available, make sure the front desk has that contact information ready. Your clinic may offer other financial resources such as financial aid applications, so having the application on hand or directions typed up shows the patient you’re there to help.
Whether you’re struggling with training on collections or denied claims, a failing revenue cycle puts a strain on your whole medical office. Outsource Receivables Inc. has the experience to evaluate your clinic and improve on both administration and billing issue