As healthcare practice managers, you are already very busy managing patient flow, requests, and ensuring that the day-to-day necessary to treat patients is taken care of. So you don’t have extra time or energy to spend on what happens outside of your doctor’s office, for example if your billing company is doing its job.
What outsourced Medical Billing Services in California they provide?
Even within the field of medical billing, there are many sub-disciplines and supporting billing processes. Not all outsourced billing services offer the same services and responsibilities. For example, some may offer a full A-to-B revenue cycle management service, while others may focus only on specific billing services, such as billing compliance, claims escalation, or settlement of complaints.
How soon can they start processing complaints?
In most cases, it’s not as simple as outsourcing the Medical Billing Services in California showing up and taking over the medical billing process with a handshake. There will undoubtedly be some delay as they integrate into your operation and prepare to take over the billing process.
For example, they may not use the same software or compatible software, or they may practice billing, compliance, or financial reporting in a completely different way. Either way, it’s best to be patient during this time to allow for a personalized solution that doesn’t disrupt your practice.
Typically, it can take 30-60 days to fully transition to outsourcing your medical billing.
Staff training and expertise
This information may be more difficult to obtain as you will need to ask the medical billing service company to provide it to you. However, it is essential that their staff be professionally trained with the necessary skills for outsourcing medical billing services. Not only that, but their training must be continuously updated and refreshed to be in line with existing standards and practices. At the very least, they should also be aware of HIPAA guidelines and their impact on medical billing.
Do they manage current accounts receivable?
RAs are your existing insurance claims or medical billing processes in process. Depending on your arrangement, your medical billing service provider may or may not support your RAs when you hire them for your billing outsourcing.
Note that if they take over your existing claims, it could make the initial process of transitioning to outsourced billing more complex. They might not be used to working or handling complaints the same way you are, which will require some form of onboarding or conversion.
If you decide to run your own RAs, just be prepared for your in-house and outsourced Medical Billing Services in California to run concurrently for at least a few months.
Understanding your outsourced medical billing service provider’s reporting practices is important for a number of reasons. First of all, regular and detailed reports will help you keep up to date with what’s going on with your Medical Billing Services in California and how it affects your revenue cycle management.
Second, it is important to create common ground regarding responsibilities and accountability between you and your billing outsourcing provider. Without this, it will be difficult to establish and confirm measures of success.
Important Questions to Ask Your Outsourced Medical Billing Provider
When you first engage an external medical billing company on behalf of your practice, you will have many questions. However, it is crucial to ask and get answers to the following questions to ensure that you receive an appropriate and worthy solution for your practice:
Which invoicing activities should remain in-house?
Depending on your needs and the capabilities of the provider, you may not be able to outsource all medical billing functions. For example, many practices prefer to keep customer support and relationship management in-house. So ask your provider how they can accommodate the unique situation your medical practice finds itself in for a healthy relationship.
Do they provide customer support?
If you retain control of certain billing activities, you may need technical or other assistance from your service provider. In this case, you’ll want to make sure that their availability suits your office hours and that the quality of their customer service is legit. If you want to outsource the entire billing process, you need to make sure they also have the ability to offer support to your patients.
How will they help you achieve your goals?
Besides all the typical benefits associated with outsourcing, there may be specific goals you want to achieve. For example, reduce error rates, improve revenue, improve patient experience, meet specific revenue goals, etc. A billing services company should have a clear vision and roadmap to help you achieve your goals.
Will it significantly affect your patients?
Ultimately, the satisfaction and well-being of your patients is the most important thing. If there are any changes that affect reimbursement and the claims process for your patients, you need to be aware of them so you can communicate them clearly. This will help avoid any misunderstandings between patients and your practice and allow for a smoother transition.
On its own, medical billing is a complex, full-time job. If you want to spend more time tending to your practice and patient care needs, it might be time to cut the fat and outsource your medical billing needs. After all, those operating in healthcare have far more pressing concerns in mind, such as the health and well-being of their patients.
Fortunately, your firm can benefit from outsourcing in different ways, depending on your priorities and needs. Not all practices are the same, and your billing solution should be designed to help you achieve your goals and present a united healthcare practice to the outside world.