Tag: billing

Provider interest in RCM tools growing, survey shows

 

 

Dive Brief:

  • Providers are increasingly turning to payment technologies to collect patient bills and improve the customer experience, a new Billing Tree survey finds.
  • Respondents ranked “collecting once the patient has left the facility” as the No. 1 payment challenge in 2018, followed by “patient’s inability to pay” and “lack of payment channels.” Rounding out the top six were “disputes over amount billed,” “knowing the correct amount to bill/due after insurance” and “compliance challenges.” The least important challenge was “posting to the database.”
  • The top two factors affecting choice of payment processing services were HIPAA compliance and the price of payment processing. Half of the respondents were collection firms, one-fifth were long-term care facilities and the rest were multi- and single-site businesses.

 

Dive Insight:

Efforts to boost hospital finances are fueling activity in revenue cycle management as more providers look for ways to work with patients on payment plans. According to a Connance survey, 70% of providers claim it takes more than a month to collect from patients. A 2017 Advisory Board analysis found the average 350-bed hospital lost up to $22 million in revenue due to revenue cycle issues.

The major EHR vendors, as well as other third-party players, are investing in RCM solutions as demand for services increases. In an earnings call earlier this year, Cerner officials highlighted RCM as a good growth opportunity, along with population health. Allscripts CEO Paul Black has also touted strong sales of RCM products.

The trend is also spurring consolidation as vendors vie for market share. In February, Chicago-based R1 RCM snapped up Intermedix’s healthcare division, which includes physician and emergency services RCM, practice management and analytics. The acquisition increased R1’s capability to integrate revenue cycles across care settings, the company said at the time, citing Intermedix’s more than 15,000 providers nationwide.

Survey respondents showed a willingness to accept a wide range of payment types. More than nine in 10 accepted health savings accounts and flexible spending accounts, 82% accepted paper checks or money orders and about 73% accepted credit/debit payments and electronic checks.

The survey also shows growing use of automation, with nearly two-thirds reporting acceptance of web portal payments. In addition, 27% offered payment by an interactive voice response system and the same percentage offered payment by text.

Asked what payment technology they would most likely add in the next 12 months, more than half (54.5%) said web payments. Not surprising given the growth in text payments, more than a quarter planned to deploy text notifications for payments and billing notifications.

“Technology service providers continue to play a critical role in helping organizations of all kinds that are striving to collect payments in a timely and efficient manner to maximize revenues, control operational costs, while also mitigating compliance risk,” Billing Tree says. “Beyond simply processing transactions, industry-leading payment processors partner strategically with their clients to provide education and guidance on best practices to maintain regulatory compliance.”

Doctors speak out: CMS gets 15,314 comments on proposed physician Medicare changes

 

doctor patient consult

 

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) asked for comments on its proposed physician fee schedule and boy, oh boy, did it get them: 15,314 of them.

As the comment period ended at 5 p.m. yesterday on the government proposal, CMS got pages and pages of reaction, including a strong call from many for the agency to abandon a controversial proposal to consolidate evaluation and management (E/M) billing codes because of fears it will leave physicians who treat high-acuity patients underpaid.

While CMS proposed the change to streamline documentation and give doctors more time with patients, one physician group said the result would be paying doctors the same amount for office visits to evaluate patients with a case of sniffles as those for complex brain cancer.

Comments came from physician groups, individual doctors, patient groups and lawmakers.

In a 136-page letter, the American Medical Association, the country’s largest physician group, asked CMS to delay action on the proposed code change to allow a work group to develop an alternative by 2020. “The proposed restructuring has generated a groundswell of opposition from individual physicians and nearly every physician and health professional organization in the country, including those whose members are projected to see increases in their Medicare payments,” wrote James L. Madara, M.D., the AMA’s executive vice president and CEO.

A bipartisan group of 90 lawmakers also sent a letter to CMS on Friday urging the agency not to implement the change. “We are concerned that the proposal to consolidate these services devalues the expertise, clinical decision-making, and time of physicians who treat patients with complex conditions,” the members of Congress wrote.

The plan would collapse payment rates for eight office visit services for new and established patients down to two each. Doctors also offered comments. “This is a ridiculous proposal that will only be a detriment to patients and providers alike,” said one anonymous commenter.

A geriatrician who cares for patients with multiple, complicated medical issues said he could see no benefit from the proposal. “It does not make sense to assign the same payment for both a 15-minute visit for a 20-year-old with no known issues and no complaints and for a 40-minute visit for an 80-year-old with a multitude of acute and chronic illnesses,” he wrote.

CMS issued the proposed rule in July to update the Medicare physician fee schedule and outline changes for year three of the physician payment program implemented under MACRA. CMS is now expected to review the comments and will issue a final rule this fall.

Aprima 2016 Billing Training Class 5.9.2018

 

Aprima® 2016 billing training will teach practices how to configure the batch statement job and the statement workflow. The class will also show new features in track superbills, track payments and responsible party.

Recommended attendees:

  • – Practice administrators
  • – Billing staff

 

View the course syllabus to see learning objectives.

 

Complete the form below to sign up for this event.







Aprima 2016 Billing Training Class 4.25.2018

 

Aprima® 2016 billing training will teach practices how to configure the batch statement job and the statement workflow. The class will also show new features in track superbills, track payments and responsible party.

Recommended attendees:

  • – Practice administrators
  • – Billing staff

 

View the course syllabus to see learning objectives.

 

Complete the form below to sign up for this event.







Aprima 2016 Billing Training Class 4.11.2018

 

Aprima® 2016 billing training will teach practices how to configure the batch statement job and the statement workflow. The class will also show new features in track superbills, track payments and responsible party.

Recommended attendees:

  • – Practice administrators
  • – Billing staff

 

View the course syllabus to see learning objectives.

 

Complete the form below to sign up for this event.







Aprima 2016 Billing Training Class 3.14.2018

 

Aprima® 2016 billing training will teach practices how to configure the batch statement job and the statement workflow. The class will also show new features in track superbills, track payments and responsible party.

Recommended attendees:

  • – Practice administrators
  • – Billing staff

 

View the course syllabus to see learning objectives.

 

Complete the form below to sign up for this event.








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