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Medical Billing

Why It’s Time to Consider Outsourcing Your Medical Billing

Are administrative duties bogging down the way you run your practice? Many physicians are caught up in a cycle of devoting heavy hours and resources to medical billing that could be applied to providing innovative care and service. Being in a perpetual state of trying to catch up with outstanding patient bills does not place a practice in a strategic position for growth.

The need to push so many resources toward revenue management can drastically reduce a practice’s ability to grow and thrive. It can also result in lower levels of patient happiness and staff satisfaction. These things can set the tone for how a practice is perceived. Unfortunately, many doctors continue to push towards keeping payment collections in the office. They believe that this allows the practice a greater level of control. However, having to directly supervise or hire a medical office manager to supervise billing specialists only puts more of a burden on medical practices.

What does it really mean to manage a practice today? Physicians already spend more than 16 percent of their working hours on administrative duties. Research tells us that doctors who spend more time on administrative duties like medical billing have lower rates of career satisfaction. Factors like the implementation of electronic records and privacy risks associated with file management are behind why doctors feel burdened and unsatisfied in their work. In-house medical billing only increases administrative tasks.

It might be time to get billing out of your office. Outsourcing collection duties to revenue cycle management (RCM) firms gives you the freedom to invest time and resources back into your practice. Are you not sure if you are ready to take the plunge and outsource revenue management? Let’s look at some of the practical reasons why you may have simply outgrown in-house medical billing.

Why It’s Time to Consider Outsourcing Your Medical Billing

How much would an additional nurse, scheduling specialist, marketing manager or patient liaison make in the operation of your practice? These are roles that generate meaningful engagement and patient retention. Unfortunately, if you are bogged down with managing a payment staff, you may not have the revenue to hire additional staff.

An internal payment department for a smaller practice is one of the most difficult things to manage. These positions generally have notoriously high turnover rates. The repetition and lack of growth involved in these roles make it hard to keep talent. What’s more, professionals with the sophisticated skills needed for medical billing and medical coding prefer the salaries and perks that go along with working for larger firms. The result is that you end up putting lots of energy and resources toward maintaining a system that your patients will never see or benefit from.

You Want to Reduce Phone Calls

How many times has your front-desk staff been forced to put a patient on hold or ask a patient to wait patiently while they deal with bill-related calls? Is your office staff constantly being interrupted by questions related to charges all day long? Utilizing a third-party RCM company means that calls are directed to experts who can handle them instead of to your main phone number. This provides your office with an instant boost in the way it manages customer service.

You Want to Leave Security Worries Behind

The digitization of payments and records has created an entirely new kind of headache for physicians. Data breaches cost medical practices the most — almost $6.5 million per year — compared to all other industries. These breaches can affect organizations for years. Unfortunately, the responsibility of keeping payment records secure falls on you when you handle patient bills in-house.

Outsourcing to a larger company with the tech and security in place to protect patient data can take this very large responsibility off of your plate. In addition to passing on the work of managing bills, you’re also passing on the responsibility of safeguarding data. This can free up the investment you’d have to put into expensive IT systems necessary for guarding financial data belonging to patients.

You Want to Reduce Errors

Outsourcing patient bills can drastically improve the quality of service you provide to your patients because they won’t have to deal with as many errors. Third-party firms that specialize in payment intake have intricate, automated systems in place that scan for simple errors that could bog down the payment process. You probably already know that things like transposed numbers can keep a claim in limbo for weeks or months. In fact, one internal employee could lose an entire day simply trying to get to the bottom of why a claim is being denied. An outside firm can provide you with fewer denials, fewer pending claims and fewer disputes. Your patients are happier, you’re getting paid faster and your staff never has to spend hours tracking down claims.

You Want Cash Flow to Be Smoother and More Robust

Bottlenecks in cash flow can be detrimental to a practice’s bottom line. It can be very hard to wait for bills to be paid when you have lease payments and staff paychecks to think about. The productivity that is achieved through third-party bill management means faster turnaround times on claims. It’s not uncommon to wait up to two months to see cash intake using in-office methods. An RCM firm can often turn around full payment within seven days.

Is It Time to Rethink the Way Your Office Processes Revenue?

Your needs may have outgrown the way your office handles payments. The good news is that upgrading to a better way isn’t difficult. Outsourcing payment processing to an RCM firm is an option that’s available to practices of all sizes.

You’re turning your practice back into a space that’s focused on the patient when you outsource the management of patient bills to a third-party firm. This creates positive results for both your patients and your staff members. Now’s the time to explore how outsourcing one of your biggest and most frustrating tasks to a revenue cycle management firm can help your practice to thrive.  Schedule a demo to discover how you can relax yourself by outsourcing your medical billing.

The Physicians Lifeguard