You are the judge for our monthly Medical Billing Tip of the Month contest! Listed below are the three top tips submitted this month (out of the many great ideas we received!). Just read them over and then post on our Facebook page which number is your choice for Medical Billing Tip of the Month. You can also post your choice in the Comments box here on our blog. Either way, be sure to vote before the deadline of Thursday, March 1! The winner will receive a $250 American Express Gift Card and the acclaim of their peers. Here are the candidates:
#1 Educate Staff and Patients on Patient Collections
The most important part of billing is education: staff AND patients (in our case, parents, since we’re a pediatric therapy group.) When I verify eligibility and benefits online, I print a copy for the parent and explain deductibles, co-insurance, co-pays, and benefit limits. We do this both for new patients and for calendar year plans where deductibles re-set on January 1st.
When I need to ask for a payment toward their deductible up front rather than after receiving an EOB affirming the patient responsibility for deductible, they’re not only much more willing to pay, but they pay with a smile. It’s much easier to collect from an informed patient, especially when they see it in black and white straight from their insurance carrier.
We collected on deductibles this past January from many patients and had no complaints or reservations about paying out of pocket because they’d been informed properly and professionally by us here prior to their visit.
#2 Keep a Logbook to Insure You Bill All Vaccines & Labs
Are your Physicians & Medical Assistants charging all the Injections/vaccines/ in-office lab tests that are performed daily? Or is your physician paying for the products used for your patients/staff injections or in-office labs?
Do you keep & review a log of your supply usage? If not, chances are you will find revenue if you start keeping manual logs and start reviewing your product usage.
Here is the process we perform in our office:
We keep a logbook for each medication/vaccination/lab product the practice purchases. Write patient name, date & clinical staff performing the test under the appropriate product tab in the book
1) Have the current logbook available to the auditor for review monthly or weekly of your product usage
2) Review the log and your patients account: was the injection billed, was the administration of the injection billed appropriately was the appropriate DX code linked? Was the finger stick billed/ was the lab draw fee billed?
3) Post-injury tetanus vaccine will pay higher than just a booster tetanus vaccine; link appropriate DX.
4) How about in-office lab tests: lipids. A1c, pregnancy tests, urine tests, PT, etc.?
5) I have found that staff have performed some self tests; our office does allow this, however staff are required to pay the practice for the cost of the product used. Before, we had staff just borrowing products for self use!
6) I have also found that since we started logging office tests in the book, we are now capturing all charges appropriately for billing.
7) Staff are to enter wastage also.
I recently reviewed our flu vaccine log and found my staff/physicians & billers missed charging for approximately $6,000! (This revenue was found: staff usage not paid for, missed administration fees, vaccines not entered onto billing ticket so biller never even knew to bill.)
Keep a tracking log to train staff & physicians to limit errors in the coming months. I guarantee if you start to keep a logbook for supply usage, you will find revenue.
3 Keep Up with Insurance A/R in Kareo
I keep up with Insurance A/R by clicking on
Aging by Insurance>
The AR comes up with the list of insurance companies divided by 31-60, 61-90, or 91-120 days.
All I have to do is click on any of the insurance on the list and it takes me directly to the patient’s unpaid account.
I click on the visit and review the account. I can review all the notes that were entered using the action key. The notes usually let me know the status of the account and whether I need to call the insurance company.
Which one is your top choice? Vote now on our Facebook page or in the Comments box on this blog. You have until Thursday, March 1, to vote! We’ll announce the winner in our March newsletter.