Here’s your chance: You decide the winner for our June 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 Wednesday, May 30! The winner will receive a $250 American Express Gift Card and the acclaim of their peers. Here are the candidates:
1. Check for Symptoms to Support the Diagnosis
When your providers send the Superbills to be entered, sometimes the level of service isn’t justified by the diagnosis that is chosen. When they spend the alotted time with the patient and you are trying to find justification for the level of service, make sure to check the documentation for SYMPTOMS.
Every patient comes to the office with one or more symptoms or issues that need attention, for example:
If the patient is coming in for anxiety or depression, look for symptoms as well. There may be insomnia, weight loss, decreased appetite, lethargy, mood changes, sleepiness, exhaustion, etc.
In other words, if you spend the time, as you would with a patient with depression, use those symptoms. Don’t forget to make sure that these codes or diagnosis are documented (don’t guess or make them up!).
Also, don’t give a patient a definitive diagnosis without justification. For example:
Diabetes Mellitus: Don’t flag a patient with DM until it is definitive. Code those symptoms documented, such as tiredness, increased urination, weight loss or gain, altered mental status, increased thirst.
2. Utilize the Various “Tabs” in the “Find Patient/Edit Patient” Section of Kareo to Increase Efficiency and Revenue
To access your patient profile, Kareo has several areas for your convenience and preference. You will see it under short cuts, tool bar, the F7 speed key, the choice is yours. Once you find your patient, it will take you directly to “Edit Patient.”
Under the “Blue Bar” you will see several tabs:
General | Cases | Alerts | Account | Documents | Tasks | Log |
1. The “General” tab gives you an overview of that patient’s account. From here you can edit any information that is outlined OR you can add any information that is missing such as a phone number for home, work or mobile number. The more information that we have, the more efficient our billing and collection efforts are.
2. The “Cases” tab gives you all the cases that are associated with this patient; you have the option to “Add a Case.” Our clinic assigns everybody a “Self Pay” (no insurance linked to it) to use for charges that will not be billed to insurance such as: No show & cancellation charges, over the counter purchase of items that is not covered by insurance etc. This eliminates a rejected claim should items without a CPT code be billed in error.
3. The “Alerts” tab is great to use for any pertinent information specific to that patient, and will notify you or another person of that “Alert” once you access the patient, depending on the options you choose. When the “Case” tab is accessed you can type the “Alert” specific to that patient and then choose some or all of the 6 options that you would like this to appear. This has helped us tremendously by keeping the lines of communications open, obtaining information from the patient if needed when they are here for the appointment, as well as insurance specific information needed to eliminate rejected claims.
4. The “Documents” tab allows you to store documents you have scanned in or attached that are specific to this patient’s profile. This is great for ID cards, intake forms, prescriptions, authorizations…The sky is the limit!
5. The “Tasks” tab is a favorite. Some of the ways we use this are to follow up on insurance for reprocessed claims or as a follow up to patients on prescriptions. Anything that you would put on your desk calendar or on a yellow legal pad could go in this section. You can assign it to any person who is set-up in Kareo, issue a due date and identify if the task is related to a patient, encounter or payment. These tasks can also be prioritized as you will see within the Task section. On the Kareo home screen you will see on the “To Do List” the tasks will appear as part of your daily activities. There is a hyper link so that you can easily access your tasks and complete them. There is a “Tasks” option at the very top of Kareo on the tool bar and can easily be accessed.
6. The “Log” tab is fairly new. This tab keeps a log of any current actions that occurred on this patient’s record. The log will show the information changed by: Time, User and Description. This will help the internal staff track what and when the changes have been made to the patient’s profile.
All of these tabs are great tools to utilize as an aid to help increase revenue by reducing rejected and denied claims as well as a form of communication within the staff.
3. Organize Patient Accounts for Collections in Kareo
I have created a way to systematically move patient accounts into buckets for our patient collections. I created collection categories and named them with numbers so that the collectors can see the list of collection buckets in order as to how the collection process works. From there I customized each category for statement messages, alerts, and if a statement should be sent or not. Then when we run our collection report, all the accounts are in the right bucket. Form this report we call or send letters, then tag the account the next step for next month.
2 Automated payment reminder – this is an auto call using a 3rd party vendor
3 Delinquency letter
And so on. The method you use for working your patient balances would be how you create your collection categories. See example below:
Which tip is your top choice? Vote now on our Facebook page or in the Comments box on this blog. You have until Wednesday, May 30, to vote! We’ll announce the winner in our June newsletter.