New Research: Is the ACA Impacting the Independent Practice?

Lea Chatham August 20th, 2014

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By Scott E. Rupp

Great American Physician SurveyThe new normal means a move toward patient-focused care rather than volume-based care driven by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Tweet this Kareo story

Among those to join the parade toward a system based on more universal care are more than eight million people who signed up for coverage through the ACA during the initial annual open enrollment period, Oct. 1, 2013, to March 3, 2014, according to U.S. News and World Report.

 

 

Of those to enroll in plans throughout the US, only 13% previously had coverage and likely received regular care from their providers. Of those to enroll in the new plans, at least 85% of individuals qualify for some form of federal assistance, including advanced premium tax credits to help pay their premiums. Here’s the quick overview of ACA enrollees:

  • 8,019,763: People who have signed up for the ACA
  • 4,301,656: Female enrollees
  • 3,633,920: Male enrollees
  • 2.2 million: Enrollees ages 18-34
  • 1.37 million: Enrollees ages 35-44
  • 1.81 million: Enrollees ages 45-54
  • 2 million: Enrollees ages 55-64

Interestingly enough, even though more than eight million people having signed up, 46% of physicians say ACA is having no effect on their practices, according to the 2014 Great American Physician Survey conducted by Physicians Practice magazine and sponsored by Kareo. Of the 1,311 physicians to take the survey, only 2% of physicians said that federal healthcare reform has boosted their businesses tremendously.

Unfortunately, many practices were counting on the federal exchanges and more covered individuals to help grow their practices. They had hoped that more covered individuals would mean more business for their practices; ACA was supposed to provide clear opportunities for growth, they thought. As with all small businesses, growth is important. According to the Physicians Practice survey, 79% of physicians said growing their businesses is a high priority, but the rhetoric about patients flooding the system has not materialized.

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Physicians don’t feel much different about the actual exchange plans offered and the ACA program as a whole. More than 40% say the program has had no impact on their practices and only 38% of physicians say the impact of seeing patients covered by exchange plans has been minimal to this point. Actually, only 6% of physicians say the exchanges have had significant impact on their practices, resulting in them getting more patients than they can accommodate.

For the 43% of practices that are accepting exchange insurance plans, there are some unique challenges though, Kaiser Health News reports. Specifically, verifying that these patients have insurance can be a time-consuming task that can take hours. For exchange patients, practices must call the insurer to make sure the patient has paid; if not, the insurance company can refuse to pay the doctor for the visit, or come back later and recoup a payment it made.

While ACA is now part of the fabric that physicians face and must navigate, there currently seems to be a collective holding of the breath by physicians as they wait to see how reform will affect their practices in the long term. In the meantime, they are dealing with more immediate problems, like meaningful use and the switch to ICD-10. And, they are trying to manage an independent practice in the face of what many of them deem too much third party intrusion.

About the Author

SRuppScott E. Rupp is a writer and an award-winning journalist focused on healthcare technology. He also works as a public relations executive, and has spent time working in house with a major electronic health record/practice management vendor. In addition to writing for a variety of publications, Scott also offers his insights on healthcare technology and its leaders on his site, Electronic Health Reporter.

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9 Steps to Improve Patient Collections

Lea Chatham August 19th, 2014

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Watch Patient Collections 101 NowPatient A/R has been steadily increasing. If it hasn’t already, it will soon reach as much as 30% of your practice’s total accounts receivable. In addition, patients are paying a larger share of their healthcare costs—as much as 25-30%–out of pocket. Unfortunately, once a patient leaves your practice, the chances of collecting begin to fall to as low as 40%. In fact, many practices only collect about 20% of patient balances.Tweet this Kareo story

 

Use these proven strategies to improve your patient collections:

  1. Have a Clear Financial Policy: The great thing about a written policy is that it establishes clear responsibilities for both parties ahead of time. Yours should tell patients exactly what you expect in terms of who pays what and when. This policy should be provided to every new patient and to all patients once a year.
  2. Check Eligibility: Verifying patient eligibility and benefits prior to the visits gives you invaluable information. While the level of detail varies from payer to payer, you should always be able to find out if the patient is covered and what the copay amount is.
  3. Collect Copays at Check-in: Not only is collecting copays at check in a great way to reduce your patient A/R, it also keeps you compliant with your payer contracts, many of which require this. Setting up a process for this also reduces your collection overhead by eliminating statements and other follow up for patients who only have a copay.
  4. Collect Balance Due at Checkout: If you have enough information from the payer to collect co-insurance or the balance due on the deductible then do so. If not, then make sure the patient knows their responsibility and is prepared to pay that balance.
  5. Set Up Credit Card on File (CCOF): By putting CCOF in place, you can collect outstanding balances without the need to send statements. Patients need to sign an authorization form that provides the credit information and maximum amount to be charged along with a time period for which the authorization is valid.
  6. Compress Your Statement Cycle: Send patient statements as soon as you know the patient due amount. Don’t wait for a monthly cycle. Monthly billing lengthens your A/R, and it reduces your chances of getting paid.
  7. Offer Statement Options: Offer patients the option of paper or electronic statements. Allow patients to choose the option that makes sense for them. You’re more likely get paid, and using electronic statements reduces your expenses as well.
  8. Provide Online Bill Pay: Over half of consumers pay other bills online, so why not yours. Online bill pay is fast, easy, and secure. Check with your vendor for online payment options.
  9. Consider Deposits for High-Dollar Procedures: Often, high-dollar procedures in the outpatient setting are planned. This gives you time to get authorization and gather more details from the payer about what the patient portion might be. Then, sit down with the patient to review coverage and collect a deposit or estimated charge.

In such uncertain times, you can’t afford to let any money you are owed slip through the cracks. A strong, efficient patient collections process can help ensure you get paid. To learn more about how to improve your patient collections, check out the recorded webinar Patient Collections 101 with expert Mary Pat Whaley.

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Free Webinar: Meaningful Use Roadside Assistance

Lea Chatham August 14th, 2014

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Register NowAAA for MU: Roadside Assistance for the EHR Incentive Program
August 20, 2014
10:00 AM PT, 1:00 PM ET

 

 

Much has changed in 2014 for Meaningful Use (MU)—and been changed back again, temporarily. Many practices have questions about how to participate effectively. Physicians and practice managers are concerned about putting undo burden on themselves and other staff, tracking and reporting accurately, and avoiding an audit. Find out how to get the incentive, avoid the penalty, and participate in MU through lessons learned from other EHR users.

In this webinar, meaningful use expert Barbara Drury will share her AAA advice:

  • A(dopt): Experiences learned from MU1 and MU2 EHR users
  • A(ttest): Issues to address during and after yearly attestations
  • A(udit): Housekeeping and     preparation experiences to date
  • Quality opportunities beyond MU

This is your chance to make sure you are doing MU right—from Adopting through Attestation and Audits!

Register Now

 About the Speaker

Join Barbara Drury to find out what you need to know about meaningful use nowBarbara Drury, BA, FHIMSS, is President of Pricare Inc., an independent health information technology consulting firm founded in 1982. She frequently lectures and writes about the impact of office-based computer systems and electronic medical record systems for entities such as medical societies, healthcare organizations, and others. Ms. Drury served as an appointee to the ONC’s Technical Expert Panel on Unintended Consequences of HIT Adoption. She has achieved Fellow Status with the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and has served on the HIMSS Public Policy Committee and the Davies Ambulatory Award Committee. Ms. Drury is also a frequent speaker at the HIMSS Annual Conference and is the recipient of the December 2004 and the April 2009 Spirit of HIMSS award.

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August Newsletter Is All about EHRs and MU

Lea Chatham August 12th, 2014

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The August edition of the Kareo Getting Paid Newsletter highlights the use of EHRs and strategies for managing Meaningful Use and PQRS. The newsletter also provides a chance to discover upcoming events, news, and resources from Kareo. Plus, you’ll learn about how to register for our upcoming free educational webinar, AAA for MU: Roadside Assistance for the EHR Incentive Program, presented by Barbara Drury. Read all this and more now!Tweet this Kareo story

Read Kareo Newsletter Now

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3 Practice “Accidents” along the EHR Road to Meaningful Use

Lea Chatham August 11th, 2014

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Register for free webinar to learn the latest on MUAs we continue on the road to meaningful use, we’re beginning to see some of the day-to-day challenges more clearly. Here are three recent “accidents” I witnessed along this summer’s MU journey:

Practice 1
This doctor has been using the EHR for six months. The Practice Manager runs a report on MU1 measures to date. The physician’s ePrescribing numerator/denominators percentage is well below the requirement. After the practice manager contacted the provider, the physician said there was a problem whenever he tried to ePrescribe so he just wrote a paper script rather than telling someone.

What can we learn from this? MU reports can reveal more than just numerator/denominator calculations. In this “accident”, there was not a clear way for the MD to report the problem to a staff person or the vendor, not only putting MU in jeopardy but perpetuating all the “bad” things about handwritten scripts.

Practice 2
The practice was live on scheduling and billing for four months and providers were live on EHR for three months. Signed EHR notes are reviewed and have appropriate ICD codes for submitting claims. Insurance payments are being appropriately paid. The practice’s MU Champion runs a report on MU1 measures to date. None of the three providers have met the problem list threshold; two aren’t even remotely close.

What can we learn from this? It’s better to run the MU reports before you need good numbers so you can retrain users. In this “accident”, the providers had missed a step in the visit documentation process, which requires the provider to check a box that reads “Add to Problem List”. Missing this one little box had two major impacts: 1) the EPs could not meet MU measure on “maintain problem list”, and 2) any summary of care generated would have no problem list at all! Fortunately, by running the MU reports before they needed good MU numbers the providers were shown where to check the required box in plenty of time to fix both issues.

Practice 3
This practice uses ancillary staff (sonographers) and bills under the EP’s NPI. For pregnant patients, the sonographers perform a 3D ultrasound. During setup of the CPT/procedure tables, the practice created revenue categories; this procedure was assigned to the revenue category “OB”. The MU report was setup to exclude revenue category of “Ultrasounds” but to include “OB”. Running this report showed the 3D services because they were attached to “OB” revenue category and not “Ultrasound” revenue category. In this practice, an ultrasound visit by a sonographer happens immediately before an office visit by the physician. MU only allows one encounter per day per MD, so the sonographer 3D visits were over-inflating the denominator for the physician. By editing the revenue category and assigning the 3D to “Ultrasound”, the MU reports accurately reflected the physicians “office visits” by excluding ultrasounds.

What can we learn from this? Initial decisions are likely to have down-stream consequences that need to be changed. In this “accident”, while the original assignment of the complimentary 3D Ultrasound to revenue category “OB” made sense at the time, further mining of the data showed that it didn’t accurately reflect the physician’s services and needed to be in the “Ultrasound” revenue category to keep the MU reports accurate.  

Meaningful Use is a journey, not a destination, but sometimes the stops along the way show us other ways we can improve.Tweet this Kareo story

To learn more about some of the common “accidents” and get some roadside assistance to fix them, join me for my upcoming free webinar, AAA for MU: Roadside Assistance for the EHR Incentive Program.

About the Author

Register Now for th elatest updates on Meaningful UseBarbara Drury, BA, FHIMSS, is President of Pricare Inc., an independent health information technology consulting firm founded in 1982. She frequently lectures and writes about the impact of office-based computer systems and electronic medical record systems for entities such as medical societies, healthcare organizations, and others. Ms. Drury served as an appointee to the ONC’s Technical Expert Panel on Unintended Consequences of HIT Adoption. She has achieved Fellow Status with the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and has served on the HIMSS Public Policy Committee and the Davies Ambulatory Award Committee. Ms. Drury is also a frequent speaker at the HIMSS Annual Conference and is the recipient of the December 2004 and the April 2009 Spirit of HIMSS award.

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CME Webinar: CMS Incentive Programs Simplified for Physicians

Lea Chatham August 8th, 2014

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Watch CME Webinar NowCurrently, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) administers two programs that require eligible professionals (EPs) to document and report on data from patient encounters to avoid payment penalties and receive incentives. The two programs are Meaningful Use (MU) and the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). Both are intended to increase the use of electronic health records (EHRs) and improve patient outcomes. And both can impact your bottom line.

 

These programs are optional but the penalties add up over the next five years to nearly 10%. About 40% of physicians still don’t use an EHR and can’t participate. Many of these providers cite cost as a barrier. In addition,  nearly 17% of practices say EHR adoption and implementation is their biggest technology problem. Meeting MU requirements comes in a few spots below at 11%. For others, the reason for not participating is that the programs seem too complicated, and they don’t think it is worth the effort. If this is you, have you considered the long-term, big picture impact of the penalties or potential benefits to care and outcomes with an EHR.

In this free, physician CME webinar, HIT expert Joy Rios provides an overview of both programs and how you can use technology to align them and simplify your reporting processes. She’ll show you how you can participate, avoid the penalties and get the incentives while minimizing the time, effort and impact on your workflow.

Even if you ultimately choose not to participate, you should make that choice with all the facts. To get more informed about MU and PQRS now by watching CMS Incentive Programs Simplified for Physicians. This recorded event is available anytime and is designated for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM .

About the Speaker

Watch CME webinar nowJoy Rios, MBA, is a subject matter expert in both Meaningful Use and EHRs. She has a unique talent for distilling forbidding materials down to the information providers need to succeed. Joy develops EHR training programs, authors Meaningful Use and PQRS coursework, and writes a nationally syndicated Health IT column, Ask Joy, for 4Medapproved. Joy holds an MBA with a focus in sustainability, and is a Certified Healthcare Technology Specialist, with a focus in Workflow Redesign. Her most recent venture, Practice Transformation, focuses on providing resources, products, and services to support providers in keeping up with the pace of change in healthcare.

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3 SEO Tips to Get Found by New Patients Online

Lea Chatham August 7th, 2014

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Download 5 Steps to a Website GuideHaving a website for your medical practice matters. You simply can’t compete today without one. In fact, a Pew Research study showed that 87% of US adults use the Internet and 72% look for health information online. There are many things you need to do to get the most from your website. Maximizing your search engine optimization (SEO) is just one of those things.

According to Google, SEO affects only organic search results, not paid or sponsored results. For most small practices, this is important because you may not have the budget for paid advertising online. Your website vendor can help with most of the SEO strategies recommended by Google to help optimize SEO. Here are some basic guidelines to use:

  • Create unique, accurate page titles.
  • Use the description meta tag (a short summary of the page contents).
  • Have simple-to-understand URLs that use words (not complex numeric structures).
  • Make your site easy to navigate.
  • Offer quality content and services—the more relevant and interesting, the better your search results.
  • Optimize the use of images (help people imagine what being a patient feels like in your office).

For practices seeking to use their website to get new patients, you need to consider designing your website to increase local SEO.Tweet this Kareo story
You want to reach and engage your community to grow your practice—not reach people 3,000 miles away! Local optimization can help you get found in local searches (i.e., Pediatrician, Iowa City). Make sure that you and your vendor cover these additional SEO tasks when setting up your site:

  1. Include your city name along with top keywords in website content (i.e., We are pediatricians in Iowa City).
  2. Include your full address on every page of your website (not just the contact us page) and make sure it is exactly the same everywhere (same words, punctuation, etc.). It needs to be consistent.
  3. Link your Google Maps listing to your website.

To learn more ways to engage and retain patients with your website, download 5 Simple Steps to Creating a Website Your Patient Will Love.

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6 Steps to Hiring the Right Medical Practice Staff

Lea Chatham August 5th, 2014

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Tweet This Kareo StorySo, you’ve read the recent blog post on having the right medical practice staff mix at your practice. Now, you’re looking at your staffing, processes, and technology.

You may have discovered you are actually understaffed or incorrectly staffed. Perhaps someone has recently left the practice. Whatever the reason, you have determined you need to fill a position. Now what?

  1. Create a job description: Each position should have a clear job description that includes title, department, date the job description was developed and a revision date, who the employee reports to, and if the position is exempt or none exempt. The body of the job description should describe the general purpose of the position and responsibilities. This is where the job tasks are listed (i.e., knowledge, skills, and abilities). Describe the skills that are required to perform the job function and the experience needed. Include educational experience, physical requirements, and typical working conditions. Once the job description is complete you have the tools to identify the right candidate for the position. You can find sample descriptions online through a simple search or check with associations you belong to.
  2. Test the candidates: Test candidate knowledge and skills first so you don’t waste your time—or theirs. For example, if the position is for billing, have them complete a billing test before you interview. The test complexity should be based on the position. If the candidate does not pass the test, don’t interview. Tests should be conducted in the office so that you can be sure that the actual candidate is the one that took the test and not one of their friends.
  3. Identify the top applicants: Once you’ve tested skills, then you can interview the most qualified applicants. Depending on the size of your practice you may do more than one interview. In a smaller practice, the practice manager might be the only one who needs to speak with the candidates. In a larger practice, there could be an initial interview with the practice manager for the top candidates, followed by an interview of the top two with the department as a group or with the practice owner/provider.
  4. Conduct a working interview: Once you are down to the top two, schedule a working interview where the candidates get to work side-by-side with coworkers. Tweet this Kareo story
    This gives the practice a “test drive” to observe actual skills and how they interact with the patients and staff. A working interview should last no less than four hours and up to a week. Remember to have the candidates sign a confidentiality agreement before they are exposed to patient and business information. They should also have a clear understanding of HIPPA regulations.
  5. Conduct a background check: Once you have decided that the candidate is a good fit, make sure you complete a thorough professional reference and background check. Too often we are called in to practices for theft only to find out that the “perfect” candidate has a criminal background. It is important to remember that if the candidate has a criminal background that is not relevant to the position they are being hired for you cannot refuse them the position.
  6. Make an offer: When you have selected the ideal candidate, prepare a written offer letter. It should include the position they are being offered, rate of pay, who they report to on their first day, date and time they start, and if you are in a right to work state, a paragraph should be included to clarify what that means. Including a copy of the full job description is a good idea too. The offer letter and job description should be signed before the employee’s first day.

There is one last important thing to keep in mind. Often, employees leave without notice. When you hire in a right to work state no notice of termination is required by either party. You could find yourself short staffed with a full schedule of patients. Obviously, this puts pressure on you to fill the position quickly. Do not fill the position out of desperation. It is better to hire a temp to help out while you look for the right person. It may also be less expensive in the short term to pay a little overtime or reallocate staff to provide the appropriate coverage. It can cost up to $9,400.00 according to eHow to replace a wrong hire so don’t rush it.

About the Author

Rochelle_MG_1811Rochelle Glassman is President & CEO of United Physician Services. Rochelle brings a passionate, very practical “do it today” approach to making medical practices successful and getting physicians paid more.

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You Can Manage Increased Patient Portal Communication

Lea Chatham July 31st, 2014

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By Zac Watson

Kareo EHR Patient PortalAs more practices are adopting or integrating electronic health records (EHR) systems to meet meaningful use stage two requirements, many physicians are weary of the criteria surrounding patient portals. The most notable requirement may be that patient portals must be provided to more than 50 percent of all unique patients, and that more than 5 percent of them must access and use this resource.

 

One major concern many physicians have is becoming overwhelmed with patient communication regarding diagnosis or lab results. By placing this information in patient portals, many professionals fear that patients will misinterpret or become confused by the information and will reach out to doctors over the phone or by email with unnecessary questions. This can take away from practice efficiency and quickly use up the physician’s time, resulting in a system that is more harmful than helpful.

A study by Kaiser Permanente on its model of online healthcare concluded that the primary reason patients visited its portal was to view test results, followed by online appointments and prescription refills. Additionally, the study concluded that 63 percent of patient emails required clinical assessments or physician decisions, and 24 percent required clinical actions, like lab tests. The main reasons patients emailed their physicians were for discussing a change in health conditions, laboratory results, new conditions, prescription dose, or needing a new prescription.

Patients will use the resources at their disposal to get ahold of doctors for insight and information, and if handled incorrectly this can be both time consuming for doctors and frustrating for patients. However, evolving your patient portal solution into an effective tool for communication and education can increase value for patients while actually improving efficiency.Tweet this Kareo story

One of the most effective ways to manage patient communications is to group inquiries and delegate who is responsible for different types of interactions. For example, your practice can select one individual who is responsible for looking at all new emails to decide whether they are related to billing, diagnosis, test results, or appointment scheduling. Then, this person either handles the inquiries himself or forwards it on to the appropriate staff member. This encourages individuals in your office to take greater responsibility for patient engagement, and increases the timeliness of responses because the work is more evenly dispersed.

One of the main advantages of patients portals is the patients ability to feel more connected with their healthcare decisions. To fully take advantage of this additional connection, all emails should be responded to in a timely manner, preferably within 24 hours of receipt. Even if the response is simply saying the doctor will take a look at the message when he gets a chance, it’s important to recognize that you received the information and that you take all patient communication seriously.

Additionally, some information simply shouldn’t be addressed over a patient portal. Some sensitive questions and information regarding more serious conditions should be reserved for in-person meetings. It’s important for your practice to establish standards for acceptable forms of communication depending on the nature of the question prior to implementing a patient portal. For example, have written guidelines dictating when an email response is appropriate, when a phone call is more fitting, and when an in-person appointment is required. This will ensure that all physicians are maintaining professionalism with patient communications.

Many of the primary reasons that patients contact physicians already happen regardless of the patient portal’s influence. Even if your practice doesn’t have online resources, patients will still call to discuss changes in the condition of their health, new conditions, or prescription changes. By properly utilizing your patient portals, you can prevent redundant communication caused by confusion while empowering your patients with greater access to their health information.

For helpful strategies to implement and useful website and patient portal, download 5 Simple Steps to Create a Website Your Patients Will Love.

About the Author

Zac WatsonZach Watson is a content writer at TechnologyAdvice. He covers business intelligence, healthcare IT, and gamification. Connect with him on Google+.

 

 

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Your Top 5 Credit Card on File Questions Answered

Lea Chatham July 29th, 2014

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Patient Collections 101In her recent webinar, Patient Collections 101: Let’s Start at the Very Beginning, speaker Mary Pat Whaley shared her best practices for improving patient collections. She provided a lot of information about the benefits of using a credit card on file program. The, she spent time answering the many questions posed by participants. Here are a few of the top questions asked during the event.

 

Q: What are the security requirements for using credit card on file?
A: Your payment gateway must be PCI-DSS certified. The practice should not photocopy any credit cards or write the complete card information on paper. Take credit card information by phone. If you MUST write the information down, shred the information once it has been entered into the payment gateway. Make sure each user of the payment gateway users has an individual logon and password and require users to change passwords every 90 days. Have a strong security policy for credit card information protection and train all practice staff on the importance of protecting sensitive information.

Q: We’ve tried credit card on file once before. Patients were resistant and angry, my docs and staff were upset. What can we do to implement this program again but with better success?
A: Credit card on file, and good patient collections in general, require a planned rollout with training of all staff. Review the slides or watch the presentation again for the steps to improve patient collections. Before rolling out a program, you need to have your policies completed, have a communication plan for the program, and have your staff well trained and prepared to answer questions. For a deeper dive into the mechanics of CCOF, you can attend a live 90-minute webinar (http://managemypractice.com/services/credit-card-on-file-ccof/) or purchase a DVD (http://bit.ly/CCOFDVD) of the webinar. Both the live and recorded webinars include 12 templates, documents and policies for the implementation of CCOF.

Q: How often do we charge the card on file?
A: For a one-time charge, like a copay or a deductible amount that is within the set limit, you would charge the card at the time that you know the charge. For an ongoing payment plan, you would charge it on a monthly basis. For many practices, it is a combination of a charge at the time of service and any balance remaining after insurance pays about 30 days after the visit.

Q: How do we get patients to sign up for credit card on file?
A: This is where having a good, clear financial policy and a well-trained staff can come in handy. Present the policy to new patients and to all patients once a year. Explain the policy and answer questions patients have. Make sure every staff person can answer questions and explain why you are implementing this policy. Also, make sure patients understand how using credit card on file can benefit them. It allows them to pay their bills with no need to go online, write a check, wait for a statement, etc., and they do not need to worry about bringing a check or credit card to their visit. It is more secure and the staff only see the credit card once when they swipe it to place the card on file, instead of at every visit. Many credit card companies, utilities, and other retailers use this practice. Patients should be familiar with how something like this works, and they should see that you are simply following best practices that are being used in many other industries. If you can’t collect the money you are owed, you won’t be able to stay open. So do whatever it takes to help patients understand this change. It is scary for practices to consider that they might lose patients, but we’ve not had any practices lose any more than three patients, and those patients were problem payers to begin with.

I tell practices “Not every patient will be right for your practice.” With the scarcity of all types of physicians looming, most patients will comply to stay with a physician and practice they like. Tweet this Kareo story

Q: Do patients often dispute charges with their credit card company?
A: This is not very common. If you make sure the patient has reviewed the financial policy and signed a credit card on file agreement and asked any questions, then the patient should not be surprised by charges. Also, be sure the patient knows that they can call and get a copy of charges and payments. Or point them to your patient portal if it offers the ability for patients to see their billing history. We love the email receipt capability of payment gateways. Often the patient gets the receipt while they are in the office so it is not a case of just getting their credit card statement 30 days later and not remembering. Plus, the payment gateway puts the practice name on the charge transaction, so patients are not confused about where the charge came from.

If you missed the webinar, you can watch the recording or download the slides. If you find this information helpful, check out the next webinar from Kareo, AAA for MU: Roadside Assistance for the EHR Incentive Program.

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