How Improving Your Payment Process Can Help Your Practice Grow
The outlook for physician practices across the country has been on an upward trajectory in the second quarter of 2022, compared to the first part of the year. However, while patient volume, physician productivity and revenues rise, the recent report by KaufmanHall found that net patient revenue per provider work relative value unit (wRVU) remains lower than last year. With expenses growing faster than reimbursements, many practices will have to evaluate strategies to stay on top of their revenue cycle.
There are several factors that practices can consider when looking to grow and manage their profit margin. These include staffing, services, patient growth and retention and technology or equipment. The patient payment process has always been part of running a business, but now can be seen as an asset to growing a practice.
Below are a few ways that prove implementing a modern payment process can support your practice’s growth.
Streamlined Process Speeds up Time to Collection
Modern payment solutions provide staff and patients a more streamlined process to communicate and collect outstanding balances. This convenience is very important to consumers. A US Bank survey revealed that 44% of consumers pay medical bills faster when they receive digital or phone notifications about billing, and 49% would pay by text if available. Automated payment solutions enable practices to simplify the collections workflow by sending pre-programmed text, email and mailed statements to patients. Furthermore, these payment notices can simplify the process for patients by allowing them to pay bills online, in the office via a payment terminal or by mail. Some solutions even allow payments via popular modes such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Microsoft Pay. Making the process more convenient for everyone can save staff time and help practices get paid faster. When medical bills are paid quicker, the increase in efficiency makes room in the practice for new business.
Improved Patient Experience
Healthcare practices can also plan for growth by increasing trust between the patient and its practice. This not only supports client retention but can bring in new patients. In fact, 70% of patients said a positive online reputation is extremely important when selecting a healthcare provider. In the digital age, practices need to evolve with modern technology to best meet the needs of their patients. Forty-four percent of millennials alone would choose a medical provider because they offered digital solutions via mobile. This extends to the payment process, with 85% of patients saying they prefer an electronic payment method for their medical bills.
Automated payment solutions can make the payment process easier for patients as well. Some allow patients to store cards on file, better preparing them for future visits. In addition, some provide easy-to-read statements that clearly explain what they owe and provide a variety of ways patients can make payments. The patient experience is an important one, both to retain and grow revenue for a practice. But once you have all these patients, bringing the revenue cycle to completion is the hard part. This is where digital technology can really shine.
The revenue cycle can be arduous, complicated and lengthy. But having constant visibility into outstanding balances can help you monitor the health of your practice and better forecast for growth. Modern payment technology updates automatically when payment is received to ensure that you are always viewing an up-to-date report. Your billing department can also benefit from this system as it allows them to track the status and delivery rate of statements and set reminders to follow up if payments are not received.
With the right automated patient payment solution, your practice has the potential to consolidate the process, improve the customer experience and ultimately support business growth.
To learn more about our patient payment solution visit us here.