Patient payment responsibility on the rise. How can your practice ensure you're collecting as much patient payment revenue as possible?
Learn best-practices and tips to help collect more patient payments.
Improve Communications With Patients
You Can Collect Upfront Revenue
Educate Your Staff About How to Discuss Payments With Patients
Take Advantage of Patient-Preferred Payment Technologies
Accept Multiple Forms of Payment
5 Keys to Adapting to Patient Payment Trends
“Patient pay responsibility will climb to 50 percent of the healthcare dollar by the end of this decade.”
- Mark Bertolini, Aetna CEO
Practices that adapt to the changing payment proportions between patients and insurance companies, and correctly apply focus on the Patient Payment Experience will achieve higher revenues and write off less bad debts. Here are a few tips and practices to help you be among these practices:
1.Improve Communications With Patients
It's no secret that happy patients are more engaged and are more likely to respond with faster payments. Communication inside and outside of the office are critical to their satisfaction. Fortunately these communications can be managed through proper staff training and the use of automated technology. Surveys show that patients want and expect email & texting availability, as well as the option to engage with the office and providers through a patient portal, website, and other online channels.
In spite of this patient demand, fewer than half of providers use email or text to communicate with patients. Consider incorporating automated technologies such as texting and email to enhance patient communications.
2. Collect More Revenue Upfront
While every practice is attempting to capture the co-pay upon check-in, there are other payment collection opportunities at that point as well.
Consider training staff with phrases to engage patients in taking care of outstanding balances. Payment questions that avoid Yes/No answers are more effective in arranging payments from patients. Rather than asking, "Can you pay this balance?", consider asking, "Would you prefer to pay the amount with cash, or by card or check? Or do you need to set up a payment plan to pay the remaining balance?" BillFlash lets practices securely store card information through "tokens" which allows practices to charge patients at various contact points.
3. Educate Your Staff About How to Discuss Payments With Patients
As mentioned above, staff training is important in collecting upfront payments. Other contact points with patients can require sensitive, yet effective dialogue to collect payments while also providing a positive experience with your practice. Some practices offer their staff incentives for onsite and phone payments to help motivate them to have these conversations, even though they may be uncomfortable for some. With proper training, your staff can become more effective at having payment conversations and ensure that the patient still has a positive payment experience.
4. Take Advantage of Patient-Preferred Payment Technologies
It's important to understand that patients are consumers. They have expectations that their payment experience with your practice will be similar to their shopping experiences. You can provide their expected experience by incorporating their preferred billing and payment methods through simple technology. It begins with electronic billing that may accompany printed statements. These electronic statements, delivered through email and text, naturally point them to online payment options. Stored payment options and payment plans can further simplify the process. All of these options significantly reduce your staff's involvement in the billing and payment process, allowing them to focus more on patient care. EZClaim integrates with BillFlash to make it easy to offer these payment options.
5. Accept Multiple Forms of Payment
Limitations in accepted payment methods and payment options can be a liability for your practice in getting paid quickly, and sometimes, getting paid at all. You can remove these barriers by incorporating payment systems that make it easy to accept all card types as well as payment plans. The BillFlash Billing and Payment system lets you offer these payment options to your patients simply. Patient billing and payments can then be streamlined with EZClaim because of the existing integration with BillFlash.
“Providers that use BillFlash ePay services have noticed a 60% increase in patient payments within the first 30 days.”
- D. Jackson, Prestige Billing