Hospital administrators have limited bandwidth and priorities can get reshuffled daily. Workforce and budgets are finite, and the responsibility to make sure a patient is not harmed is most sacred. Consequently, outsourcing ancillary support functions are often the best path forward for a health system. Not all outsourcing is created equal, however. For health systems seeking a more modern patient payment solution, a key consideration is the payment facilitator function.

What’s a Payment Facilitator?

Payment facilitators, (also known as PayFacs), accept electronic payments using their established payment infrastructure on behalf of another company, called the sub-merchant. Today, Patientco is recognized as a payment facilitator and our health system clients are sub-merchants to Patientco.

Without a payment facilitator, a health system that wants to accept payments must set up their own merchant account with a bank to gain access to the payment system. 

Applying for a merchant account is typically resource-intensive and time-consuming. The application and onboarding process is lengthy and resource-intensive. It can take weeks before an organization can begin accepting and processing payments.

As a payment facilitator, Patientco simplifies the application and onboarding process, and provides payment processing services and funding directly to the health systems we serve. During implementation, the underwriting and merchant onboarding phase with non-PayFacs can take weeks and requires mountains of paperwork. With a PayFac like Patientco, this phase is reduced to 2-3 days, which makes implementation much shorter. As a result, our health system clients can accept payments much faster, instead of waiting weeks to start processing payments. This is especially beneficial for health systems that are growing and adding more facilities to their brand. 

What Makes Patientco’s PayFac Status Unique?

There are many payment facilitators in the market today and experts predict there will be more than 4,000 recognized payment facilitators by 2025. But, not all payment facilitators are the same. 

For example, Patientco’s status as a PayFac, combined with our out-of-the-box HIS integrations, means the onboarding, underwriting and configuration process for new health system clients is simple and fast. We also support more efficient, user-friendly payment processing by integrating credit card payments with other payment methods, including automated pay-by-phone and lockbox payments, which is not typical of other PayFacs. As a result, Patientco can automate reporting, reconciliation and posting for all patient payment types with guaranteed accuracy. 

In addition, many payment facilitators use third-party risk monitoring services. As a result, risk monitoring does not happen in real time and issues can take longer to resolve. The question for a health system executive: do you want another vendor – that may have no or limited experience in healthcare – between your organization’s payment platform and your patients?

Real-time Risk Monitoring

Patientco monitors transactions in real-time with our in-house risk monitoring tool. This means our financial operations team can review transactions, escalate and resolve issues for our clients in a fraction of the time it would take them to do it on their own.

“As a payment facilitator, we perform risk monitoring of all credit card processing activity for our sub-merchants,” said Marilyn Vallecillo, Patientco’s Director of Operations. “There are numerous third-party services that could have helped Patientco accomplish this. In order to limit disruptions and conduct real-time monitoring, Patientco built its own risk monitoring tool.”

When reviewing payment activity, we look at transactions through the lens of our health system clients. We do so by creating unique risk merchant profiles for each health system client. This reduces the chance that a legitimate transaction will be flagged as suspicious.

Taking Care of Payments, So You Can Keep Taking Care of Patients

Health system administrators already have their hands’ full meeting physician needs and taking care of patients every day. Let a payment facilitator, like Patientco, manage patient payments, so you can continue to focus on patient care.

Want to learn more about working with a payment facilitator? Schedule a brief consultation with one of our payment experts today!