It’s officially 2020 and you know what that means? New year, new you! Just kidding, we bet you’re great just as you are! But still, the new year is a great time to think about how to make the future even better. At Patientco, we’ve brainstormed some revenue cycle management (RCM) resolutions that will help create a better healthcare financial experience. Below are a few of our resolutions – we’d encourage your team to adopt these RCM best practices this year, too!
RCM Best Practices for 2020
Stop the fragmented financial experiences (for patients & your team).
Make 2020 the year your team stops switching between screens and multiple tools. Consider this RCM best practice: adopt staff-facing payment tools that feature point-of-service and back-office workflow prompts. Also, does your team have a complete view of the patient’s activity across the entire system to offer the right support? Oftentimes, disparate RCM tools limit visibility of balances. This makes it difficult for a team member to answer even a simple question about a patient’s financial responsibility, let alone offer the right payment options. Instead, try this RCM best practice and give your team a single source of truth for patient balances.
Having multiple RCM tools and a limited view of patient balances inhibits your team’s productivity. These issues are likely impacting your health system’s bottom line. In fact, research shows that many providers struggle to collect patient payments. For example, providers collect only 12% of outstanding balances at the time of service and collect nothing 67% of the time, according to an article in Healthcare Dive.
Rather than look for a quick fix with bolt-on technologies or more point solutions, healthcare leaders should equip their RCM teams with tools to provide seamless patient financial care, from the first interaction to the last. Addressing this requires more than just a suite of patient-facing self-service tools. While technologies like online bill pay are great, there will be times when a patient needs help from a customer service team member. Empower that team member to help. They need a solution that will allow them to “step in” and assist the patient at that exact moment in time.
Realize your team’s full potential by offering training (when & where it’s needed).
Speaking of assisting patients, it’s important to identify training opportunities for team members in real time. Your health system can adhere to this RCM best practice with on-demand reports. By tracking achievements of individuals against your health system’s goals, you can identify where extra training is needed, when it’s needed. Most organizations are not doing this, as 72% have no ongoing specialized training regarding collections, according to HFMA.
This means there’s an opportunity for your health system to rise above the status quo and provide superior financial care for patients. No doubt, engaging patients about their financial responsibility is challenging. Patients may not understand their insurance coverage and why they owe what they owe. Ensure your team can navigate those conversations and deliver a compassionate financial experience. (For more RCM best practices on patient communication, check out this blog post!)
To conclude, let’s make a toast (a virtual one at least, so raise your glass, or coffee mug!). Cheers to a high-performing RCM team that makes it easier for patients to navigate their financial care journey in 2020.