While the right medical billing software makes a huge difference in your patient collections, your next best tool is staff training.
Have you ever heard your staff shy away from asking for a co-pay or say something to the effect that “collections are not my job”?
If so, then staff training could significantly improve your patient collections.
Why? Because in order to get paid, you need to ask—and ask at the right time, in the right way. That takes training.
The MGMA’s Performance and Practices of Successful Medical Groups: 2011 Report Based on 2010 Data revealed that 50% of better-performing medical practices reported collecting 90% to 100% of copayments at the time of service.
After treatment, your chances of collecting patient debt drop to less than 40%.
That’s why your staff should be trained to ask patients for payment before the appointment.
The first step is helping staff to understand two things:
- Your practice has a right to be paid for the quality care you provide
- It’s OK to ask for payment—you wouldn’t go to the grocery store and expect to walk out without paying, would you?
Ask your staff to remember that if your practice isn’t being paid, someone else is probably receiving “your” money; even with limited funds, patients decide who to pay, and your practice should be high on the list.
Important steps to follow for improving your patient collections:
Train: As mentioned above, training is key to helping your staff become comfortable with collections. It’s just like any other task that’s performed in the office: it requires training and practice.
Scripts: Provide your staff with scripts to use until they are completely comfortable. Once they’re provided with polite but firm language for requesting payment, they’ll find it much easier.
Role play: Have your staff practice with each other and discuss ways to deal with a variety of situations. This will also reduce their anxiety.
Finally, review the infographic below with your staff so they understand the different types of payers and what they each need to insure payment. Then, have your staff register for our upcoming webinar, Take the Pulse of Your Practice Cash Flow — And Improve Your Results. They’ll learn what techniques other successful practices use to improve patient collections.