Compelling reasons to outsource your billing

It is in a billing company’s best interest to always stay on top of revenue leaks and maximize profits. A billing company is another set of eyes that recognizes operational failures that can cost a practice big money. The main objective of a billing service is to improve efficiency, reduce costs and increase reimbursements while leveraging state-of-the-art information systems. Management teams have a diverse background in practice management experience, coding expertise, operations management, information systems, insurance claim processing as well as state compliance and federal HIPAA guidelines.

Before hiring a billing service, it is essential to ask the right questions to determine if the service will be right for you. Look for a service that is trustworthy, compliant, knowledgeable, and reputable.  Consistently reviewing financial performance benchmarks is an objective of a billing service. There are many areas a practice may not have time to review regularly. For instance, not reviewing adjustment codes on a regular basis can mean lost revenue. Staying up-to-date with the tricks of the trade is a billing services responsibility.

Ask yourself, is your practice recovering every dollar possible? With the rules and regulations constantly changing, how can a busy practice stay educated? Billing companies are not just a billing service. A good billing company partners with their centers and practices to manage specific issues that cause a loss in profits. Outsourcing can save money and offer access to a higher level of professional expertise and service that doctors couldn’t afford to hire or find on their own. Too often, administrative and human resource issues are the main reasons doctors outsource their billing functions.

If a practice is considering performing its own billing and collections, then significant preparation must be done to achieve success. This includes developing and implementing policies and procedures for claims submission and account follow up, dedicated staff to perform these functions, and implementation of software that can perform claims and billing functions, including electronic billing and remittance capabilities.

Without a billing service, much of a medical establishments business is open to risk. In the event of an internal system crash, or weather disaster, the employees are then unable to work. Many businesses' can fail or suffer sufficient income loss. When the decision is made to retain the services of a billing company, standards are implemented and increased, as well as monthly performance goals. Lastly, proper backup of information systems is adhered to.  

Check to see if your billing company has clearly stated goals and objectives, which are congruent with your goals. Staff members from both organizations should have an understanding of the standards and objectives, and accept responsibility to meet certain production measurements. Daily production targets should be designed to hold the billing company’s staff accountable. As a result of this process, receipts will increase while the overhead of managing the function will decrease. Make sure their organizational structure is based on a team-based structure with client and specialty assignments. In his book, Business @ the Speed of Thought, Bill Gates notes that “an important reengineering principle is that companies should focus on their core competencies and outsource everything else.” Most physicians outsource important functions like taxes and legal matters. The next logical step is to have your billing handled by experienced professionals. Enjoy the extra time with your patients and leave the paperwork to a billing service.