6 Ways to Improve Health Systems Accounts Receivable (A/R) Management

The disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing financial and administrative challenges left decision-makers at health systems and hospitals with no option but to look for alternate ways, including accounts receivables management to neutralize the negative impacts on their bottom line. Efficiently managing hospital accounts receivable (A/R) is one key way to improve the istitution’s fiscal wellness. Successful receivables management services can expedite collections and augment profitability.

Let’s look at 6 key areas of focus and their benefits in optimizing accounts receivable management for health systems and hospitals:

Data Verification

Ensuring precision and efficacy in the revenue chain requires updated and verified insurance information. This includes recent modifications to coverage, ideally obtained prior to the patient’s arrival. Correct patient visit code, data entry into the billing system, and insurance billing based on this data are fundamental to a successful A/R management model for health systems and hospitals.

Patient Obligation

A significant portion of revenue cycle management success, especially in the context of A/R management, hinges on the patient’s comprehension of their financial obligations towards the medical practice and their insurance company. It is crucial for providers to communicate payment expectations, have the patient sign an agreement encapsulating these expectations, and ensure that the administrative team is aware of and supports this agreement.

Monitor Payers and Troubleshoot

Monitoring payers and identifying potential issues are vital functions of Hospital A/R management. Hospitals must generate and audit monthly reports, segmented into 30-, 60-, 90-, and 120-day A/R cycles, detailing the amount owed, uncollected dues, and monitor if the latter is increasing. Tracking denied claims and identifying patterns will help locate the root of any problems.

A/R Management Staff Training

To prevent operational disruptions, it is imperative to train A/R management staff. A survey by the American College of Physicians revealed that the responsibility of identifying such disruptions, including technical issues like computer or clearinghouse hitches, falls on the A/R personnel at health systems and hospitals.

Improved Patient Interaction

Patient apprehension about dealing with A/R departments can be alleviated by adopting a consistently applied payment policy and offering flexible payment plans. A well-crafted patient portal can further enhance patient engagement for hospitals, particularly if it allows features like credit card information storage for convenient payments.

Patient-Friendly Statements

Lastly, ensuring that statements are easily comprehensible to patients is of utmost importance. Collaborating with process vendors to guarantee easily understandable statements can save both patients and billing staff significant time and avoid unnecessary confusion.

Managing accounts receivables efficiently can make for a steady source of revenue. The nature of services that HCPs provide, make them indispensable, but continuing to provide medical services without focusing on optimizing revenue can burden providers with a rapidly-growing list of receivables that may soon turn bad or have to be written-off, if not dealt with properly.

Sunknowledge Services Inc., a HIPAA-compliant RCM company, has been helping healthcare providers, including hospitals and health systems, reduce accounts receivable days and consistently lower dues on a month-on-month basis. To find out more about our (no strings attached) 30-day free transition or queries on our expertise or how we can optimize hospitals’ accounts receivable management efforts, please contact Sunknowledge Services Inc.