A hospital’s accounts receivable department can be one of the busiest—and burdened—areas in your hospital. Many hospitals have made the choice to remove some of that burden and bring in a partner to help them manage the self-pay portion, allowing their A/R employees to focus on dealing with insurance companies.
But there are important things to remember if you’re dealing with a partner in self-pay. Here are a few tips to help you manage your self-pay vendor.
Keep It Seamless
First and foremost, your partner should have technology in place that allows for a perfectly seamless interaction for your patients. In the best cases, the patient has no idea that they aren’t speaking with an immediate employee of the hospital. This often means that the call center employee knows how to interact with a patient. For example, if your hospital is based in North Carolina but vendor is based in North Dakota, it’s not appropriate to talk about the weather—it will be vastly different.
If patients know a party that isn’t your hospital is contacting them, they may have some reservations about passing over secure information. In addition, third parties calling to help close an account can sound much like a debt collector. Make sure your self-pay partner can act just like they’re in your accounts receivable department, build rapport with patients, and efficiently close the revenue cycle.
Keep Patient Satisfaction Top of Mind
In today’s healthcare world, patient satisfaction is king. Patients who aren’t satisfied with an experience at a hospital—from walking in through the doors to paying off their bill—will often choose another hospital for their next procedure. Because patients are shopping around, it’s important that your self-pay partner keeps patient satisfaction in mind at all times.
This is particularly important as they’re trying to help you close accounts. They are responsible for helping the patient find the most effective way to pay off their amount owed while keeping them happy, as well as ensuring your hospital closes the revenue cycle without the account becoming bad debt. That opens up an entirely new spectrum of difficulties that are best avoided.
Can Operate Independently
Of course, those things aside, you want a self-pay partner that can operate functionally without management. The reason you chose a partner in the first place was to take a load off of your accounts receivable department’s plates. If your partner is requiring extra attention from you or any of your employees, it might be time to invest in a new partnership that can give you exactly what you need.
For more information about how HCM can help close your revenue cycle, contact us today.