On Friday, Congress approved legislation (S 2425) that aims to make it easier for providers to obtain hardship exemptions to Stage 2 of the meaningful use program, Health Data Management reports. The bill now heads to President Obama.
Topics: Incentive Programs
Medical staff are sometimes resistant to begin using EHRs, especially when changing from a paper system for the first time, due to a belief that the switch will waste time and interrupt their workflow. And when medical staff aren’t properly trained in the use of EHR software, this can actually be the case.
Whether you are adding a new doctor or opening your own practice, you need to start the credentialing process in advance to avoid potential problems. If you ignore the significance of the credentialing process you will experience delayed cash flow, difficult scheduling because of patient restrictions, and repeated phone calls to and from payers.
Healthcare experts might have been pushing telemedicine for decades but only recently have we seen the rapid adoption of electronic health records push physicians to get on board with telemedicine. Telemedicine is transforming healthcare and is now becoming integrated into the ongoing operations of hospitals, specialty departments, private practices and consumer's home and workplaces.
Medical billing can be the "elephant in the room" when it comes to dealing with patients. Tricky as it can be, however, it's important to maintain lines of communication with patients, particularly since more patients are paying a larger portion of their medical bills despite more people having insurance.
Has your practice seen an increase in patient phone calls surrounding billing complaints? Mistakes on medical bills are not uncommon. In fact, over 80% of medical bills contain errors, whether from erroneous charges, double billings or, in some cases, abusive charging practices. Your practice can avoid these mistakes by following a few simple guidelines.
Topics: Practice Management
CMS recently issued an update on the steps it has taken to address isolated problems with processing ICD-10 codes, AHA News reports (AHA News, 11/20). The U.S. health care system transitioned from using ICD-9 codes to the ICD-10 code set on Oct. 1. The switch required health care providers and insurers to change out about 14,000 codes for about 68,000 codes (iHealthBeat, 10/30).
Decreasing reimbursement and rising costs aren’t the only factors causing financial problems for medical practices. In most practices, inefficiency can cause significant amount of revenue loss. You might even be surprised at the subtle ways revenue could be leaking from your practice.
Every industry on Earth has changed drastically in the 21st Century. Healthcare professionals, however, have been hit harder than most, with changing insurance policies, an uncertain economy, and the demands of the Information Age to contend with. People working in the medical industry are constantly coming and going, and savvy practices must learn how to recruit effectively to not only have the best and brightest in their field, but any doctors at all.
Are you (or your practice manager) regularly measuring key performance indicators (KPIs) that indicate the health of your revenue cycle management? If not, you should be. When you select and measure KPIs and monitor those measurements for trends, you can more easily see where improvements are necessary and will be of most benefit.
Topics: Revenue Cycle Management