Patients are Redefining the Payment Experience and How You Can Keep Up

Posted by Dawn Lunde on Thu, Jun 08, 2017 @ 08:30 AM

Facilities need to give patients payment options that appeal to their wants and needs.
Facilities need to give patients payment options that appeal to their wants and needs.

It may sound hyperbolic to speak about a payment revolution, but changes in the way consumers pay for goods and services in the past decade or so have been open and noticeable. From the ability to make purchases and pay bills online to using mobile devices in the place of credit and debit cards, the way people pay is changing.

Let's take a look at how the patient experience continues to change  and what your facility can do to take advantage of these developments:

Better Patient Experiences

"Money and how to pay bills are vitally important considerations for many patients."

While there are obvious differences between the retail sales world and healthcare, every type of business benefits from a stable and loyal base of customers - or patients. The traditional concept of it costing more to gain new customers as opposed to repeat customers still holds value. The degree of it varies by industry, but you must remember it's beneficial to capture the revenue patients already owe you.

A group of patients who appreciate the level of service they receive - both in terms of care and follow up or administrative tasks- are beneficial to an organization. Research by consulting group Accenture found hospitals that provide highly positive patient experiences can  increase margins  as much as 50 percent. 

Healthcare payments are one aspect of a more holistic improvement in the patient experience, but they are the most vital in some important ways. Consider:

  • Paying is often the last step for a patient before leaving the facility, and therefore leaves a lasting impression.
  • Payments are among the most similar and relatable consumer actions in healthcare as compared to other types of businesses.
  • Timing and income are often directly correlated to a patient's ability to pay.

Patients have become accustomed to payment methods from the biggest and most common industries like retail. What can your facility do to keep up with the preferences?

Making the Payment Experience More Positive and Effective 

Providing effective payment options is among the most crucial actions providers can take to create a modern payment environment and improve satisfaction. Incorporating healthcare payment solutions like online bill pay tools is one valuable strategy. Just as patients pay online for a variety of goods and services outside the medical world, they should have similar options and simplicity when settling their bill with your facility.

Another option to strongly consider is recurring payment plans. Managing payment responsibility creates positive outcomes for you and your patients. For patients who can't pay their medical bills all at once, payment plans strike a balance between providing financial flexibility and ensuring your facility receives all the money owed to it. By keeping a patient's payment information on-file and pre-authorizing the charges on a weekly, monthly or other regular basis, you can keep patients happy and remove the need for staff to take on all the work that normally comes with collection.

Tags: Patient Payments

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  • "We have so much more information available to us with SBP than with our previous service. It's offering our patients more flexibility, and happier patients are much more pleasant for our Billing Office to deal with."

    - Kurt A.
    Revenue Cycle Manager
    National Imaging Center
  • "The staff at Secure Bill Pay have been an excellent revenue cycle partner in assisting us with setting up our processes, helping us review and analyze our results and identify opportunities at our various locations. They partner with us to identify new solutions and services as we have grown. The reliability for payment processing has been very good and our requests for Customer Support are handled very timely and thoroughly."
    - Kathleen J.
    Central Business Office Manager
    Multi-Hospital & Clinic Health System
  • "Our volume of patient credit/debit card payments increased by 44% in the first month of the service compared to that same month a year prior (with the same patient volume). We attribute that to now having online bill pay and better ability to collect at the POS for all of our locations [where we had not been before], even the outreach sites!"
    - Terry M.
    Practice Administrator
    Orthopedic Spine Surgery Group
  • “I’ve been shocked with the success of the online bill paying program... Patients come to us in acute health care situations. Bill paying is not their highest priority. We didn’t expect so many patients to use Secure Bill Pay so quickly, but the statistics speak for themselves.”
    - Beth M.
    VP Revenue Cycle
    Large University Health System
  • "Before Secure Bill Pay, online bill pay only accounted for one percent of our payments. After just six months of using Secure Bill Pay’s no-login solution, that number reached 10 percent."
    - Jen R.
    Finance Manager
    Large Ophthalmology Practice
  • “The nice part about Secure Bill Pay is the breadth of tools available to manage the entire patient pay process. But the best part is the outcomes we’ve seen, including year-over-year double-digit increases in patient pay revenue that are not wholly due to industry or volume changes.”

    "The integration with our PM/EMR software is simply icing on the cake."

    - Steve M.
    Director of Business Services
    Large Integrated Health System
  • "Senior Management is thrilled with the numbers coming through due to our implementation of Secure Bill Pay."
    - Kim W.
    Business Office Supervisor
    Inpatient & Outpatient Psychiatric Facility
  • "The system was received with open arms at each clinic. All had a few questions at first, but as you said, it was simple to get comfortable."
    - Sue C.
    Practice Manager
    Large Nephrology Practice
  • "Secure Bill Pay has streamlined our credit card process. It has been beneficial from a processing end to a storage and search of record end. Certainly saves us time!"
    - Jackie F.
    Business Office Manager
    Dematology Practice
  • "It is easy to talk about a product and service we are totally happy with!"
    - Cheryl M.
    Practice Manager
    Mid-size Ophthalmology Practice
  • "We're impressed. Thank you for not being afraid of any question we may ask and answering it in a straightforward manner. This gives us more confidence."
    - Grant E.
    Revenue Cycle Manager
    Large Dermatology Clinic
  • "Secure Bill Pay  is a much more efficient option for collecting patient payments... It is a forward thinking approach for healthcare revenue. Dynamics have switched where we all need to think and act like a business versus a service."

    - Julie H.
    Director of Business Services
    Large Physician Group


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