A couple of generations ago, the local doctor was paid via barter. This could have been anything from labor, like painting a fence, to livestock, like chickens. As recently as 2010, a Nevada politician suggested we return to the barter system in healthcare.
Times have changed and generations of younger employees are a big part of that. According to performance consulting firm Marble Arch, “Employees are actively leaving current employers in search of organizations that will fill their need for challenging, meaningful work that connects them with others. The new American dream is one of a meaningful life filled with purpose, leading to wealth creation.”
If you’re like millions of Americans, the answer to that question is, “I can’t remember!” Yet, many healthcare providers still require patients to use antiquated, inconvenient or cumbersome methods in order to contact, schedule or pay for services.
Tags: Patient Payments, healthcare revenue cycle management, health care payments, healthcare revenue management, patient pay, hospital payments, bill pay service, financial management in health care, healthcare payment
The modern Medicare beneficiary has grown up with first dollar medical coverage and expected to slide right into similar coverage when they reached age 65. But they will soon learn that Medicare isn’t quite the Cadillac coverage they expected, nor does it have a smooth ride. Like all Americans, seniors will be responsible for paying more out-of-pocket for their healthcare. This can make it very challenging for healthcare providers to collect patient payments from seniors.
Today’s healthcare patient is much more consumer-driven than ever before. Health costs continue to go up, and although there's not much a healthcare provider can do to stop that from happening, there are ways to lessen the pain for patients. Quality care is in high demand, but most patients need care to be affordable since the patient payment portion of their service is increasing.
In our society, many people take their health for granted. But when they have an illness or injury, they place great value on being heard, treated and getting better. Ultimately, healhcare at its core is to provide quality care that leads to better health, but without patient payment, your ability to deliver that care may suffer. So the business side of the patient visit can be equally important to ensure a good outcome. Do your providers and employees truly realize this? Does the staff understand how your growing accounts receivable hinders your ability to continue your mission and retain your employees?
Healthcare is often an easy target for criticism. The public perceives doctors and healthcare administrators are wealthy individuals due to over-charging for services. They see sprawling, beautiful health campuses. All while patients are paying more out-of-pocket now than ever before. The cover story of the latest TIME Magazine only adds fuel to the fire. The “Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us” (TIME Magazine, February 21, 2013).
Have you ever been told by a vendor that if you use their product or service you “don’t need to worry about that compliance stuff”? Not true! Compliance is always your responsibility and non-compliance opens your healthcare organization up to risk and potentially financial penalties. In health care, how you take and process patient payments is a critical area to insure your compliance.