Solutions for Rural Healthcare Systems to Improve RCM
Extended Business Office Services Can Increase Revenue and Decrease Inefficiencies for Rural Healthcare Providers
Hospitals and other medical organizations provide important services for any community, but their impact is often felt even more in rural communities.
For one, more of the residents may go to that particular medical provider because they’re one of the only in town. It’s also more likely residents know each other in smaller towns, so there’s a good chance that doctors, nurses, and hospital staff personally know a lot of their patients and interact with them around town. Plus, many residents of the town may work at that particular medical facility. In some towns they may even be the top employer, in terms of number of employees.
Rural Healthcare Challenges
Rural healthcare systems also face challenges that non-rural medical providers don’t have as much.
It can be harder to recruit physicians and other medical personnel. The ones who graduate from the top colleges and medical schools may go to different cities where they can get bigger salaries than a rural hospital is able to provide.
The office staff must also be chosen from a smaller pool of applicants if the population is low or there are no big cities nearby. The office may be then forced to hire employees who aren’t always up to date on changing insurance reimbursements, the intracieces of medical billing, and the various methods to get patient payments.
And the patients themselves are more likely to be uninsured, have chronic diseases, and face other financial hardships that make paying harder.
This can make it a challenge for rural hospitals to get paid the money they are owed, endangering their bottom line and putting them at risk of having to close. That’s why a revenue cycle management (RCM) vendor can be the way to increase revenue, lower medical billing costs for your facility, and help provide much-needed efficiencies.
What Does an RCM Vendor Do?
In the case of medical billing, a revenue cycle management vendor – also known as an extended business office (EBO) vendor – handles patient payments once patients go to self-pay. They provide a valuable step before patients get sent to collections, where it’s increasingly unlikely the medical provider will ever get paid the full amount or any amount at all.
Instead of having your in-house office staff making calls and drafting letters to send to patients who owe money, the RCM vendor handles that for you. They also educate your patients as to their payment options. Insurance and patient payments can get confusing. Patients get overwhelmed by not only the large amount they owe but also the various insurance codes and rules and confusing reimbursement policies. That’s where a skilled medical extended business office company can help your patients understand their payments and how best to complete them.
Assistentcy LLC, a company based in Lenexa, KS, provides hospital EBO services for countless medical practices. Assistentcy handles delinquent patient payments, so you don’t have to. Their “Midwestern nice” customer service and skill with educating patients, contacting them at different times of day through phone and letter, and working to obtain solutions can ease the financial and staffing burden on hospitals and doctor offices.
How a Revenue Cycle Management Vendor Can Help Rural Healthcare Systems
One of the great things about rural healthcare is, because the community is smaller, there’s a good chance patients and medical providers have been friendly for years. Maybe the doctor regularly visits the bakery owned by her patient or has a patient who is also her child’s third-grade teacher.
But this can certainly have its negative side too, as office staff may feel uncomfortable having to call and follow up with friends in their community about late patient payments or problems due to the medical provider not getting paid. That’s where an extended business office provider can handle these uncomfortable calls and work toward a positive solution that doesn’t put personal relationships at risk.
Rural healthcare systems may also have limited technology funds or have trouble recruiting office staff with expert knowledge on the confusing, ever-changing world of insurance payments and patient pay issues. A revenue cycle management provider, like Assistentcy LLC , is up to date on insurance nuances and ready to share that information with patients in a way that’s easy to understand. Assistentcy’s entire business is medical billing, so they can provide expert services, whereas in-house hospital staff may find this more challenging.
Additionally, medical extended business office companies can reduce the costs related to hiring in-house staff to handle medical billing. They can also free up your existing staff to focus on other tasks or projects that may also drive increased revenue. Instead of being on the phone all day, trying to explain confusing medical statements to patients, they can be greeting patients, scheduling, handling medical charts, helping medical personnel, and more.
Every Cent Counts
When a big-city hospital has some patients who are unable to make their payments in full, the hospital is likely to be okay. For rural healthcare providers, this may not be the case.
As rural medical practices have fewer patients, they feel a bigger impact anytime a patient can’t make their payments.
That’s why an RCM company can really help increase revenue, so hospitals can continue thriving and serving their community.
The greater your medical organization’s revenue, the more you’re then able to recruit top-notch doctors and other medical providers who command larger salaries. If the hospital is continuing to let revenue slip through the cracks, this can become impossible.
See What a Revenue Cycle Management Vendor Can Do for Your Rural Healthcare System
Help your medical organization continue to serve its patients by increasing your revenue and efficiencies. Stop revenue slipping through the cracks. Contact a revenue cycle management vendor, such as Kansas-based Assistentcy LLC, to see how your patients can get help understanding and paying their medical bills, so your hospital can get paid what it deserves. Contact Assistentcy LLC online or call today.