Without proper planning, a medical clinic can quickly find itself overwhelmed by a high workload. There can be an influx of patients due to an easily transmissible virus, a shortage of staff due to sickness, or an unexpected resignation. But the unexpected does not need to cause crippling issues.
If management knows the available options and effectively implements them into the clinic’s day-to-day operations, the overall stress of staff can be greatly reduced.
Back when appointment scheduling was done manually, and health records needed physical copies, it made sense to have staff dedicated to these tasks. But with the integration of digital technology into medical practices, it is no longer necessary for all tasks to be done by hand.
Managers can easily automate appointment scheduling and insurance billing to free up staff to handle greater priority tasks. Consolidating information into a client portal makes it much faster to search for information and eliminates many administrative errors common to patient health records.
The best technology on the market and the best strategy devised will amount to nothing if your staff does not adopt them. If management wants to take office operations in a different direction, they should clearly explain the process to everyone to ensure they are all on the same page.
Managers should have a training schedule in place for onboarding new hires. Do not trust everyone will be trained on an “as needed” basis because that could leave the office ill-equipped when it matters most.
Use Software to Manage Credit Balances
Accounting is one of the more complicated aspects of running a medical practice, and it is vital to running a successful business. With up to a third of payments made on credit, keeping accurate records becomes even more time-consuming. If you utilize available software properly, you can greatly reduce the number of labour hours dedicated to this process.
Such software can make it simple to navigate through credit balances and identify overpayments or posting issues. Your practice likely has thousands of balances to clear, so it is no longer practical to manage transactions manually and still meet deadlines. Use NextGen EPM to manage credit balances and keep all of your finances on track
Make it Mobile
The convenience of making payments anytime, anywhere with your smartphone is hard to beat, as shown by the increasing use of mobile phones in the e-commerce marketplace. If you are interested in reaching more clients and increasing their responsiveness, it is best to meet them on their terms.
Optimize your billing to make it easy for them to pay straight from their mobile devices. This includes making the invoices easy to understand and clear about what actions need to be performed. The fewer questions a client has, the quicker they will be able to follow through.
If their only options for payment are to send it via mail or drop it off, you could have payments delayed by weeks. By making the process more convenient for them, you make the process easier for yourself.
Offer the Option to Adjust
The need to change is inevitable and is as true for your clients as it is for you. If a client needs to update their insurance or payment method, there should already be a process in place to do so. Make it easy for them to find out how to do it by providing digital resources on your website. This will also reduce the number of inbound calls the front desk needs to answer.
If clients are not paying their bills in a timely manner, send automated follow-ups to remind them of their responsibility. Many likely are able to pay but simply forgot about the bill. In that event, they’ll be thankful for a courtesy reminder that keeps them from dealing with a collection agency.
Simplify to Excel
Simplifying processes in these key areas will help everyone involved perform at a higher level. Your medical practice will see better returns due to the increased efficiency. And your client satisfaction will likely improve as a result of these streamlined operations, leading to better retention.