By Andy Popple
Are you too busy to take a hard look at your operations to be able to make the changes needed to make the impact your practice needs to be really financially and operationally robust? Are you putting off inevitable decisions because daily routines do not give you the thinking time you need? Are you keeping a “warm body” on payroll because of the hassle? Do you know what changes need to be made but don’t have the determination to really make them?
While this may seem to be a no brainer; too many times, employees are left to their own devices in completing their daily assigned tasks. We hire people because we have a need; training gets cut short as the daily routine of the practice pace leaves little room for proper orientation. Or even worse we ask them to read through policy and procedure manuals without making the time to really explain why the practice developed those policies.
In the time it takes you to read this blog, 57% of your patients will be asked a question about what doctor they use….why they like or dislike. Do you know what they are saying? If you don’t then you are not listening.
Your practice management system is your healthcare practice’s pathway to the revenue stream. Your biggest dollar investment is probably your practice management system (although now, your EHR and IT costs may exceed PM)
Of course these should be the words we all live by and how we interact with others. But in this day of instant everything, web tools to connect us to more and more places and people; we may forsake quality and accuracy for expediency. We quickly and quite easily build Face Book pages, we post on twitter, build patient portals to give patient access to needed information. …..but am wondering if we don't do all this much too quickly and without really examining our goals and purposes for doing so.
The single most important reason to lowering your claim denials is simple, to bring in additional revenue by less delay of payment and lowering billing costs.
In the ever changing, ever shifting world of healthcare, one focus for a practice must be to evaluate and develop more effective and efficient work processes. With the future of healthcare legislation uncertain, practices must improve their overall efficiency in order to remain competitive in an, unfortunately, unpredictable industry. Medical Management Services does this through continual improvement initiatives. A process improvement team, along with various specialized support staff, reviews current workflows, identifies areas for improvement, then initiates an improvement plan to increase efficiency. Areas of focus range from check-in procedures, spatial arrangement of work stations, charge slip (super bill) creation and entry, to working claim denials. Continual improvement processes are ongoing and serve to compliment the inherently dynamic work environment of medical practices.
Health care marketing is undergoing dramatic reinvention and change, due to emerging trends, reform uncertainties, emergence of social marketing and renewed focus on quality, outcome and prevention. Executives are demanding higher impact and bigger returns from marketing investments; and marketing professionals are more closely aligning their efforts with strategic objectives, customer experience and integration of communications across multiple platforms and channels.
Just the other day an opportunity came around to see a physician for a physical. Shock and disbelief best represents as to what happened while there. First, manually complete 15 various pieces of paperwork. Ten of those pieces of paper were for a paper chart. A paper chart! All I can say is WOW, 10 minutes could have been saved off that visit without having to write the same information over and over again.
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