Alert Solutions Blog

Medical Debt Collection – 4 Best Practices for Healthcare Providers

Posted by Sarah Autore on Thu, Apr 06, 2017 @ 11:04 AM

As healthcare costs continue to grow, medical practices are looking for more effective ways to maintain their revenue stream. In recent years, focus has turned to improving upon delayed medical debt collection.

Delayed payment can result in a considerable portion of lost revenue for your medical practice. Additionally, collecting bill payments can often become a time-consuming and stressful task for medical staff.

If you would like to improve your medical debt collection process, consider these 4 best practices -

  1. Lay the groundwork for successful medical debt collection by educating patients and following best practices for patient communication prior to the MedicalOffices-12-resized-600.jpgtime of service.
    Providing an estimate and reviewing payment options beforehand will allow for patients to plan ahead and walk in knowing what to expect. Taking a proactive approach to this discussion with your patients will result in a smoother collections process.
  1. Make bills and all patient communications clear, concise, correct, and patient-friendly.
    The way you communicate with patients about their bill should be easy to understand, accurate, and patient-focused. It should also be cost-effective and manageable for staff to utilize. Implementing an automated collection reminder system will enable staff to send collection alerts and overdue balances to patients with the push of a button.
  1. Be consistent in key aspects of account resolution—from medical debt disputes to payment application.
    There are a wide range of situations that could occur when collecting payment from a patient. Establishing clear guidelines for staff to follow will allow for more effective account resolution. Utilizing an automated collection reminder system would also be a beneficial safeguard towards ensuring that all cases are dealt with routinely and systematically throughout the payment cycle.  
  1. Exercise good judgment about the best ways to communicate with patients about medical debt.
    All patients have different communication preferences. Communicating with them in a way they prefer will likely result in a smoother payment resolution. A majority of patients today prefer automated communications and easy payment options. Using an automated collection reminder system that allows for multiple communication methods such as text message, phone, or email, will help your medical practice reduce medical debt..
Alert Solutions can help your practice automate collection reminders. Download our brochure today!

Topics: automated collection reminders, automated patient notifications, Medical, patient communication

Stressed by Overdue Patient Balances? Try These 4 Collection Tips

Posted by Philip Young on Thu, Jul 09, 2015 @ 11:07 AM

Practice managers and their staff are always looking for creative ways to collect on unpaid patient balances, and for good reason: Patient co-payments amount to 20% of a medical practice’s revenue.

With the evolution of our nation’s healthcare system, experts say this could become an even greater problem as patients enroll in higher-deductible plans. Healthcare providers will become increasingly reliant on patient payments for their bottom line.

Did you know that a 2014 report revealed that 38% of debt held by third-party collectors originates in healthcare? Before you turn to a collections agency, there may still be some things you can try. Consider the following tips:

Tip #1: Discuss Out-of-Pocket Costs With Patients Before TreatmentCollectionREminders
Depending on the insurance coverage, it can be tricky to estimate a patient’s co-payment before care. But disclosing an estimate can help patients make arrangements for payment ahead of time and avoid overdue patient balances.
 
Tip #2: Accept Multiple Payment Procedures
Most medical practices already accept multiple forms of payment, such as cash, credit cards or checks. However, do you allow your patients to submit payments online? Check your patient portal, some may offer this functionality!

Tip #3: Take an Analytical Approach to Debt
Identifying patients who typically have overdue patient balances gives office staff the option to arrange payment plans before-hand.
 
Tip #4: Deploy Automated Collection Reminders
Medical practices are already using automated collection reminders to remind their patients of outstanding balances. Automating these collection reminders can:
 
- Reduce Length of Account Delinquency
- Increase Patient Response Rate
- Improve Staff Efficiency
- Reduce Outbound Calls
 
Alert Solutions can help your medical practice automate collection reminders, download our brochure today!
 
To read more collection tips, click here.

Topics: automated collection reminders, automated patient notifications, Medical, patient communication

Automated Patient Reminders Improve Medication Adherence, One Study Shows

Posted by Philip Young on Thu, May 28, 2015 @ 10:05 AM

We all forget to do things once in a while; it’s human nature. But the issue of patients forgetting to take their medicine is a serious one. Consider the chilling facts:

  • 125,000 people die each year in the U.S. from not taking their medication correctly.
  • Americans with chronic conditions forget to take their prescriptions 60% of the time.
  • Poor medication adherence accounts for 10-25% of hospital and nursing home stays.
  • This issue costs the healthcare industry $100 - $300 billion in remedial care annually.

Not only is it dangerous to patients’ health, but costly to the overall healthcare industry.

The good news is this: Medication adherence can be improved with minimal intervention!Pharmacy-1-1

Between 2010 and 2011, healthcare giant Kaiser Permanente conducted a study with more than 21,000 of their members. With the use of automated telephone reminders, patients were 4% more likely to take their prescriptions as directed and refill them on time.

While this may not seem like a lot, Bill Vollmer, Senior Investigator in the study, stressed that even a small improvement means a big difference for a large population.

Patients on statins, ACE inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers that received automated reminders also saw improvement in their cholesterol levels, the study found.

Is your medical practice using automated reminders to improve patient medication adherence? If not, Alert Solutions can help!

Download our brochure to learn more about Alert Solutions’ Patient Communication Suite today!

To read the rest of the study’s results, click here.

Alert Solutions' Patient Communication Suite Download Our Brochure!

Topics: automated refill reminders, automated collection reminders, automated patient notifications, Medical, patient communication, medication adherence

Property Managers: 4 Simple Steps to Hosting Effective Tenant Meetings

Posted by Erika Scialdone on Thu, Oct 16, 2014 @ 14:10 PM

Your tenant is your customer. In order maintain their residency you must keep them content and satisfied. If your tenant doesn’t like how you are managing your building they may not stay, and most likely tell other people not to reside in your building. In order to retain your tenants you should have meetings when possible to maintain a positive and problem-free relationship.

Here are 4 simple steps property managers can follow to have an effective meeting with your tenants:

1. Identify key tenant contacts at various levels of the organization.
All personnel should meet with their corresponding employee. “For example, your tenant coordinator/administrator should meet with their tenant counterpart, while a property manager or senior property manager should meet with their counterpart,” as stated by Building Engines.

2. Schedule tenant meetings with each tenant on a periodic basis.
All of your tenants should be well informed about your building. Schedule meetings with all of your residents on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis to communicate any issue or concern either party needs to discuss. happyrenters

3. Document the tenant meetings for record keeping. 
Take notes during all of your tenant meetings. Keep record of dialogue, service histories, and accounting information that could be utilized as reminders in future meetings. The more documentation you maintain the more valuable the tenant meeting will be.

4. Don’t assume you know what your tenants want.
Residents expect information online in real time. They want to track and reconcile service requests as soon as possible. All building materials such as the professional tenant handbook, building policies, procedures and internal and external amenities need to be easily accessed online. Another effective way to communicate with tenants is utilizing multiple channels of communication via SMS text message, email or voice. These communication channels are helpful when you need to connect to all of your tenants efficiently and fast. For example, notifying tenants about routine maintenances, payment reminders or emergencies.

Don’t forget to showcase everything that you have improved between meetings, such as energy efficient lighting or additional services that are at no cost to the tenant. Tenant retention is your highest priority. Organizing meetings will help keep your resident satisfied and can ultimately retain them as loyal customers.

To learn more about tenant retention and communication download our Property Management Brochure today.

Topics: property management, tenant retention, tenant communication, automated collection reminders, tenant notifications, tenant satisfaction

Property Managers: Automated Rent Reminders are Worth a Shot

Posted by Nina Caliri on Thu, Sep 04, 2014 @ 12:09 PM

Few things affect your property’s revenue stream more than vacant units and late rent payments. And while steady, consistent communication helps to retain good tenants, reasons behind past-due and delinquent rent is far, wide and unpredictable.

Is there anything you haven’t tried? Regardless of the number of units at your location, you’ve probably experienced tenants that do not pay their rent on time. Property managers need a non-intrusive method to help get that rent money in the door by the first of the month.AutomatedRentReminders

Many are now turning to automated rent reminders. Think about it – you’ve likely received an email or text message letting you know that your credit card or utility bill is soon due. Are you employing the same tactic at your rental properties? Sent through the communication channels your tenants prefer, a courtesy email, voice or SMS text message is all it takes.

Alleviate collections and help ensure the steady cash flow you depend on. To learn more about implementing automated rent payment reminders at your rental property, download our Commercial or Residential brochures today!

Topics: property management, tenant communication, automated collection reminders, tenant notifications

Minimize Account Delinquency with Automated Patient Collection Reminders

Posted by Cassie Breen on Wed, Jun 12, 2013 @ 15:06 PM

Medical practices continuously struggle with lost revenue due to delinquent accounts.  Medical practice staff can spend an enormous amount of time trying to collect bill payments and reconcile these accounts with patients.  This process can become overwhelming and complicated. 

collectionreminders resized 600

Simplifying this process with automated collection reminders can help medical offices more effectively manage their practice.  Automated collection reminders lessen the burden on staff and allow them to spend more time focusing on patients.  This also benefits the patient by having more time face-to-face with medical staff, ultimately increasing patient engagement and satisfaction.

The greatest advantage of automated collection reminders for medical practices is an increase in their bottom line.  In addition, automated collection reminders also provides medical practices with these benefits:

  • Reducing Length of Account Delinquency – Communicate early-on to reduce the chance of extended delinquency

  • Increasing  Patient Response Rate – Instantly provide patients with an easy and interactive way to pay their balance

  • Improving Staff Efficiency – Streamline collection processes to improve productivity and reallocate valuable staff resources

  • Reducing Outbound Calls – Automated messages in your own familiar voice can reduce manual calling while maintaining that personal touch

Does your medical practice have an automated billing system?  Download our Automated Collection Reminders Brochure today to learn more!

Topics: automated collection reminders, Medical, patient communication

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