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  • Writer's pictureMuhammad Sair Khan

Patients consider the billing process when choosing a medical provider

In a recent survey of 1,000 healthcare consumers, 76 percent said a practice’s billing process is important or somewhat important to their decision to seek care there. In a time where health insurance and billing has become more complex, patients value simple, straightforward processes that help them understand the cost of their care.

How to make the billing process simple for your patients

If your facility has a poor billing process, you might find that patients don’t come back—and don’t refer others to your care, even if you offer high-quality clinical treatment. Survey respondents said they would find another health provider if they faced billing issues such as:

  • Incorrect or confusing bills

  • Difficult or unorganized billing and payment processes

  • Preferred payment option is not accepted

  • No flexibility with payment options and financing plans

  • Significant delays in receiving a medical bill after an encounter

To keep your great reputation, make billing simple for your patients with these tips.

Offer Payment Options

There are a million ways to pay today. Make payment as simple as possible on your patients by offering more options besides billing insurance then billing for the balance via mail. You can accept:

  • Cash

  • Credit or debit card payments

  • Payment plans

  • Paypal

You could also offer discounts for paying upfront or give patients the option to set up recurring, automatic payments. All of these options make it easy for your patients to manage their bill.

Provide Cost Estimates Before Treatment

Patients want to be able to budget for their care. Give them a cost estimate upfront so they understand what the are agreeing to when they choose their treatment. This sort of transparency builds trust between you and your patients.

You should always tell patients about any co-payments that are due and collect those fees upfront. However, if possible, go the extra mile and tell them the expected out-of-pocket costs for their care before providing treatment.

Use Online Payment Options

Many patients also expressed a desire for a digital experience. By offering online bill pay, the ability to view bills online, and the ability to view insurance information online, you can make billing and budgeting simple. Again, this process can speed up payment and build trust through transparency.

Handle Insurance Discrepancies

Patients can end up spending hours contacting your office and their insurance providers to figure out discrepancies with billing, such as higher out-of-pocket costs than expected. You can make this easier on your patients by using your existing relationships with insurers to work out discrepancies yourself. Though this requires your billing staff to put in a little extra time, your patients will be grateful for the help in sorting out complications.

Making these changes to your billing practices not only increases patient satisfaction, but may also increase the likelihood that you receive payment from patients. For more help on streamlining your billing processes and making payment easy on patients, contact Datapro billing for consultations, staff training and more.

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