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Keep Your RCM Team from Feeling the Burn

If you have a favorite outdoor activity like swimming, gardening or cycling, you know the value of a good sunscreen during the bright summer months. Certain chemicals within sunscreen reflect or scatter light away from the skin—and others absorb dangerous rays so our skin doesn’t have to.

There’s no sunscreen to keep tedious or inefficient processes away from your revenue cycle team—but you can take steps to make sure your team doesn’t become fatigued. These three steps can help you increase efficiency—all while avoiding the type of burnout that can’t be prevented with your favorite sunscreen!

1. Make collecting payments at the time of service a habit. The best way to protect yourself against the sun is to routinely apply sunscreen as soon as you go outside. Similarly, you can train your front desk team to be prepared to collect balances due when patients check in. Here are a couple of suggestions:

  • Ask a simple question like “How will you be paying today?” This clearly sets the expectation that payment is due at time of service.
  • State that your policy is to collect at time of service, then let the patient know their required co-pay. Once they hand over their card, tell them about any additional balances due and ask if you can run their card to take care of that balance at the same time.

2. Check your progress throughout the day. To avoid sunburn, you probably check every half hour to see if your skin feels hot or is red. A parallel effort for your revenue cycle is to create an “if not, why” report that is updated throughout the day. This report should detail why a patient ended up not paying their co-pay or balance due and is designed to keep your front office mindful of their important role in collecting payments.

Additionally, successful collections from the report could be used as incentive for small rewards, or even friendly competition among staff.

3. Repeat your payment options. Just as you must reapply sunscreen, it’s beneficial to repeat payment options. Although you may offer a number of convenient, digital payment solutions, patients may not always know what they are. Staff should be prepared to repeat these options throughout the day – saying, for example, “We offer automated payment plans, on file payments, and have an online portal to pay your balance. Which is most convenient for you?”

Find even more ways to keep your staff cool and your collections hot with our on-demand webinar: Tame the Madness: Best Practices in the Front Office.