As we discussed in part one of this series, healthcare billing can often create problems and this can have a negative impact on a patient’s overall experience.
So, every hospital’s overall goal should be to make patient payment easier.
Here are some ideas to help facilitate this:
- Give patients multiple methods of payment (“71% of consumers saying that being offered multiple ways to pay increases their satisfaction” (Fiserv, “Eighth Annual Billing Household Survey, Fiserv Inc., 2016))
- Set up automatic payments and save credit card information for recurring bills.
- Consolidate multiple charges for the same visit into one bill.
- Use electronic/digital communication/billing whenever possible to speed up the process.
- Create online, user-friendly, customizable platforms to view and pay EOBs/bills.
- Offer multiple options to pay bills over extended periods of time.
- Offer discounts for paying early (even at time of service) or paying with cash.
- Educate staff on how to discuss payments with patients.
- Allow/offer the option of patients paying prior to service or while they are still on site.
- Know how much you are spending on debt collection and cut your losses when needed. Only $15.77 of every $100 is recovered once debt goes to collections. (https://nationallist.blog/2016/10/13/medical-debt-collection-difficulties/)
These solutions can help make bills less confusing, relieve patients’ financial burdens, and help hospitals reduce bad debt by seeing more bills paid and by seeing bills get paid sooner.