As a cardiologist, you have spent years in medical school and doctorate programs, preparing yourself to care for your patients and help them live longer, healthier lives. Yet reports show that doctors regularly spend up to 50% of their time completing paperwork, including medical billing forms. Maybe it’s time to get back into the room with the patient, and let someone else handle the paperwork for your cardiology office.
Deciding to Outsource Cardiology Medical Billing
If you are one of the many cardiologists spending too much time on paperwork, perhaps outsourcing medical billing has been something you’ve considered in the past. The first step to outsourcing is to determine that it’s the best choice for your office.
With medical billing requirements constantly changing, your office may spend more time and money on training new employees, updating paperwork, and submitting claims than on caring for incoming patients. Before outsourcing your medical billing functions, it is easy to potentially overlook important policies. For example, Interventional coding is very complicated and costly. If the coder does not follow the proper coding rules, it creates a missed opportunity for reimbursement. Outsourcing medical billing functions can help alleviate you and your staff of hours of tedious work, while improving your bottom line.
One thing your cardiology practice should consider before outsourcing is how the medical billing and coding is currently handled. Does your practice utilize Consolidated Billing? Are the codes being split properly? Are you listing KX Modifiers for pacemakers on claims for payment? Does your practice utilize anatomical modifiers to denote which vessel the physician is coding for? If you find your practice is struggling with how the cardiology medical billing and coding is handled, it may prove useful to outsource to another company.
Every office is different, and what works best for one practice may not work best for another. Consider the pros and cons of outsourcing cardiology billing, including the overall effect on revenue streams, financial stability, and patient experience.
Steps to Outsource Medical Billing Functions
Once the decision has been made to outsource your cardiology billing, your practice will need to find the best provider for the services you need.
Interview Qualified and Establish Vendors: Only consider companies that have a stable history of services and deliverables. Avoid companies that refuse to provide references or contacts of clients.
Set Clear Expectations: Determine up front what it is that you want the medical billing company to contribute to your process. Understand what will be required of you and your staff, how problems will be handled, and what their responsibilities are.
Determine Communication Requirements: Always verify how, when, and through whom communication between your practice and the vendor will be completed.
Agree on the Cost: Verify the cost for services provided by the vendor, and the payment scheduled necessary. Get the quote in writing, and ensure it specifies any additional or variable fees.
Discuss Performance Measurements: Performance of the medical billing company should be measurable. Determine ahead of time what outcomes need to be achieved and how they will be measured.
Sign the Contract: Your agreement begins when you sign the contract and are ready to work with the billing company you’ve chosen. Consult with a business lawyer if there are questions in your contract that are you are not sure of or want explanation about.
Save Time and Money: Once you have made the decision to outsource your cardiology medical billing responsibilities, it’s time to put your focus back where it belongs - on your patients, their health, and their experience at your practice.
Practice Forces is aware of the requirements cardiologist must meet in order to receive the right compensation, ensure billing is accurate and not face penalties. Contact us today to see how we can help your cardiology practice.