It’s one of the most dreaded jobs at any practice – the need to ask for money from your patients. It is also one of the most important parts of a successful practice. Without timely payments, you simply can’t keep your practice going. And non-payment is a big problem. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to ease the pain of the patient payment process and improve the chance of getting paid.
Improve communication with patients
Patients are often confused about what they are being billed for. To be exact—74 percent of patients say they are confused by their bill! This is one of the key reasons they do not pay. They decide to simply ignore what they do not understand. Being able to accurately and consistently
communicate with your patients about their bill greatly reduces the chance that they will ignore a bill. Effective communication includes everything from simplifying your collection materials to communicating in the ways that patients are most likely to engage with. This may be through email, a patient portal, or even a text message.
Train, train, train…and re-train staff-
One of the most effective ways to receive a timely payment is to ask for it while the patient is still in the office. This means that your front end staff needs to be trained on the basics of insurance as well as how to ask for payment. Being professional but kind is a great way to reduce tension and improve the likelihood that you will receive the money you need. Using a script is another helpful technique. This is especially true for staff that feels really uncomfortable asking for payment.