26 Aug Good News, Bad News: Positive Impacts on Your Practice’s Bottom Line (Part 2)
Following up on our last post, we asked Eric Brodsky, the Chief Operating Officer of Midwest Center for Women’s HealthCare, and wealth of knowledge regarding all things revenue cycle, what significant changes he has seen in recent years that impact the bottom line of a practice. We gave you the bad news first, highlighting three of the significant changes he saw as having a negative impact on practices’ bottom lines. And now for the good news…
Eric sees the federal mandate of electronic funds transfers as a significant change that has had a positive impact on practices’ bottom lines. He sees this as a piece that is often overlooked by practices. Many continue to accept payment via virtual credit card. Processing this payment results in a merchant fee that reduces the payment made by the insurance company. Practices do not need to accept payments in this fashion. Eric files a federal complaint if a payor refuses to comply with this requirement. Through this rule, time and money are saved on the practice end, positively impacting the bottom line. (And, by the way, it’s actually a HIPAA violation for a payor to submit a paper check if they are a HIPAA covered entity!)
Another positive is online credentialing and recredentialing. The industry has come a long way with regard to consolidating credentialing forms, decreasing the disparate forms needed to credential and recredential physicians. Now that this piece is becoming more electronic with CAQH, PECOS, and IMPACT for Medicaid credentialing in the state of Illinois, this cumbersome process is made just a bit simpler with the move away from a paper format. Credentialing has a tremendous impact on a practice’s bottom line. Failing to credential even a single physician with a single payor can wreak havoc on a practice’s revenue cycle. The electronic streamlining of this process is a big positive for practices’ bottom lines.
Lastly, while the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) has certainly been a controversial subject since its implementation in 2010, one aspect that’s been generally favorable to medical practices is the mandate for coverage of screening services. And this has had a positive impact on practices’ bottom lines. Patient screenings and preventive care visits are covered in full. Removing cost barriers to this important care, encouraging a greater number of patients to seek this care, leads to better health care in general. Prior to the ACA it was often a challenge getting these types of services covered by insurance companies. This is a great positive for patient care, and with mandated coverage for these services, a great positive for practices’ bottom lines.