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Posts from 2018-12

How to Choose the Right Payment Processing System for Your Healthcare Business

How to Choose the Right Payment Processor

Are you trying to decide on what payment processor to get for your healthcare business? Read on to learn how to choose the right one.

Keyword(s): Payment Processor

Most healthcare providers report it takes longer than a month to collect on the bills they send. The number of unpaid healthcare bills has also been rising over the last few years.

Some challenges in healthcare billing are less about the ability to pay and more about payment processing. Support for electronic payments is universal among patients, but providers still use paper. The accepted methods of payment are usually limited as well.

One thing is clear. The right payment processor can help you manage the revenue cycle more efficiently. With the right payment process, you can overcome the challenges of the revenue cycle.

How do you know you've found the right processor for your healthcare business? Our guide can help you determine the best selection for your business.

Look for Key Features with a Payment Processor

Not every healthcare provider has the same needs. The payment solution you choose for your business will need to reflect your unique needs.

There are some key features almost any processor should provide with a solution. These include:

  • Online bill payment services
  • Follow up, such as text reminders
  • Security features
  • Point-of-service devices
  • Data collection that accommodates your needs
  • Preauthorization and certified payment processing

Other features should work to shorten the payment cycle. In addition, everything should be offered in one convenient, integrated platform. If a provider doesn't offer these features, it's time to look somewhere else.

Think about Data and Security

There are many rules about the collection and use of data in the financial sector. In the payment processing industry, the largest credit card processors created security standards.

The regulatory framework is different for the healthcare sector. For example, you'll need to make sure your payment processing system is compliant with HIPAA. It's one reason data collection must be customized to your business's needs.

Security is another important consideration, whether you're in healthcare or not. Credit card information and other client data can be quite sensitive.

In the healthcare industry, though, you have additional concerns. For example, information about a diagnosis can harm a patient's job prospects.

You're already aware that data security, storage, and management are important. They're just as important when you select a payment processor for your business.

Look for companies that go above and beyond. They do more than meet the bare minimum set out in standards and regulations. They're always one step ahead, creating better security for your data and your clients.

Take a Peek Under the Hood

What's powering the payment processing system you're adopting for your business? We've already mentioned that the provider should supply point-of-service devices.

Integration is key. Your business already uses solutions for everything from patient intake to scheduling appointments. If your new payment processing system doesn't integrate, you're in for a mountain of trouble.

You can avoid this costly scenario by taking a peek at what's behind the services you're signing up for. Ask about how any payment processing system will work with your current systems. If the platform doesn't integrate with your accounting software, it's time to consider another provider.

Think about Value, Not Price

Price is a particular sticking point when it comes to credit card processors. It's one reason so many businesses choose not to offer credit card payments at all.

You might be tempted to go with the payment processor who offers you the lowest price. This is often a mistake.

Instead of thinking about price, take a look at value instead. One payment processing system might be more expensive than another. That might be because it offers you more services and flexibility.

In other words, the most expensive option provides better value.

Don't forget about the importance of customer service when you're calculating value. A company that charges more might be a better bet because they offer you more support. The bargain system may offer little to no support at all, which actually costs you more in the long run.

Ask about Scalability and Flexibility

How big is your healthcare company right now? Maybe you're a start-up getting off the ground. You might be a well-established private practice, but you've brought on a new partner and want to grow.

Can your payment processor grow with you?

Many companies make the mistake of signing up for a system that offers them no room for growth. The solution looks right at the time, but the healthcare provider soon finds the processor can't keep up.

Ask about the different services your processor provides. Can you upgrade services or add services as you need them? Can you scale back on services you're not using as much as you thought you would?

You may need additional services, such as collections or electronic medical record management. The best providers can help you integrate these functions for a streamlined process.

The best payment processing system will be able to grow with you every step of the way.

What Payment Options Are Available?

Another key aspect to look at when you select a system in which payment options you can offer to your patients. Bill payment times are often improved when patients choose from several payment methods.

We've already talked about credit card processing. Another option you want to make sure is available is electronic payments. This is often the easiest and fastest way for patients to pay you. It benefits both you and patients.

Build a Relationship with a Partner You Can Trust

The right payment processing solution can help you conquer the challenges of the revenue cycle. More than anything, you need a payment processor you can trust. Look for processors that are recommended by others in your industry.

If you're still not sure what the right payment system for your business looks like, talk to us today. We can help you determine your needs and find the perfect fit for you.

Taking Steps to Build a Profitable Medical Practice

 

Three Person Looking at X-ray Result

Profitability.

If you want your medical practice to last for the long-term, focusing on profitability is key. Unfortunately, many medical professionals lack the knowledge needed to run their practice like a successful small business. Understanding how to take care of your patients and offer great services is obviously important, but having the skills to nurture your bottom line is just as essential.   

By increasing your practice's profitability, it will be much easier to grow and sustain your practice for many years to come. We've compiled some tips to help you boost your practice's profits, check them out below!  

Treat Your Patients like Royalty

Medic Treating Patient

Businesses always say 'the customer is always right'. However, medical practices rarely take this sort of approach towards their patients. As a healthcare organization it is important to realize that you are not the only practice in town and patients can easily switch to a different provider for a number of reasons.   

Because of this reason, it is so valuable to create a plan for ensuring your patients have the best possible experience when they come in for a visit. Think about what it must be like them at all points of interaction with your practice. From the moment they call for the first time, are they having to wait unnecessarily? Is your staff able to answer all their questions with efficiency and expertise?   

Making your patients the focus of your efforts will help put all your other operations and priorities in perspective. Once your practice is making strides in creating better experiences for patients, your patients will increase their loyalty and also spread the word to their friends and family. Positive word of mouth referrals are one of the best ways to increase your base of patients and in turn - your bottom line!  

Understand Your Industry

Syringe Floating Near Person's Hand

The healthcare industry is constantly changing these days. With new innovations, fast-moving mergers and changing marketing strategies, it is vital to understand the larger picture that surrounds your practice. Creating a strategy for the future of your practice can help you create a nice niche to further concentrate your resources. In fact, focusing on specific expertise or areas of medicine can really help avoid the waste of energy in unprofitable areas.   

What are some profitable areas in which you could leverage your medical expertise? What are the growth trends within your industry that you could incorporate into your practice? These are the types of questions you should be asking if you want to grow and become sustainably profitable in the long-run.   

Keep your attention on macro trends and leverage them in any way you can. By creating and implementing a plan for how you want your practice to grow, your profitability will surely rise.   

Get Smart About Your Revenue Management

Person Holding Black and Grey Pen

Collecting revenue and processing billing is a much more difficult task than it used to be. The rules and regulations change often as do billing codes themselves. For a medical practitioner it is important to stay focused on their skills in medicine and outsource more complicated areas of their business to specialists.   

Billing and revenue management is a great area in which to outsource an important function of your practice and improve collections and profitability at the same time. Great providers like Billing Savi can help your practice thrive in this area and grow more successful. 

To learn more about great building a profitable medical practice, please contact us by clicking here