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Ways for Medical Businesses to Streamline Systems and Improve Services

 

As a healthcare provider, you're under constant pressure. Providing efficient, timely, and high-quality care to your patients is always the first priority. Balancing patient needs with the time and resources required to properly document everything you do can be difficult in even the best of times. Dealing with a dozen different insurance providers, diligently documenting and storing patient records, and keeping up on the latest developments in patient care can be daunting. Here are some key tips to streamline your practice so you can always put the patient first.

 

1: Streamline Record Keeping and Storage

There is a fine balance to documenting a patient visit during the visit and directly engaging with the patient and their needs. On the other hand, carving out time after each visit to document everything that went on means you're spending more time documenting and less time treating your patients. One way to manage the constant demands on staff and clinician time is to hire one or two dedicated staff members to manage records. Being able to quickly dictate a patient note or drop off documents to be scanned by a dedicated team member means your clinicians can spend more billable time with patients and less time and money documenting. Investing in a records management team is crucial to keeping costs low and billable hours high.

 

2: Use a Payment Solution to Simplify Billing

Billing is one of the most time consuming, and therefore money consuming, aspects of any medical practice. Billing agents not only deal with a wide array of insurance providers, each with its own unique billing systems and codes but also interact directly with patients more than any other non-medical staff. Collecting co-pays, chasing down patients with past due bills, and fighting with insurance companies on behalf of your patients for coverage typically requires multiple full time billing agents. For these reasons, consider patient management solutions for easier payment processing. This one step can help reduce the burden of billing that so many medical businesses endure.

 

3: Plan for Scheduling Issues

As often happens in any patient-facing medical practice, scheduling issues will arise. No patient will be the same as another, and many people will require more time with a clinician to meet their needs. You may have providers who are faster or slower than others. A patient may be late for their appointment and expect to be seen anyway. Building some empty space into the schedule of each provider is an essential way to prevent cascading failure in the patient schedule and keep people moving.

 

4: Set Policies and Stick to Them

Any medical practice needs to work hard to set policies that protect patients, staff, and the business' bottom line. If your office has issues with chronically late patients, don't see them beyond ten minutes past the start time of their appointment. If your office has self-pay patients who are chronically behind on payments, don't see them until they have set up a manageable payment plan with your staff. Create firm, clear policies for patients and staff to follow, and don't deviate from them.

 

5: Stick to What You're Good at

An important tip for any business is to stick to what you're good at. If your office focuses on pediatrics, it doesn't make any sense to add services that cater to geriatric patients. Your staff and clinicians are used to providing excellent care within their framework, it's never a good idea to stress them and your patients by expanding services unnecessarily.

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