Your patient is your priority, That's always the bottom line. But what about you? As a provider, you work hard to ensure your patients are healthy and safe. So make sure you're getting paid properly for the services you're providing. This isn't meant to nickle and dime, but to maximize your revenue while ensuring the patient is still receiving the best quality care possible. Essentially, it's the best of both worlds. You get reimbursed properly and the patient walks away having a more comprehensive medical record. So without further ado, here are some things you can do to make sure you're earnings reflect your body of work.
Implement Charge Capture Software
You might be surprised to hear that many still use paper to capture patient notes and charges. Or maybe you're one of those still using paper, in which case this part is especially important. Having a charge capture solution that can efficiently and accurately capture all charges at the point-of-care can truly change a practice for the better. More robust solutions are often equipped with reporting and analytics, allowing for unprecedented insight into your practice. Cleaner and more thorough patient notes and simplified ICD-10 coding make it easier for billers to accurately bill patients, leading to faster reimbursements for you, the provider.
Dive Into Healthcare Analytics
As we said earlier, more robust charge capture solutions will often have built in analytics. You don't have to be a numbers genius to understand your practice though. You simply have to understand where, how, and why your practice may be coming up a little short financially. Speaking more specifically, how you're coming up short. While some believe that they submit all charges and never miss a beat, hard data often refutes these claims. Just take a look at the data and have a conversation with your practice administrator so you're both on the same page. That way you both have an understanding of where there might be some gaps.
Focus on Clinical Documentation & Reconciliation
Gathering patient data is one thing. Using it in a productive manner is something else entirely. Using the data collected from charge capture and clinical documentation can go a long way in effectively reconciling charges. That is, if you're charges are missing documentation or your documentation is missing charges. Too often, you'll see practice suffering financially because of lost or missing charges. With a reconciliation feature in place, you could stop the financial loss by appropriately identifying any charges that are missing documentation or vice versa. This saves you money and your administrative and billing teams extremely valuable time.
Track Your Quality Measures
Listen, MIPS is complicated. It's a deep, dark rabbit hole that can trap anyone. So we won't get into the specifics here. But if you'd like to read more on MIPS, you can check out our piece on the MIPS 2017 transition year. Back to tracking your measures though. The importance of keeping tabs on the care your providing can't be overstated. While you are able to pick your pace for the 2017 transition year, you still need to be ready to submit your quality measures to avoid the 4% penalty. You'll have to submit the minimum amount of 2017 data to Medicare to get around that. Collecting and sending in your performance data as well as how your practice used technology in 2017 can be the difference between earning a positive pay adjustment or not. So do it to it.
The Bottom Line
Caring for and healing your patient should always come first. But you also need to focus on why you might be coming up a little short on the financial end. This doesn't mean up-code like crazy to make more money. It means you should be fairly compensated for the care you provide. Charge capture, data analytics, clinical documentation, reconciliation, and tracking MIPS measures are just a few ways you can work towards earning more for you and your practice. A healthy practice equals a healthy patient after all!