Did you happen to catch this New York Times Magazine article last month? It begins with a moving story of an uninsured patient who suffers a terrible brain hemorrhage. Thankfully, she gets timely, effective treatment — but her condition requires many expensive services, including an air ambulance. Her bills totaled about $500,000. Although the patient […]
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Office visits represent a huge proportion of revenue for many practice types. Consistently accurate coding of office visits is important to avoid costly under-coding or inadvertently coding above the level that applies, which could lead to revenue take-backs. Since the E/M range constitutes such a huge piece of the overall reimbursement pie, payers are very […]
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When we work worth practices in adult primary care, OB/GYN, and pediatrics, we often recommend they consider proactively recalling patients for preventive visits. Because preventive visits are usually reimbursed entirely by insurance with no patient cost-sharing, helping patients stay current with preventive care can be a win-win for patients and the practice. A preventive visit […]
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It’s a fact of medical practice management life that unilateral decisions by other organizations can show up out of the blue and negatively affect the practice business, such as when a payer changes reimbursement terms or stops paying for a code that was previously reimbursed. In situations like these, practices have no obvious short-term option […]
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Q4 is here! For many practices, it’s the busiest time of the year, as patients who’ve been timing their care to maximize the value of their insurance coverage or their tax deductions are now ready to schedule. During this period, a greater proportion of reimbursement will usually be collected from health plans, rather than patients. […]
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Considering outsourcing your medical billing? Not sure you know all you need to know to choose wisely? This upcoming free webinar will help you refine your screening strategy as you look for the perfect billing partner, and prepare to set a productive relationship. Some of the topics we’ll hit on: why technology matters; what’s the […]
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I stumbled upon this quote by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently: I think a simple rule of business is, if you do the things that are easier first, then you can actually make a lot of progress. This makes so much sense for any enterprise. If you’re stuck, try chipping away at the easiest part […]
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Capko & Morgan has had the honor of collaborating with the MedData Group on several recent MedData Point surveys. This month, we worked together on one of our favorite subjects: billing and collections. The results may reflect some subtle but interesting changes to recent trends. For the past few years, it has seemed that the […]
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A recent Peterson-Kaiser Health System Tracker study revealed an interesting finding: average copayments are declining. Their study, which analyzed claims data from Truven MarketScan, found that average copay amounts paid by patients decreased by 26% from 2004 to 2014. Seems like a positive trend for patients and practices … except that it’s not. It’s part […]
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Ahhh, January. We’re already six days in, and it’s still hard to believe we’re a week into a brand new year.  Perhaps especially so if low volume has you moving through your days more slowly — and worrying about what your revenue numbers will be at month- and quarter-end. The January effect on medical practices […]
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It’s almost that time again: deductibles re-set in less than a month. Got your game face on? For many practices, the end of the year is so busy, it’s hard to think about planning for slow business in January, February and March.  Ironically, the cause of the busyness in Q4 is related to the cause […]
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Anyone who encourages me knows they’ll get an earful about front office technology tools — they’ve become a passion of mine.  I’m referring to things like: Patient responsibility payment estimators (e.g., Wellero, Navicure, Zirmed) Check-in tablets and kiosks (e.g., Phreesia) Online patient payment tools like portals and pre-payment sites (e.g., SpendWell) Patient payment apps (e.g., […]
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Outsourcing your medical billing to a billing service has the power to make your practice much easier to manage.  It can also increase your profitability. But as the world of reimbursement continues to evolve, it’s important to stay involved with the process.  If you’ve adopted a “that’s off my plate now” approach to using a […]
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Choosing a new medical billing service is stressful. Few activities have more of an impact on practice profitability, after all.  But with the risks of choosing comes upside, too — and not just in the opportunity to have your billing handled by dedicated professionals. Switching to a third party billing service (or a new service) […]
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I’ll be presenting a free webinar on Thursday, July 16, with tips and strategies for managing your medical billing service. If you’re thinking of outsourcing your billing, or if you already outsource it and aren’t sure you’re getting everything you hoped for from the relationship, this webinar is for you. This is part two of […]
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If you’ve been thinking about outsourcing your medical billing — or switching medical billing services — my upcoming 30-minute webinar can help. “Eight Questions to Ask When Evaluating Medical Billing Services” will be presented on June 25 at 10AM Pacific/1PM Eastern. If you’ve been wondering how to quiz your billing service options — or just […]
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What’s the worst thing that can happen when you staff aren’t trained to manage patient deductibles and collect up front?  It’s not that you won’t ultimately get paid.  There is something worse that can happen, and it’s not that uncommon: your practice can end up losing the revenue for the service and losing the patient. […]
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If you’ve been thinking about outsourcing your medical billing — or switching medical billing services — my upcoming mini-webinar can help. “Eight Questions to Ask When Evaluating Medical Billing Services” will be presented on June 25 at 10AM Pacific/1PM Eastern, and will last about 30 minutes — a quick hit of knowledge and you’ll be […]
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There’s still time to sign up for my webinar “Patient Financial Responsibility: Tackling Your Practice’s Biggest Profitability Problem.”  It’s Tuesday, 6/9, at 10AM Pacific/1PM Eastern — and it’s free, thanks to our sponsors at Spendwell Health and Wellero. There will be time for questions, and the webinar will also be recorded, so you’ll have the […]
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It’s no secret that physician practices are challenged more than ever to get paid in full for the services they render. Deductibles keep getting higher – and more patients are facing them. What’s more, new research from the Kaiser Family Foundation shows that only about half of insured American families have sufficient resources available to […]
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The portion of your revenue that must come from patient collections has skyrocketed.  If you haven’t mastered patient collections, you risk losing more of your practice’s earned revenue than ever before.  But — on the plus side — there are more new ways to tackle this problem than ever before. I’ve got a new, free […]
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The portion of your revenue that must come from patient collections has dramatically increased over the past decade. And higher copays and deductibles aren’t going away – in fact, they’re becoming the standard. A recent Kaiser Family Foundation study determined that average deductibles for patients on employer-sponsored plans have more than doubled, and now average […]
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Many physicians we work with face the tough decision of whether to keep their practices independent or join a larger organization.  Oftentimes, physicians and practice managers believe they must consider such a move to “gain a larger footprint” for negotiations with payers. The advantages of larger groups in payer contract negotiations versus small and solo […]
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As we’ve posted here before, almost all practices face the risk of a cash flow crunch in January and, really, through all of Q1, thanks to the deductible reset.  (January’s revenue collections are sometimes also hit lower volume in December because of the holidays — a double whammy.) In our experience, the decline in revenue […]
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The deductible reset is looming in January, and it’s poised to wreak its usual havoc with cash flow. Cash-flow impact could easily be even worse this year, given that deductibles have likely increased and become more of a problem for many of your patients. Naturally, alerting patients to the possibility that they will be responsible […]
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Even this late in the year — when we typically assume many patients will have met their deductibles — we are hearing from practices that some patients seem to be delaying or avoiding care because of concerns about costs.  This is not limited to the ACA plans, which tend to have high deductibles, especially on […]
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Physicians and practice managers love using online tools to help run their practices. Whether you’re submitting payroll, doing some online banking, reconciling a credit card statement or confirming patient eligibility you’re using a connected network of devices, any of which could pose a serious threat to the well-being of your practice. While I’ve blogged here […]
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Interested in learning how to get more from your relationship with your third party biller?  Or considering hiring a medical billing service? “Get the Best From Your Medical Billing Service” is Laurie Morgan’s most popular ebook — and Amazon is offering it for free on October 29. Although the book is optimized for the Kindle platform, […]
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