Medical billing outsourcing is a relatively common practice. Many doctors decide to turn over their billing to a medical billing company, a practice management firm, or an individual who provides these services from home.
Advantages of Medical Billing Outsourcing
There are a number of reasons why doctors choose to outsource their medical billings.
Doctors Focus on Medicine, Not Insurance Paperwork
Medical billing is a time-consuming task, and doctors need to focus their attention and their energies on their patients. When they outsource their medical billing needs, they can concentrate their efforts on practicing medicine, which is why they became doctors in the first place.
Outsourcing Frees Up Office Staff Time
If the doctor's office is a small one, then the office staff members are trying to look after multiple duties at once. More than likely, they don't have the time to concentrate on medical billing exclusively. They have other clerical duties that need to be attended. When the medical billing is outsourced, then the office staff members' time is freed up to deal with the day-to-day running of the office, including scheduling appointments and managing patient files.
Less Chance of Claims Being Rejected
If medical billing is being handled by an individual or a firm that specializes in this area, the employees have the experience needed to prepare claim forms quickly and efficiently. This means that there is less chance that the claim will be rejected by the insurance company due to an error or an omission on the form.
Outsourcing Improves Security
When an outside source is handling medical billing, it reduces the chance of someone trying to commit fraud. The person or the company preparing billing documents is an independent set of eyes who will be able to spot potential problems in the financial records of the medical practice.
The Doctor Gets Paid Quickly
In a situation where the medical billing duties are outsourced, someone is assigned to perform those duties without the distraction of trying to juggle other office duties as well. Any questions about claims or delays in payment are dealt with promptly by someone who is familiar with the policies and procedures insurance companies are using. This knowledge means that payment for services can be issued quicker, which improves the cash flow for the practice.
The Medical Practice Operates Like a Business
While a person may choose to become a doctor because he or she wants to help people or finds medicine interesting, that doesn't necessarily mean that the individual knows how to run a business. A medical practice is a business, pure and simple. The doctor may spend his or her day caring for patients, but also needs to have a good handle on the practice's income and outgoing expenses.
A medical billing firm will be able to generate reports indicating how much money the practice billed and was actually paid on a regular basis. This information will help the doctor determine how well the practice is being managed and the company may be able to help the doctor come up with strategies to make the practice more profitable over time.
Another advantage to having regular financial reports generated by the medical billing company is that the reports may help the doctor negotiate lower premiums for medical malpractice insurance. The information contained in the reports will help to pinpoint monthly expenses and the types of patient concerns with which the doctor deals.
There are many reasons why medical billing outsourcing makes good sense for doctors. Part of running a successful business means delegating some responsibilities to other people, and doctors need to be savvy business owners as well as medical practitioners.