Managing accounts receivable (A/R) is an important challenge faced by all healthcare providers. Fortunately, there are steps a clinic can take to collect outstanding balances faster and maximizing cash flow. Below are three strategies for reducing A/R days.
1. Prioritize Denials
Eligibility denials and rebills are two of the most common causes of lengthy revenue cycles. Focusing on improving financial clearance rates not only helps eliminate cash flow shortages, but also improves the patient-provider relationship. Take advantage of reporting and tracking tools to stay on top of accounts with 90 or more A/R days, and focus your clinic's efforts on collecting same-day co-pays and minimum deductibles from payers.
2. Focus on Collaboration
Cross-functional collaboration is a crucial factor in reducing A/R days. By improving communication between the A/R management team and medical staff, you ensure everyone has the information they need to submit claims in a timely manner. Schedule a weekly meeting between key staff members from across the organization to discuss projections, progress, and goals for the following week.
3. Consider Outsourcing A/R Tasks to a Third Party
Managing A/R in house can take up a significant amount of time, money, and staff resources that could otherwise be focused on running your business. One option for reducing your workload while also shortening your revenue cycle is to outsource A/R tasks to a third party that specializes in healthcare accounts. Not only do third-party A/R representatives do the time-consuming work of pursuing unpaid accounts, but they also facilitate the process of appealing denied claims.
Managing A/R effectively is a matter of prioritizing claim denials, facilitating collaboration between key staff members, and improving financial clearance rates. When implemented correctly, the above steps will help improve your collection rates and reduce your A/R days.