1. Choose a billing company that specializes in podiatry.
Medical billing companies are designed to serve a wide variety of practices and medical industries. That’s how these companies keep the lights on. By casting a wide net, these companies can pick up more clients and make more money.
Unfortunately, these are the same companies that try to fit square pegs into round holes. They provide cookie-cutter billing solutions, generalized customer service processes, and a wholly impersonal way of doing business. Of all of these one-size-fits-all medical billing companies, how many of them work with podiatrists, do you think? Not many.
If you’re a podiatrist, it just makes sense for you to choose a podiatry billing company. They’ll have a thorough understanding of your medical field, the medical products you dispense, the prescriptions you administer, the best billing strategies, and the problems you face in terms of customer service and unpaid bills. You don’t have to explain podiatry to people at these companies because they get it already — it’s the only type of doctor they serve. Instead of learning the basics of podiatry jargon and billing, they’re focused on accuracy, getting your clients to pay their bills, and focusing on excellent customer services for the wide variety of patients you work with on a daily basis.
The less time too spend trying to explain how your practice works to your outsourced billing team, the more time you can spend working with your patients and growing your practice. This leads to bigger profits, more efficient business operations, and most importantly, better patient outcomes.
2. Choose a podiatry billing company with customer service experience.
Patient relationships are hugely important for the growth of your business and the long-term retention of your clientele. However, this might be the most difficult part of running a medical practice. Patients are constantly confused and upset about their medical bills in relation to their insurance benefits, they don’t understand what their paying for, or they can’t/won’t pay their bills for whatever reason.
In some instances, older patients have a difficult time understanding how billing works, or they can’t quite comprehend their explanation of benefits. Sometimes, they aren’t even aware that they owe money in the first place.
Podiatry billing companies should be able to handle all kinds of patients when dealing claims rejections, billing disputes, misunderstandings, and other billing issues. They should have experience with people who are different ages, speak different languages, and have different medical issues, and handle all of these situations knowledgeably and professionally.
Why does this matter? Because the interactions between your podiatry billing company and your patients don’t reflect on your billing company — they reflect on your practice. If your patient has a negative interaction with a customer service rep from your podiatry billing team, they’re going to leave your practice a poor review on Google and tell their friends and neighbors how poor your practice is. Your billing company takes none of the blame — and while you can move on and find a different firm to manage your billing, the damage has already been done.
When choosing an outsourced billing team, find one with a proven track record of good customer service. Feel free to do some research on the internet, talk to other podiatrists you know in the industry, and read trade publications — it won’t be too difficult to figure out who is excellent at customer service and who isn’t.
3. Choose a company that keeps you in the loop.
There’s something comforting about a company that says “you don’t worry about a thing. We’ll take care of it.” But is that really what you want or need from a podiatry billing company? The best medical billing companies should allow you to have a certain degree of transparency — it’s not good enough for them to just say that your billing setup as a whole is in good shape. You should be able to quickly evaluate the state of your billing, profits, claims, and the like without any interference.
It’s not just a matter of communication — technology can be a huge barrier in reviewing your billing records. Some companies just don’t have the technological infrastructure, like a software system or online database, to allow you to scan and evaluate your records quickly.
When choosing a podiatry billing company, find one that has the technology and the transparency to ensure that you can access your billing information when it’s convenient to you. No pulling hairs, no dealing with outdated software systems, just instant access to the info you’re entitled to.
4. Choose a podiatry billing company that keeps your information secure.
Technology doesn’t just aid in transparency — it’s essential for security as well. If your patient or practice information is compromised in any way, it could have huge legal ramifications. There have been hundreds of patient information data breaches in 2018 already — so choosing a company you can trust with your information is more important than ever before.
The best podiatry billing software stores billing information on secure, encrypted servers that are hard for hackers, automated malware, and ransomware to access. Additionally, it should be carefully managed by your podiatry billing company to ensure it’s secure now and in the future. If your podiatry billing company doesn’t have much information about how they store your critical patient and billing information, you might want to consider hiring a different company for your billing and coding needs.
5. Choose a company with a passion for podiatry.
Deciding between hiring an in-house billing team and an outsourced, remote team can determine the efficiency, profitability, and reputation of your podiatry practice. WIthout the right billing team in place, you could be spending a ton of your time focused on billing instead of your patients.
These two types of billing teams have their pros and cons. In-house billing teams usually have a higher turnover rate and are more expensive than outsourced billing teams, but you can give immediate feedback to people who work in your office. Outsourced podiatry billing firms are cost-effective and house highly trained employees, but if you choose a billing company that doesn’t truly care about podiatry, you won’t see the efficiency and customer service-related results you’re looking for.
Fortunately, you can have the best of both worlds. At Hippocratic Solutions, we have a passion for podiatry and experience in the medical billing industry — and we work hard to find billing and coding solutions that are effective for podiatrists specifically, not just general physicians.
With an extensive knowledge of the the podiatry billing industry, experienced employees who know how to handle a variety of billing and customer service situations, and an easy-to-use software platform that makes your podiatry billing information more accessible than ever, you’ll rest easy knowing your billing is taken care of. When you spend less time worrying about your medical billing and more time improving your in-house staff, your facilities, your methods, and your practice in general, great things happen. You make more money, first of all. But you also have a happier staff, a better range of care, and ultimately, better patient outcomes.
If you have any questions, we’re happy to help. Call Hippocratic Solutions or contact us online for more information.