Billing is one of the most important aspects of running a rehab therapy clinic, aside from patient care. But it can also be one of the most challenging, especially if you’re working with a billing process that doesn’t suit your clinic.
The right billing method should streamline your workflow, increase your profitability, and free up some much needed bandwidth. Just think, what could you do with some extra time? With that in mind, we’re going to devote the next handful of posts to some billing best practices to help you get your life back.
Our first tip covered auditing your existing process; tip two discussed the need to shop around; and tip three explained in-house versus outsourced billing. Here’s tip four:
#4: Ensure your billing integrates.
If you’re using an electronic medical record (EMR), it’s essential that your billing software and documentation software talk to each other.
Benefits of Billing Integration
In the past, PT billing and documentation have been separate processes, each with their own set of frustrations. However, new integrated options dramatically streamline the EMR/billing system workflow, allowing you to run your clinic more efficiently and focus on patient care.
Here are the top four revenue-increasing benefits of having an integrated PT EMR and billing system:
Increase Front Office Efficiency
When your billing software or service is integrated with your EMR, demographic and billing data seamlessly transmits from your documentation system to your billing company. This eliminates the tedious process of entering patient data into two systems, and this applies whether you complete your billing in house or outsource it. No double entry of data; no lost or missing insurance cards; no faxing of billing sheets. Talk about significant time, paper, and money savings!
Decrease Coding Errors
Many EMRs today feature built-in alerts and required fields, which ensures your claims generate cleanly without data errors or missing information. Eliminating the potential for human error in double data entry or ICD-9 codes can improve your reimbursement turnaround time dramatically. Not to mention that removing this tedious task allows your staff to concentrate more on customer service, scheduling, claims management, and copay collection.
Easily Access Documentation Attachments
Often, worker’s compensation claims require that therapists attach both daily notes and progress notes. With an integrated system, you won’t have to spend valuable time searching for the chart, making extensive copies, and sending the notes via fax or mail along with the claim resubmission. Instead, both you and the billing specialist can easily access the appropriate documentation within your EMR software and have it seamless transmit to your billing service.
Use Reporting Features for Improved Access to Financial Data
When your billing and documentation are linked, you have access to a much more robust set of financial data. And, when your integrated billing service puts that information together into easy-to-view reports, you can have an additional asset in managing your business. Through integrated billing, you can easily access and analyze numerous metrics and reports, such as:
- Services Analysis
- Denial Analysis
- Reimbursement Analysis
- Production Summaries
- Day Sheets
- Deposit Totals