Betsy Hyder will be the first to tell you that compliance is anything but sexy—and yet, as WebPT’s go-to compliance resource, her heart beats for PQRS, FLR, G-codes, and every Medicare abbreviation and acronym in between. “Basically, it’s my job to make sure we’re providing everything we’re supposed to so that therapists get paid,” she said.
And while you’d be hard-pressed to find a physical therapist—or anyone, really—who relishes digging through pages upon pages of jargon-laden government documents, Betsy has a passion for helping the rehab therapy community make sense of the hefty library of rules and regulations they must follow. “I just think [therapists] are really good people,” she said. “They want the best for their patients, and I want them to get paid every cent they’re owed.”
Of course, Betsy’s path to compliance rockstardom wasn’t exactly a straight shot—after all, it’s a pretty obscure niche for someone with a background like hers. Born and raised in Indianapolis, Betsy was recruited out of high school into the industrial engineering program at Purdue University. “At that time, there was a huge focus on getting women into engineering,” she said.
After graduation, Betsy accepted a job at a manufacturing company in Scranton, Pennsylvania—a city that, unbeknownst to her, would later achieve national pop-culture fame as the setting of the hit show The Office. Eventually, though, she ended up in the telecommunications industry, which gave her the opportunity to travel—a lot. By the time she finished her decade-long stint at AT&T, she had passport stamps from Brazil, Venezuela, Argentina, Peru, Israel, Japan, and the United Kingdom—just to name a few. (She also managed to establish a driving record in the UK, where the rules of the road are a bit different than they are here in the states—but that’s another story for another blog post.)
But all that jetsetting—though fun and exciting—left Betsy yearning to put down some real roots. “It made me realize that I wasn’t very connected to my community, so I started looking specifically for a job that would allow me to stay in the US,” she said.
She eventually ended up in Atlanta, where, in addition to her day job, she began volunteering her time to work with at-risk youth. That led to an “a-ha” moment that prompted a full-fledged career change. “I realized I wanted to be involved in policy [for at-risk children],” she said. “So I completely switched gears and went into law.” After earning her law degree, she took on a position in the court system—one that involved working with the court’s electronic record system.
Betsy’s exposure to youth-related court cases and the foster care program inspired her and her husband to become foster parents. Later, they legally adopted two children—Demetrius and Bella—and relocated to their current home-base of Davis, California. “There’s a great education and public school system here,” Betsy said.
While she spent some time working with the court management system in the Golden State, she eventually made her way into the medical records space. After getting her feet wet in another healthcare technology company, Betsy caught wind of WebPT. “I was very interested in what WebPT was doing,” she said. “I was really impressed. I saw a lot of webinars and blogs geared toward educating the stakeholders, and I liked that.”
Betsy knew WebPT was exactly the kind of company she wanted to jump onboard with—and a few months ago, she did just that, joining the WebPT ranks as the company’s compliance resource. In that role, she supports the product team in the area of compliance and and helps ensure that the WebPT application always has its users’ backs when it comes to all of the rules, regulations, and documentation requirements that apply to them. To say that’s a tall order would be somewhat of an understatement. “It’s challenging, and it’s constantly changing,” she said. “Because it’s so dynamic, it makes it tough to make sure we can capture everything that impacts WebPT and not miss a detail that could be important.”
But Betsy isn’t afraid of a challenge—especially when therapists’ livelihoods are on the line. So while most of the healthcare community moans and groans each time Medicare releases a new crop of rules, Betsy dives in with gusto. And ever the glass-half-full kind of person, she believes that, in general, programs like PQRS and functional limitation reporting do serve a purpose. “I think better outcomes come from aggregating this kind of data from the industry, so my advice [to the therapy community] is to embrace it and kind of run with it for the greater good,” she said. “It’s stuff we do anyway—so why not write it down?”
When she’s not knee-deep in Medicare legalese or catching up with her Phoenix-based WebPT colleagues via webcam, Betsy stays busy shuttling her kids to and from their activities—namely, softball and baseball tournaments. “When you’re raising kids, their interests become your interests,” she said with a laugh. Still, she and her husband, Chuck, manage to find some time for traveling, golfing, and cooking. They’re also very active in their church.
All in all, Betsy is totally happy with where she’s at, both personally and professionally. Although she has covered a lot of ground over the course of her career, she doesn’t plan on making any drastic changes anytime soon. “I’m just really grateful to be part of this team,” she said. “Even though I’m working remotely, everyone is really great about keeping me connected, and I just really appreciate that.”
Fave Five with Betsy
- Favorite food: Chicken pot pie
- Favorite movie: City Slickers
- Favorite sports team: Atlanta Braves
- Favorite band: Journey
- Favorite place: For many years, Rio de Janeiro—but these days, it’s wherever her kids are.