Outsourcing medical billing tasks to a professional medical billing company is a great way for health care providers to ensure proper reimbursement and devote more time to patient care. However, to choose the right medical billing company, you need to compare service providers. Here are some important points that can help you distinguish between good and bad medical billing companies.
- Comprehensive Suite of Medical Billing Services: The right firm would provide end-to-end medical coding and billing services. This would include everything from receiving patient schedules, entering demographic information, insurance verification including pre-authorization services where necessary, accurate medical coding with the latest ICD-9 and CPT codes, and submission of claims in keeping with industry and insurer regulations. Once claim forms are properly filled out and submitted accompanied by supporting documentation, a reliable medical billing company will implement measures to ensure maximum reimbursement. Their professional AR management practices would also include efficient follow-up to collect payments from insurers as well as patients. Payment posting is also provided.
- Experience: The billing company of your choice should have considerable experience and a good reputation. It is equally important that the medical billers and coding staff are experienced in providing billing services for your specific medical specialty.
- Professional Team on Board: Billing procedures will vary according to the medical specialty. For example, pathology medical coding and billing is different from cardiology medical billing and coding because codes are different. A good medical billing company would have a team of expert AAPC-certified medical coders and billing specialists on board. They would be proficient in various relevant areas: CPT, ICD and HCPCS Coding, insurance claims and billing, appeals and denials, fraud and abuse, HIPAA Compliance and reimbursement issues. Only this can ensure efficient billing and coding practices.
- Technology Utilization: A good billing company will have automated billing procedures and would be able to work on various kinds of advanced medical billing software. The medical billing service should also be able to integrate with the physician’s EHR. Proper procedures should also be in place to utilize all the advantage that advanced software offers. It will have measures in place to ensure data security (HIPAA compliance is a must), have a proper strategy for the sharing of super bills and claims and backup and disaster recovery procedures.
- Customer Service and communication: Seamless communication between the healthcare provider and billing company is essential for proper billing. Good billing companies will offer round-the-clock technical and customer support.
- Affordability: A good billing company would not have any startup fees or any hidden charges and would offer services at affordable costs. In fact, you could consider a medical billing company that saves you at least 30-40% on your operational costs as a good one.
- Reference check: Make sure to conduct a reference check. An ideal company can provide you with a list of current and past clients. From these references you can find out more about the quality of service offered, turnaround time and customer support services.