The holiday decorations may be up in your office, but if your end-of-year collections are off, you may not feel much like celebrating. Now’s the time to clean up your books and your patient accounts. And you’ve got a secret weapon in your office perfectly poised to get this done: your CA.
If you have more than one assistant, it’s important that you assign collections to the one who’s the most comfortable talking to patients about money. If your only available CA struggles with having financial conversations, here’s some advice and mini-trainings that will help:
Empower Your CA
Giving your CA complete responsibility over this is crucial. A CA who feels tentative or as if she is speaking “for” you will come across that way to patients. Entrust your CA with the authority to “own” this task. You can support him or her from the exam room when you tell patients that he or she is the one handling their accounts.
Give Your CA the Big Picture
Assign your CA the important task of going through all of your patients’ payment histories, and identifying those accounts that are out of alignment with office payment policy. Your CA can’t function in this role with optimal effectiveness if he or she doesn’t have a grasp on the overall financial picture of your billing and collections.
Allow Your CA to Propose Payment Plans
You’re the boss, so of course, you have final veto power. But when you let your CA present you with ideas for different payment plans, and to propose when and how accounts should be turned over to a collections agency or “forgiven” on a certain date, you give him or her the confidence that will carry over to approaching patients from a grounded place.
Let Your CA Collect Overdue Payments
This isn’t about making your CA the bad cop so you can play good cop. This is about showing both the CA and patients that “this is how we do things here.” There’s no need for aggression or heavy-handed tactics. In fact, truly empowering your CA is likely to result in kinder, gentler interactions between CA and patient, because he or she will no longer feel that they have no actual authority.
Because you’re a ChiroHealthUSA provider, you’re likely to have far fewer collections issues than practices still struggling with confusing fee schedules and patients who flee or stop paying when their insurance benefits run out. Having one fee for every patient and then discounting that fee for those patients who choose to participate in ChiroHealthUSA, you are increasing the likelihood that lower bills will be easier to collect. We offer you support in many areas of your practice, including lingering ICD-10 questions, compliance, documentation, staff training and scripting, marketing support and more. Check out our information-packed short videos on a variety of subjects critical to the health of your practice.