Is Medical Billing Online
Right For You?
Doing your medical billing online is one of the ways you can give yourself an edge with potential clients. By this I mean using a web based practice management system that handles both medical billing and practice management.
There are also other services that allow you to submit claims online, post payments, and send patient statements. Some carriers allow you to submit (exclusively) their claims online. This would also be considered medical billing online.
For our purposes, I’d like to discuss only the web based practice management systems because they offer the most advantages for your potential clients:
Here are some of those advantages:
Medical billing on the web allows you to share your database with the office staff. The most obvious advantage is that it eliminates redundant data entry and photocopying. The staff can enter and scan information needed for billing; including patient demographics, insurance cards, authorizations, chart notes. The office can view patient balances, view collections notes from you, etc. You, as the medical biller, can see the patient scheduler and the demographic information needed to bill claims and send patient statements.
Providers like the sense of security they get from having access to their own data.
Most web based practice management software offers a means of communication between office staff. This feature allows you, the provider, and the office staff to request information from each other.
For example, you can request clarification or confirmation from the provider about coding. The office staff could pass along requests from patients that require information.
When you use a web based practice management system, the data is backed up for you. This is a very nice feature. I could tell you LOTS of stories about lost patient data. It’s pretty ugly.
If you have a medical billing service, you are responsible
for backing up your client’s data and maintaining a copy of it offsite in the event of fire or natural disaster.
After all, your client’s livelihood is at stake. I consider this to be one of the biggest benefits.
Extra features and a wide area network for your client
Practice management systems that are online usually offer many features that the medical office can take advantage of. These are features that can help you sell your medical billing service.
They can include patient scheduler, patient recall capability, mail merge letters, scanning, patient forms, and inter-office messaging.
In addition, if your potential clients have multiple locations, they have the added benefit of a system available at all those sites. This type of system can save thousands of dollars in networking costs.
Web based systems are becoming more popular all the time for obvious reasons. I believe we will eventually see more desktop software offer this model.
However, as beneficial as the web based solution is, the cost is prohibitive for some. Part-time providers who don’t generate enough income are not good candidates because of the overhead cost.
Still, medical billing online has so many benefits, it makes sense to adopt it when you can. It's a great sales tool for adding new clients to your medical billing service.
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