Modern Healthcare publishes “Hospitals must prepare for price transparency, experts say,” featuring AccuReg CEO Paul Shorrosh and AccuReg customer Deborah Vancleave

The article explains that although more court fights lie ahead, industry experts say hospitals shouldn’t delay developing a strategy for sharing negotiated insurance rates with the public.

In the article, AccuReg CEO Paul Shorrosh said hospitals could use the opportunity to increase their pre-service and point-of-service cash collections by allowing patients to self-estimate and self-pay using credit cards or other payment methods. Providers could roll that into a financial assistance system to automatically let patients know if they qualify for discounts, charity care, loan programs or payment plans. That could help hospitals save money on collections costs.

It might also allow health systems to engage and build trust. “That’s really being supportive and helpful to the patient,” Shorrosh said. “No patient likes being chased by collections.”

A federal judge last week ruled CMS could mandate hospitals to disclose their negotiated rates because it weighed the concerns of providers and payers, evaluated the evidence and explained its decision. The American Hospital Association plans to appeal the case, but with the rule taking hold in five months, hospitals can ill afford to rely on the courts to come to the rescue.

“The key for hospitals is to find the right business partner because there have been so many broken promises,” said Deborah Vancleave, vice president of revenue cycle for the Mosaic Life Care system, based in St. Joseph, Mo.

She further explains that “The problem is sometimes we don’t have historical data. Hospitals will have to get better at capturing and using data and continually update their pricing indexes.”

Now that the deadline is just around the corner, all but the largest health systems will likely need to partner with a reliable price transparency vendor because they don’t have the time or resources to develop and test a solution.

Read the entire story in Modern Healthcare.

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