In the past two annual Registration Benchmark Surveys run by AccuReg, we identified the top 5 things that patient access leaders say they need in order to improve POS collections at their hospitals. Here they are, ordered based on how many respondents felt it was their greatest need:
1. A patient bill estimation tool. This one is pretty obvious. In fact, according to the HIMSS Analytics 2013 Inpatient Revenue Cycle Management Study, 36% already have a bill estimation tool and 23% are planning to purchase a new tool or replace their current tool within the next two years.
2. Enforcement of consistent staff collections. Patient access teams struggle with enforcing staff collections. We discovered that most hospitals do not have tools to quickly and easily measure and enforce pre-service and point-of-service collections. There is also a lack of standardization as to how to measure POS collections. Less than 8% of respondents in the 2013 Registration Benchmark Survey utilize standard HFMA recommended POS Collections MAP keys. This is most likely due to the lack of tools to effectively track and measure.
3. Staff Incentives. 21% of respondents in the 2013 Registration Benchmark Survey say staff incentives are what they need most in order to improve POS collections. Some facilities have already set up monetary and non-monetary rewards for POS collections performance, but there isn’t enough data yet to statistically determine their effectiveness. Anecdotally, however, it does appear that facilities that raise visibility of POS collections performance amongst staff members see an increase in POS collections.
4. Staff training and scripting. Patient access managers often find that their registrars struggle with asking for money, and need training and scripting to improve.
5. Collections policy that postpones services if the patient doesn’t pay. Many patient access leaders feel they will be more successful in POS collections if there is a policy in place that postpones services if the patient doesn’t pay. This gives them a very concrete way of enforcing payment policies.
How can AccuReg help?
The AccuReg POS Collections Suite goes further than typical patient bill estimation tools by tracking and enforcing POS collections, and educating/training registrars while they work. While most hospitals simply track the total POS dollars collected, AccuReg measures the POS dollars collected versus what should have been collected based on patient payment estimates so that you can make sure your team is collecting as much as it should. AccuReg Payment Estimation can even notify supervisors via text or email when high dollar accounts have been registered without payment. Click here and fill out the request form to receive more information.