RMK HOLDINGS INC.
How to Boost Patient Experience to Improve The Revenue Cycle
Updated: Dec 8, 2022
Patient experience and revenue cycle continue to gain adoption of their effect upon each other. When trying to improve revenue cycle, most medical practices look towards strategies to reduce claim denials, increase collections, and eliminate patient identity errors. Now, practices are realizing that providing an excellent patient experience can improve the revenue cycle.
During pre-registration, intake and payment processes, patients experience frustrations that can negatively affect the revenue cycle. Hence, to improve your revenue cycle, you have to remove these frustrations and make it easier for patients to use your medical practice for their health needs.
One key way to provide excellent service that exceeds patient expectations is to use digital tools. Digital tools can help enhance your services and increase patient satisfaction. In this post, you’ll learn how to use them to boost patient experience and improve your revenue cycle.
4 Digital Tools To Boost Patient Experience & Improve Revenue Cycle
Outlined below are digital tools that can help provide your patients with the best experience and improve your practice’s revenue cycle.
1. Price Transparency Tools
When people shop for items or book services, they often know how much it would cost them. Unfortunately, this doesn’t apply in healthcare. Accurately estimating health care costs upfront can be tricky.
There are several factors that complicate giving a definite bill upfront. Emergency procedures may be required later on. Patients’ lack or type of insurance also comes into play. However, informing patients about their payment options will make it easier for them to plan and pay for care.
With price transparency tools, you can provide patients with all the information they need about the possible cost of care before they proceed to receive your services. These digital tools can help patients understand insurance benefits and out-of-pocket costs, as well as compare costs.
Although it will also make them aware of care alternatives, it doesn’t mean that you will lose patients. The fact that you’re transparent will enable patients to build trust and loyalty. Also, it would help guarantee payment collection as patients would opt for services when they have a definitive plan in place to pay for the service rather than receiving an unexpected bill.
2. Self-Service Options
Some patients don’t have to visit your practice every time to receive the services they need. And, some of the processes involved in providing care, which cause patients to spend too much time during a visit, can be done by the patients on their own.
Self-service options help save both you and your patients’ time. For instance, patients can complete health care administrative tasks before visiting your practice. Things such as providing essential information, filling insurance forms, and scheduling appointments can be done online.
Telemedicine services for specialist consultation, chronic condition follow-up, and medication management are also self-service options. Overall, self-service digital tools enable your practice to get accurate and complete data about the patient, as well as provide support to patients.
And, telemedicine options have gained a substantial boost during the pandemic with many major insurers approving coverage.
3. Convenient Payment Method
Not all patients who haven’t paid their medical bills don’t have the money. Some patients can afford to pay, but don’t have the time to make the payment. A common response we've heard is: I was waiting for someone to call me or I'm glad you called because I forgot about this bill. An inconvenient payment method discourages patients from paying their medical bills on time.
Of course, the ability to pay online is one of the most convenient methods to offer. But, beyond that, some patients want to pay out-of-pocket immediately after they receive medical care. They don’t want to wait for the bill to be sent.
So, in addition to providing online payment options, make payment options available at different points when providing care. You can make it possible for patients to make payments just before or right after delivering service. These convenient payment methods will reduce billing and collection costs and increase collection rate.
4. Care Coordination Tools
Most times, physicians need patients to receive the services of other healthcare professionals to provide care. For instance, patients may need lab tests or scans before their physician can diagnose and treat them.
Adding digital tools that enable your practice to order and schedule additional services electronically on behalf of patients can help coordinate care, ensure additional care is completed and reduce duplication errors while documenting care across all channels.
With this, physicians can also determine when to schedule follow-up visits to review results and provide more treatment as required. Also, it helps patients to be clear on the next steps in their care journey and builds more confidence in them about your practice.
Providing patient-focused processes is a vital way to improve your revenue cycle. And, according to an industry survey, the five pillars of healthcare experience that patients value most include convenience, quality, support, personalization and communication. All of these can be provided using digital tools with a human touch, as touched upon in this post.