ASC Billing New Year's Resolutions:
8 Goals For 2018

It's that time again: the beginning of a new year, and time to develop strategies so your ASC will attain, and possibly surpass, its financial potential. Recording your intentions and following them systematically help ensure success in your endeavors. The following resolutions can serve as a guideline for ways to improve your ASC's financial health through following better billing practices.

Resolution #1: Review and Update Fee Schedule

a) Compare fees to reimbursement rates

b) Establish equitable minimum fee

Resolution #2: Review and Update Third-Party Payer Contract Information

a) Load/update contracts in software

b) Compare reimbursement to cost for higher-ticket procedures

c) Consider renegotiation of amendment of contract, if necessary

Resolution #3: Improve Timeliness of Patient Insurance Verification

a) Goal: 7-14 days prior to the procedure (minimum three days)

b) Provide completed pre-authorization information to patient financial counselor immediately

Resolution #4: Provide More Comprehensive and Timely Patient Financial Counseling

a) Goal: phone call to patient 7-14 days prior to the procedure (minimum three days)

b) Fully explain payment is due day of procedure and what types of payment are accepted

c) Meet with patient day of procedure for collection of payment or coordination of payment arrangements

Resolution #5: Work with Providers to Provide More Timely Dictation of Procedure Notes

a) Provide quiet dictation areas in convenient locations for providers

b) Develop relationship with provider’s office staff in effort to obtain delinquent dictation

c) Post reminders about delinquent dictation in provider areas

Resolution #6: Decrease Turnaround Time from Date of Surgery to Claim Submission

a) Goal: charges posted/claims sent within 24 hours after coding

Resolution #7: Achieve Accounts Receivable (A/R) Days Comparable to Industry Standards

a) Goal: days in A/R 45 or below

b) Ways to achieve goal:

  • Post payments within 24 hours of receipt
  • Forward incorrect or non-payments to collector within 24 hours
  • Research and follow up by collector on incorrect or non-payments within 24 hours of receipt
  • Follow up on third-party payer unpaid balances within 14 days of billing date with continued regular follow-up until correct payment received
  • Send patient statements immediately upon transfer of responsibility, regularly thereafter
  • Complete refunds, write-offs, adjustments and collection agency referrals in a timely manner with management oversight

Resolution #8: Conduct Regular Audits

a) Business office coordinator/administrator should perform monthly internal audits of coding, charge posting, payment posting and collections for accuracy and timeliness

b) Share findings with appropriate staff members, and work to improve errors and/or lag time

These are some generic suggestions which will hopefully inspire you to develop more detailed and center-specific ways to increase your ASC's profitability and meet your financial goals. Happy new year!