Ask Caryl: Delinquent Physician Operative Report Dictation

Q: My ASC has a surgeon who is always late on dictating operative reports. Do you have any suggestions how I can demonstrate to this surgeon that this is affecting our profit margin?

Caryl Serbin: Run a "days in accounts receivable" report for the chronically delinquent offender alone. Run the same report for the same time frame for all other providers, excluding the offender. Compare the two reports to determine if delinquencies carry over from month to month. If so, you can demonstrate the gross revenue lost from the closed month due to cases not coded awaiting operative notes.

Also, check your denial logs. You will often find that dictation completed more than one week after the procedure creates more denials for incompatible codes and timely filing. Discrepancies such as missing or inaccurate procedures performed are often found when compared to nursing intraoperative notes. Missing procedures in operative note dictation results in fewer codes which, in turn, can leave revenue on the table in the form of uncharged procedures.

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