These days when most patients rely on online reviews to select the best dentist, dental clinicians should do everything to make their rating good. As the quality of care given to patients is the top focus, a lot of dental offices face trouble in managing their finances and revenue cycle. Dental care is the number one priority for their patients but failing in providing accurate out-of-pocket fees, inaccurate billing, delays in processing claims, wrong charges to patients can affect the business of dental practice. These flaws also leave a poor impression on the patients especially when the admin status of dental offices fails to justify the fee charged to the patients, which results in loss of business and poor ratings.
An efficient revenue cycle is instrumental for the success of every dental practice. Revenue cycle management is a combined term given to different processes of identifying, collecting, and managing the revenue cycle from patients based on the services provided. Staring from verifying the patient’s insurance eligibility to finally submitting the claims to get payment for healthcare services, everything comes under revenue cycle management. Now with the advancement of technology, electronic methods can help in streamlining the revenue-related process such as checking eligibility, submitting claims, and making payments. This allows the dental practice to worry less about the payments and be more indulgent in providing quality time to patient care.
Given below are some steps that can help you to improve your revenue cycle efficiency:
- Choosing the right Practice Management System (PMS) for your requirements: One of the best ways to meet your team’s needs is to choose the right PMS software that automates and manages the administrative and billing functions of the dental organization. PMS software offers the benefits of capturing patient demographics, fixing appointments, checking insurance eligibility and benefits, checking the amount needed to pay by the patient, maintaining the insurance payer’s lists, making bills, and generating reports. This software helps to handle the day-to-day operations of dental practice. While selecting the right PMS software, involve all your team members in the selection process so that they can choose the interface of PMS software that suits them best according to dental practice needs and requirements. A detailed analysis of your dental practice’s revenue cycle and workflow will give an insight into the system’s requirements. Additionally, it will help you to check the hidden opportunities of online PMS software that will enhance the efficiency of the revenue cycle’s dental practice.
- Checking the insurance eligibility online before fixing any patient’s appointment: In many cases, it happens that the dental team gets to know that the patient is not covered by any healthcare insurance or the patient is no longer covered in the network plan after a dental service was already provided to the patient. This time, dental care providers as well patients face surprise challenges to address a bill that has high charges, more than a patient can afford. This unexpected situation can be avoided if the eligibility criteria of the patient is checked before fixing any appointments. If the eligibility of the patient is checked electronically then there are fewer chances of flaws and increased collection by avoiding uncollectible revenue from patients with no insurance coverage or invalid insurance. Electronic eligibility check helps to get a response in real-time with details about active insurance of patients. By doing so, any dental practice can increase its collections and save extra time. By entering a patient’s information like a health plan, submitting eligibility request electronic and service data in PMS will check everything related to patients, like coverage, copay, coinsurance, or specific deductibles. This information is important from the perspective of the patient as well as a dental care provider.
- Minimizing Prior Authorization Burdens by using electronic transactions: Prior approvals are some strategies that are used to control costs and check that patients receive all necessary dental services. This is a cost-control measure in which dental care providers need to acquire approval from payers before delivering dental services to patients. This process takes too much time and creates a significant burden for dental care providers. If this pre-authorization is done electronically, then it makes this process easier, and prevents errors. It also saves the time and money of providers. For adopting such an advanced process, dental care providers need to use electronic prior authorization (EPA) technology to streamline their pre-approval requests.
Final words: Streamlining and automating the practice’s revenue cycle can save time and gives you a chance to provide the best possible care to the patient and in turn improves your ratings. Every such workflow converted from manual to electronic one will reduce the burden of admin staff and simplify the revenue cycle management.