A 2022 article from debt.org revealed that 20 percent of American households have medical debt, meaning that one in five people have unpaid medical invoices. Medical practices are further decreasing their profits by devoting time, money, and labor to get these invoices paid. Here are a few tips that may help you get these invoices paid quickly and efficiently.
Revise Your Reminder Strategies
Unfortunately, most patients have an “out of sight, out of mind” mentality with their medical bills. An efficient reminder strategy can help remind patients about their invoices and help them stay on track to pay off their debt. Most medical practices rely on mail and email for these reminders, but these may not be the most efficient (or affordable) options.
The nonprofit consumer activism company, Consumer Action, found that 74 percent of Americans prefer to receive their medical bills on paper. Unfortunately, mailing reminders can be expensive to maintain, requiring money for paper, envelopes, and printing and the cost of paying personnel to stuff, seal, and deliver the postage to the post office. Factor in the increasing cost of postage, and you’re throwing away good money.
Email reminders are also popular among medical practices, but what you gain in cost-savings, you lose in impact. According to the tech trade publication, Earthweb, most people receive over 100 emails a day, but they only open 20 to 40 percent of those emails. You also run the risk of having your emails lost forever in spam or junk folders.
With these complications in mind, sometimes it’s easier to call the patient — but even that can be laborious, especially when manually dialing each number. A better option is to invest in a contact center solution like GoContact, which enables automated dialing directly from your customer database. Plus, GoContact offers predictive dialing, which means the call only connects once it is answered, allowing you to avoid “voicemail jail” while improving the chance of collecting a payment.
Proactively Call Patients About Payment Plans
It’s estimated that more than half (58 percent) of all accounts sent to collections are related to medical expenses. Even if your medical practice has an effective invoicing and reminder strategy, the truth is that many patients can’t afford to pay. Instead of arranging payment or discussing payment options, patients push bills aside and wait for the doctor’s office to call to collect the debt.
A contact center solution like GoContact allows your medical billing staff to make personalized calls and use customized scripts to help patients build a payment plan to fit their needs. Your agents can educate patients on their options and help them avoid collections, bringing previously lost revenue back into the practice while improving patient satisfaction.
Revamp Your Communications and Billing Methods with a Contact Center Solution
Whether patients forget to pay their invoices or are unable to pay them, the fact is that medical debt in the U.S. is growing. Nearly one in five adults (22 percent) with medical debt owe between $2,001 and $5,000, and your practice is losing significant revenue from these unpaid invoices. Investing in a feature-rich contact center solution can help you recoup that revenue.
Contact us to learn how your medical practice can improve patient communications and billing operations with GoContact.