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Medical Billing Services Up Close: A Case Study

Outsourced medical billing services have driven significant cost savings for thousands of medical practices nationwide. How do they do it? Bill collection is just the tip of the iceberg. A closer look at a typical medical billing scenario reveals the breadth of services available through todays medical billing contractor.

Medical billing services have the potential to boost a medical clinics revenue by as much as thirty percent. An aggressive collections service alone cant account for such dramatic results. The most effective billing service relationships involve a comprehensive overhaul of the revenue management cycle. Heres a look at how one medical clinic used a billing service to grow its revenue--and save forty percent in operating costs along the way.

Surgical Associates of Texas: A Case Study

Surgical Associates of Texas, a Houston-based cardiovascular surgery practice, turned to an external billing service to address a persistent downward trend in revenue. At the root of the problem was an outdated practice management system, including a manual billing process prone to error and administrative lag.

Committed to forging a new path, Surgical Associates contracted with a comprehensive medical billing service solution. The service took a dual-pronged approach to the problem, applying both administrative expertise and technological resources to streamline the practices billing system.

  • Administrative efficiency. A dedicated billing manager introduced increased efficiency and accuracy into the billing process. Together with a team of billing service experts, the manager reorganized and trained Surgical Associates in-house administrative department. SAT administrator Bill Taylor saw long-tenured colleagues "redeployed in roles that helped them increase their impact and contribute to overall practice profitability."
  • Best Practices. Among the most profound benefits of contracting with an external service provider was access to billing industry best practices. The service provider boasts "broadened access to a knowledge base regarding claims submission beyond a small group of employees." By contracting with an industry veteran, SAT was able to take advantage of the perspective and expertise born of a broad client base.
  • Medical Billing Technology. Web-based medical billing service technology offers the necessary infrastructure for a reliable and timely billing system. The computer system features 24/7 access to practice information and claim status in real time, via an online dashboard. Meanwhile, administrative error is a thing of the past--an intelligent claims engine reviews claims forms and corrects billing errors "down to the line item." Taylor comments: "Submitting clean claims facilitates prompt and correct payment by payors."

Ultimately, SAT saw a significant increase in practice income. The increased revenue is a direct effect of its streamlined billing system. Claims rejections are down, time to payment is up, and accordingly, the clinic is enjoying a healthy rate of return on its accounts receivable.

It can take a leap of faith to contract medical billing services to an outside provider. Despite the dramatic success of outsourced billing, only seventeen percent of the industry makes use of this valuable asset. But with unrivalled expertise and state-of-the-art technology backing them, billing services offer a value proposition few clinics can afford to ignore.


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