The Affordable Care Act, which was officially implemented on January 1, 2014, provides premium discount to the Medicaid patients. Thanks to the ACA, physicians can now expect to see greater patient influx over the next few years.
As per an independent healthcare survey, the community clinics serving low income population anticipates 12-15% rise in the number of patients who will seek care in 2014. Moreover, hospitals also expect to see substantial rise in patient influx owing to the implementation of ACA. The hospitals expect to see around 400 additional patients per month.
How can this benefit your practice?
With additional patient influx, the healthcare providers will play a key role in effectively attracting, managing, and retaining the wave of patient influx. It is estimated that more than 20 million Americans will be newly enrolled in health insurance plans, and they will be looking to take advantage of their new benefits by seeking primary healthcare services. This probably means that your practice will see a lot of new-patient appointments.
This influx could be a good or bad thing; depending on how prepared you are to take this opportunity. For that, you need to begin taking some steps to prepare your staff so that you can handle additional patients without any hassle.
Listed below are a few steps that may help you get ready for the patient influx:
Prepare your staff: Additional patient influx means you and your staff will have to be ready for additional time on front-desk, scheduling appointments, documentation, maintaining billing records, etc. Moreover, your staff also needs to be well versed with Medicaid plans and payment rules for running the practice effectively. It is important that you train your staff accordingly, and hire additional staff if required, so that the patients are addressed in appropriate manner, and they don't feel uncomfortable at your practice.
Embrace new technology: Make use of new technology like; patient portals so that it is easier for your front-office staff to schedule appointments, intimate patients about new updates, and collect bill payments. Installing patient portals can prove to be very convenient and time saving for your practice. However, it is important to make sure that your patients have access to portal messages or electronic scheduling requests. In any case, you should not make your patients feel inferior if they lack access to such kind of scheduling software.
Hire additional supporting staff: With additional patient influx, you will also need additional non-physician staff members such as nurse practitioners and physician assistants to handle the bulk of patient load. Also, you should consider hiring additional billing and administrative staff to ease up on billing and administrative tasks. Moreover, since Medicaid patients have their own set of complicated issues, it is important to consider hiring specialist staff to deal with them.
Medicalbillersandcoders.com has been successfully providing medical billing services for over a decade now across all 50 US States. With a vast array of medical billing services available with MBC, our clients can easily concentrate on additional patient influx to optimize their revenue.