If your in-house Cardiology billing and coding department is facing constant inefficiencies, and dealing with coding backlogs and if you are operating on a shoe-string budget and small staff, chances of a negative impact on your Cardiology facilities bottom line are very high.
Keep in mind that seamless medical coding has an ever increasing impact on revenue cycle management, so making improvements with coding work environment, finding practical topics for training and exploiting available technology can all positively affect total income flow at the end of the day, week, month or a year.
Here Are Some Tips Improve The Cardiology Billing And Coding For Your Facility:
Don’t Interrupt People Working Over Codes
It takes 20 to 23 minutes for a team member who once, if interrupted to get back to work with full concentration on a task. To improve time management activities, turning off email alerts on phone and desktop, reducing unimportant meetings, and blocking off time to concentrate on important projects can lessen distractions and increase the coders’ productivity. And whatever you do, please remember to refrain from putting the coders in the same room with a member of another department.
Give Tasks Related To Medical Coding And Nothing Else
If any of the individuals in the billing department are assigned other duties like appointment scheduling or assisting with patient check in, it’s time to limit their work undertakings. Let them work on what they do best. There are many advantages of performing a close review of work undertakings to determine if non-coding tasks are appropriately placed with non-billing staff, but it’s also vital to note that sometimes coders are best suited to additional tasks.
Train The Coders On EMR
Most of the time team members receive negligible training and never learn the basics that can actually make processing information easier. Train the coders within your EMR across all roles such as provider, clinical support staff, front desk and RCM to avoid mistakes. This is just to ensure that the right arm knows what the left arm is doing.
Keeping On Reviewing Coding Accuracy
A coding compliance review can bring quality issues to the front so they can be talked in a timely manner. When done with the right intention, style, and frequency, medical billing and coding audits will actually improve the overall accuracy when feedback is shared with healthcare providers and coders. Here’s a pro tip: never let the coders think, even for a moment that an audit is a negative practice. When you review codes with the end goal of professional growth, the positive benefits ripple from both directions within the revenue cycle.
Keep An Eye On The Changes
CPT updates occur annually along with Health Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) and ICD-10. It’s critical for the Cardiology coders to be well-informed and educated on all coding related updates. However, today it’s more imperative that they understand what impact elements value based care and new reporting guidelines will have on cost of patient care.
For example, Hierarchical Condition Categories (HCC) is a risk adjustment model which is there for years now, but has intensified visibility since Medicare Advantage Plans started to need risk adjustment factor (RAF) scores for medical reimbursement. Presently, it should be on the radar of every experienced coder and every insurance payer, for that matter. To understand HCC, all you need to know is the basic knowledge of Risk Adjustment (RA) and vice-versa.
In The End…
The tips mentioned above are intended as a pivotal point to transform your Cardiology billing and coding department into optimal condition, and to ensure you are prepared for many modern day challenges as well as the ups and downs that come in the healthcare industry — all this with an eye to increase your revenue cycle management.