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AMA News Room

Oct. 31, 2013

AMA Toolkits Help Physicians Incorporate New Standards That Streamline Payment

For immediate release:
Oct. 31, 2013

CHICAGO – The American Medical Association (AMA) is offering free toolkits to help physicians benefit from new federal standards that can reduce administrative hassles, cut paperwork burdens and free physicians to spend more time with patients.

The Affordable Care Act called for new rules that require health insurers to standardize business practices for electronic funds transfer (EFT) and electronic remittance advice (ERA) which could save physicians billions of dollars. The rules make it possible for physician practices to automate the time-consuming and manual process of matching medical claims with responses and payments from health insurers.

Health insurers must be in compliance with the new rules by January 1, 2014. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services estimates approximately a third of industry-wide claim payments are made electronically, and insurer reliance on electronic fund transfers is expected to increase. Medicare rules already require physicians new to the Medicare program or who update their enrollment information to be paid via EFT.

“The new rules can benefit physicians by eliminating many mundane and costly manual tasks like depositing checks, while cutting red tape,” said AMA President Ardis Dee Hoven, M.D. “This is a great opportunity for physicians to begin incorporating electronic transactions into their practice and reaping the benefits. The AMA's toolkits and resources will help guide physicians through the necessary steps.”

The AMA toolkits for electronic funds transfers and electronic remittance advice include informative sections on getting started with electronic transactions, key questions to ask vendors, guidance on information technology solutions, and an outline of the rules and standards for electronic transactions.

“A recent study by the RAND Corporation and sponsored by the AMA shows that the professional satisfaction of physicians is affected by the burdens of overlapping rules and regulations,” said Dr. Hoven. “The new toolkits are part of the AMA’s ongoing commitment to help physicians with resources that enhance professional satisfaction and practice sustainability – a key pillar in the AMA's five-year strategic plan.”

To learn more about how the AMA is helping physicians generate substantial savings using electronic transactions, please visit our website at www.ama-assn.org/go/simplify for information on all the AMA’s administrative simplification resources.

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Contact:

Robert J. Mills
American Medical Association
(312) 464-5970

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