As deductibles and coinsurance amounts continue to increase, so too has uncollected patient financial responsibility, resulting in physician practice bad debt spiraling out of control. The AMA offers resources to help physicians manage patient payments and maximize efficiencies in the collection process.
Point-of-Care Pricing Toolkit
Collecting amounts due from patients at the time of service, or at the point of care (POC), offers numerous benefits to practices, such as reducing accounts receivable, increasing cash flow, reducing medical billing and back-end collection costs, decreasing the administrative burdens of tracking and writing off bad patient debt and managing the growing portion of practice revenue generated from patient payments. All of these factors can help a practice maintain or improve its financial viability.
- Steps Toward Providing POC Pricing and Collecting From Patients at the Time of Service (PDF, members only)
- How to Calculate the Price of Treatment at the POC (PDF, members only)
- Scripts to Help Your Practice Collect Patient Payment at the Time of Service (PDF, members only)
- Letter Template (DOC, members only) (to ask health insurers and other payers about terms and conditions of insurance contracts regarding physicians’ rights to provide POC pricing and collect payments at time of care)
- Webinar: Part 1: "Helping Patients Understand Financial Responsibility at the Time of Service"
- Webinar: Part 2: "Helping Patients Understand Financial Responsibility at the Time of Service"
Maximizing Post-visit Collections
While physicians’ offices ideally should work to receive payment from patients at the point of care, sometimes this is not possible. It is still important that practices implement an effective plan for the collection of payment after the patient has left the office. The AMA has developed the following resources to help physicians develop a successful post-visit collection process in order to maximize their practices’ financial health:
- Maximizing Patient Collections After the Time of Service (PDF, members only): This resource provides information on how practices can implement an efficient strategy for collecting payment after a patient has left the office.
- How to Select a Collection Service (PDF, members only): When a patient fails to pay for treatment in full, it results in a delinquent account. Payment from delinquent accounts is often difficult to collect and can require substantial staff time. An experienced collection service can help in this process. This resource is designed to help physicians select an appropriate collection service.
The AMA Administrative Simplification LinkedIn Group is designed to provide updates and encourage dialogue on administrative issues affecting physician practices, including automation using electronic standards and operating rules, prior authorization standardization and reform, and regulatory developments. Physicians, practice staff and other interested stakeholders are encouraged to join.