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Here’s a question you may not have thought of in connection with the use of an electronic insurance verification system: What do you do if the patient says that he or she has a particular type of insurance, and the registrar gets a direct response saying that this person is not covered?
You might want to have an answer scripted for the registrar who finds herself in a bit of an awkward situation, suggests Sue Alden, director of registration, training, and quality assurance at The Ohio State University (OSU) Medical Center. "We’re still figuring out how to handle that," says Alden, who is directing the hospital’s implementation of the HDX electronic verification system. "We’re trying to prepare [registrars] for people who say, But I have United, I know I have United.’ What will be the directions to the registrar when they know from the system that [the patient] doesn’t have it?"
The hospital that OSU Medical Center staff have consulted with on its use of HDX "takes the approach that the customer is always right, and when the person leaves, they just go ahead and take it out of the system," she says.
It’s important to keep in mind, however, Alden adds, that "there’s always the chance that you might be wrong. Maybe there’s been a change in insurance, and the company hasn’t updated their records. We’ve had discussions, and we’re scripting out what to say."