Collections increased 19%, which was an additional $3.6 million, in 2014 compared to the previous year, and payment plans increased by 27%, which was an additional $2.8 million, after patient access leaders at Novant Health in Winston-Salem, NC, began giving price estimate letters to surgical patients prior to service.
Seattle-based Virginia Mason Health System recently implemented a Patient Cost Estimator service, available via phone, online, or in person, to anyone inquiring about scheduled or planned inpatient and outpatient medical procedures.
If a procedure ends up being slightly different than it was expected to be when a price estimate was provided to a patient, this difference can cause major problems for patient access, the patient, and the hospital.
Several years ago, Shelita Russ, CHAM, director of patient access services at New Orleans-based Ochsner Baptist Medical Center and Ochsner Medical Center-Kenner (LA), held a pizza party to celebrate a departmental achievement: Her team had met its point-of-service collection goals for the quarter.
Registrars who work night shifts in the emergency department and labor and delivery registration areas can’t attend 2 p.m. staff meetings at New Orleans-based Ochsner Baptist Medical Center and Ochsner Medical Center-Kenner. So supervisors give the night shift staff members their own meeting at 10:30 p.m. or 6:30 a.m.
More than 60,000 pieces of paper each month no longer need to be printed, copied, and stored in offsite record storage locations, due to electronic signatures being implemented in registration areas at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.
Patient identification has been called “paramount” to the formation of an interoperable Learning Health System (LHS). So says the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) and the Association of Medical Directors of Information Systems (AMDIS).