Patient access has always lacked benchmarking data and key performance indicators focused on the front end of the revenue cycle, but this is changing. Departments are using registration metrics to set productivity expectations, identifying how many full-time employees are needed in registration areas, and determining the hourly cost of a registration.
Patient complaints and claims denials stemmed from discrepancies between their preferred and legal names at Ochsner Health System. To address this, a separate field was created for the patient’s preferred name, staff and clinicians know how patients want to be addressed, and the correct name goes on the claim without disturbing the integrity of the medical record.
Increasingly, payers require patients to try and fail “first-line” treatments before payers approve more costly treatments. Include supporting articles from the literature supporting off-label use, and ask physicians to supply statements on why the first-line therapy is not appropriate.
Some payers are now outsourcing the authorization process to third-party vendors for high-tech radiology, infusion, or radiation oncology, which further complicates an already-difficult task for patient access.
Password security for electronic protected health information is a fundamental part of any HIPAA compliance program, but there is no one right way. HIPAA allows a great deal of choice in how to secure data with passwords, but one must choose carefully to ensure the information is protected from both casual snooping and sophisticated hacking.
Photography in healthcare settings is difficult to control but could lead to HIPAA violations if not monitored. How much one should try to control people taking pictures and video can be difficult to determine.