Doctors, physicians, and clinics fall into the category of essential services that all people need to survive. However, most clinics out there are private practices and require a steady and growing profit to sustain themselves and continue serving their community. That’s why you need to treat your clinic the way you would any other business—by locating any lost revenue and finding ways to earn more, grow, and provide a higher quality of care to your patients.
Clinics and private practices lose potential income in a myriad of ways that are usually treatable. Your first step to earning more is identifying the mistakes you or your staff are making so you can find suitable solutions. To run a diagnostic on your clinic, consider the following common mistakes that hurt revenue in the healthcare industry.
An Inconvenient Payment Process
It’s no secret that the healthcare industry has one of the most complicated billing and payment processes. That’s because it involves multiple parties, including your patients’ insurance providers. Also, it’s easy for the most experienced medical billing employee to make mistakes that cost you a small fortune or leave your patient unsatisfied.
Fortunately, there are multiple ways you can make your payment process easier for your staff and your patients. For example, you can offer online billing and payment processing and automate your clinic’s end of the process using medical billing software.
Failure to Properly Manage Credit Balances
Whether insured or not, most patients make payments using a credit card that sometimes requires a clean credit balance. If a patient misses too many payments, their insurance company can decline their claim.
One way to make sure the numbers run smoothly is by pulling patient credit reports for healthcare purposes and checking whether they’re eligible for the services you’re offering with their insurance provider. You can use your EHR software to manage the records by automating the whole process, ensuring your staff never undercharges or forgets deadlines.
Lack of Payment Options
People of all demographics and backgrounds need healthcare services. To meet their needs, you have to accept payment options that suit any patient’s financial situation. Payment flexibility, such as offering monthly payments to third-party loan services, can help patients tackle large, unexpected bills. Offering multiple payment options makes sure the billing process runs smoothly for you and your patients and minimizes mishaps.
Lack of Accountability
Sometimes, you lose revenue due to patients missing payments, not showing up for appointments, or canceling them on short notice. To make sure those costs don’t add up, you can implement “consequences” for habits that harm your business. For example, you can charge increased interest for late payments or enforce cancellation and last-minute appointment rescheduling fees.
Neglecting New Patient Potential
Even though the private healthcare sector relies on returning patients, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t bring in new clients and entice them to stay. Your clinic is a business, and you need to market it as such. Set aside a budget for digital marketing and start by creating a solid online presence by blogging, posting regularly on social media, and making YouTube videos. You can also rely on traditional marketing by utilizing TV, radio, and newspaper ads.
Failure to Adapt
Technology is rapidly evolving, and you need to keep up with it. Patients nowadays expect all services to be digital to some extent; that includes patient records, diagnosis, and prescriptions. Also, telehealth calls have become imperative during the last few months due to COVID-19 and social distancing regulations. Even after the pandemic subsides, many patients will likely still have an interest in these remote services.
Better Business for Better Service
Your business is unique, even if it shares some qualities and struggles with other establishments in the same industry. Develop a critical way of thinking and always analyze your practice to grow and serve patients better. Also, note that your struggles and goals can change over time, so remain flexible and change your business model accordingly.