Gil C. Orenstein, BA, CBC, Alan David Kaye, MD, PhD, Charles J. Fox, MD, and Richard D. Urman, MD, MBA
The field of medical billing and collections continues to evolve along with current developments in U.S. healthcare reform. Although there has been a significant shift of payment responsibility from third-party payers to patients, many practices are not equipped to handle this change. As patients’ financial obligations increase, the physician’s ability to collect from patients will become increasingly important. Inability to collect bills receivable can adversely affect the revenue cycle of the practice. Solutions include improvement of the point-of-service collection processes, properly trained office staff, written financial policies, and the use of technology to facilitate online payments. Patients should fully understand their financial responsibilities and options available to them for payment of services rendered.