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Revenue | Automating Billing Reports

 In chiropractic billing issues, chiropractic billing performance, Chiropractic Billing Software, chiropractic blog, chiropractic software

Where Should We Go Tonight?

Can Dr. Ben make the commitment to automate his billing reports and take control of his office finances?

Ben and Carmen were having a familiar conversation: what should we do about dinner? They had both returned home from busy days at work, both were a little frazzled and hungry and – as usual – the refrigerator was lacking in appetizing options.

“I’ve heard that the new Indian buffet is very good,” said Carmen. “But it’s downtown and it’s almost 6:30, so there might be a bit of a wait.”

Ben thought about that. “That sounds delicious and we should definitely get there at some point, but I’m too hungry for a long wait. Why don’t we just go grab some Chinese at our usual place – there’s never a wait there.”

“You know, Ben, we’re never thrilled with our meals there and we’ve tried everything on the menu,” Carmen said. “There’s a pretty good reason why there’s never a wait there.”

They looked at each other testily for a moment – hunger and a lack of accord might become a threat to their nice evening out.

Just then Jonathan came running out of the living room and hugged Ben, happy to see his father. “Daddy, you’ve got to see my new art book – I drew all of the pictures myself!”

“Of course, Jonathan, I’d love to see it,” Ben said. “Listen, Carmen, I’m going to look at Jonathan’s artwork and then we can go try that new restaurant downtown. It sounds like fun.”

He went into the living room with Jonathan and sat down on the couch with him. He wondered why he was so irritable this evening as he turned the pages of the book.

Ben’s thoughts kept returning to earlier in the week, when Luisa explained the difficulty she was having keeping track of the office finances. Too often they were surprised to learn that some patients had accounts that were past due. And between varying accounts receivable windows and some insurance companies that were dragging out the reimbursement process due to even minor errors in data entry, it was making confident budgeting impossible.

Ben pondered how difficult it was for him to keep track of crucial patient information until he put a system in place. Between his voice recorder, written notes and meticulously organized files on his computer, he felt confident in his mastery of the most important details for each patient.

But then he thought about how many areas of office management that Luisa was expected to stay abreast of: office supplies, scheduling, working with outside vendors, insurance reimbursements… her plate was truly full, even with Pam’s able assistance. And considering that third parties don’t always respond when and how you want them to, the level of complexity and the time it takes to handle each task can be multiplied exponentially.

Carmen – who had a business degree and always seemed to be several steps ahead of Ben in understanding the ins and outs of finance – and he had talked about the program that could automate many of the functions of his office and Ben had been serious about actually following through and implementing it. But there always seemed to be a crisis to attend to… trying to collect from patients who owe balances beyond a certain date, trying to figure out where long-overdue insurance reimbursements were.

Ben knew when he started his practice that it wouldn’t only be about attending to patients – he knew there would be crucial administrative work that would have to be handled by his staff.

Luisa had certainly had shown she understood the benefits of having data to inform business decisions. But customization is key when reviewing large amounts of detailed data and it didn’t seem like Luisa was tapping the full potential of the system when it came to the billing reports. Ben knew that there were reports that could be broken down in a number of different ways and could be endlessly customized so that they could stay on top of potential problems.

Well, maybe we should take some time to figure it out together, Ben thought. Without getting these reports done – and done right – we really have no idea how well our office is functioning. This sounds like something we should talk about on Monday.

But first he wanted to enjoy a nice dinner with Carmen and Jonathan. He appreciated how Carmen listening to him talk about the various issues in his office, and she often responded with some great feedback. That business degree had served both of them well over the years.

When Ben had finished looking at Jonathan’s artwork and congratulating him on being the next Rembrandt, he found Carmen in the hallway, ready to go – her purse in one hand and a small lunchbox in the other. “What’s in the lunchbox, Carmen?” Ben asked.

“Well, since you’ve agreed to my pick of restaurants, I wanted to reciprocate by packing some snacks for the drive so you won’t be starving while we wait for a table,” Carmen said with a smile. “I’ve got some fruit, cheese and crackers, and your favorite – cashews.”

Ben took Jonathan’s hand and smiled at Carmen, who never failed to make even the most hectic and frustrating day better. “We’d better get going,” he said. “Maybe we can be on the lookout for a new Chinese place on our way there.”

Both were laughing on their way out the door.

Can Dr. Ben make the commitment to automate his billing reports and take control of his office finances?

Disclaimer: For HIPAA compliance, all characters appearing in this post are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons or actual events is purely coincidental.

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