The HITECH Act has stimulated the adoption of Electronic Health Records (EHR) and Health Information Exchange (HIE) solutions. Additionally, the delays in the ICD-10 compliance deadline has opened a window for healthcare providers to assess their existing Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) platforms.
A recent study by Capsite (July, 2012) surveyed nearly 400 participants, such as CEOs, CFOs and IT directors, representing 360 U.S. hospital organizations. The findings indicated a major trend, that 21% of these providers are planning on replacing existing RCM systems while 58% are planning upgrades to existing systems.
Clinical systems like EHRs, have taken priority over updating revenue cycle management solutions and processes over the last three or four years. This creates an opportunity in the marketplace for vendors, billers and financial institutions with medical lockbox offerings to gain customers in this space.
Efficient On-Boarding is a Necessity
New, more efficient revenue cycle management solutions that streamline both paper-based and electronic payments more effectively provide incremental value to the lockbox process, ultimately improving the revenue cycle for healthcare providers. Back-end RCM processes in particular will see reductions in data entry, reconciliation, management oversight, customer errors and time in working denials. These significant improvements will drive vendor changes.
However, adoption of a system/platform will be contingent upon the vendor’s methodology to on-board providers and billers efficiently. Gone are the days where a conversion could take six months to a year. Today’s system changes need to be done in a matter of one to three months. Fortunately technology vendors who have migrated to open systems with easy file exchange, tightly controlled workflows and flexible posting file capabilities can meet the needs of this dynamic marketplace.
In conclusion, there is money to be saved in RCM with the right implementation. Choose vendors which can adapt to changes, because there is one thing certain in the healthcare field; nearly everything is changing in the next few years.