Mobile charge capture technology can ease frustration brought about by lost charges, payment delays, data entry errors, and inaccurate billing information. Mobile charge application technology enables you to improve patient care, increase revenue and loser billing administration costs.
As orthopedic surgeons our practice is centered on patient care for fractures, arthritis, and sports medicine. A large part of our practice takes place in the hospital where we care for injured patients, be it during the day, night or on weekends. While it was obvious we were very good at taking care of our patients, it was difficult for us to find time to write down procedure and diagnosis codes and then get them to our office billing staff. The mobile charge capture application on our smart phones proved the solution to this problem. We use this technology to follow our patient list daily, code our cases and consults, and transmit daily logs to the billing staff in real time.
Thoughts about ROI
Mobile charge capture gives you compelling return on investment by:
- Reducing lost charges,
- Increasing revenue,
- Expediting the billing process,
- Expediting payer payment,
- Reducing denial processing costs,
- Reducing “no authorization” write-offs,
- Increasing caregiver adoption,
- Increasing administrative staff efficiency,
- Decreasing administrative costs,
- Streamlining compliance examinations, and
- Improving rounding efficiency
Our practice uses maxRVU, a product by gingerCube Inc. It lets us input our patients’ information, share rounding notes, helps code surgeries and consults with CPT and ICD codes, and ensures that we remain Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)- compliant.
We started using the product in March of 2011, and saw good results right away. About 3 months ago, we decided to review what difference the mobile charge capture made on our bottom lines. Anecdotally, we know our billers are no longer waiting for us to submit charges for them to bill nor pressuring us for clarification of codes, and we are no longer losing billing sheets in our cars or finding our kids using them to draw pictures.
The revenue cycle is smoother too. We-the physicians-do the coding without hesitation and in full compliance with HIPAA and other regulations. No longer does illegible handwriting gum up the works. We sensed that the mobile phone capture app increased our practices’ profitability, but what would the cold, hard numbers reveal?
In the spirit of research, limiting confounding variables, and trying to draw accurate conclusions, we decided to study three codes that are commonly used by all doctors treating hospital patients regardless of specialty: 99223-initial hospital care; 99232-subsequent hospital care; and 99238-hospital discharge. We looked at the number of times these codes were used before we adopted maxRVU and while using the product.
We also looked at the charges resulting from the use of these codes and the collections from these codes.
The data show a significant increase in consults and charges, which can be seen from the accompanying graphs.
We conclude that this technology helped increase our captured charges by about 13%, which is significant. In this environment of diminishing reimbursement, you should capture and charge for all of the work that you do. With a mobile charge capture application we are able to collect more money.
This study did not take into consideration how this application helped our practice improve its financial health in ways that are not so easily calculated. We proved that with this application, we were able to capture charges in a timely fashion with no loss of chargeable visits. By getting the charges to our biller in real time, we sped up the billing process. The technology helps our billers to be more efficient, which avoids overtime and enhances consistent delivery of charges and revenue. There is no loss of revenue due to late billing or time filing issues. We believe that no physician should be without a good mobile charge capture application.
Other mobile charge capture resources
There are many product offerings for physicians when it comes to mobile charge capture software. Here are some of the products listed through the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS).
Please note, this listing is not meant to be comprehensive, nor does it serve as an evaluation or endorsement of the mobile charge capture device. Most management experts would advise you to conduct a thorough review of your practice needs and assess how the software and/or applications fit with your expectations.
ADP Advanced MD, Inc.:advancedmd.com
Varian Medical Systems:www.varian.com
Advanced Data Systems:adsc.com
Omnimd EHR & Practice Management: omnimd.com
MedSym, Inc.: www.medsymsolutions.com
Etransmedia Technology, Inc.:etransmedia.com
Medical Office Online, Inc.:medicalofficeonline.com.