When is it time to outsource your medical billing?
Even though you...
Managing your doctor’s practice is no less involved than running any small business where you have to take care of everything yourself.
Even though you have your administrative staff on hand to help, taking care of all the other endless tasks involved in operating a doctor's office can consume all your spare time if you're not careful.
The outcome you ultimately want is to be able to balance your personal life with your work life, while delivering superior care and service to those who motivated you to become a doctor in the first place—your customers.
First and foremost in your practice has to be medical billing.
RELATED TOPIC: Is your medical accounting process healthy?
In order to maintain your financial viability, you need to make sure that medical services are being coded correctly, and in a timely manner.
Otherwise, your cash flow will get bottle-necked in the red tape on the insurer's end, and you'll be in financial trouble.
If you're already seeing signs of cash flow stoppages, it may be time to rethink your medical billing process.
One common solution for medical billing problems is to outsource this complex task to third-party experts.
As the following article looks at, despite what you may have heard regarding 3 myths about outsourcing your medical billing, companies like these are accustomed to taking on everything from micro offices to multi-practice facilities.
Here are some signs that it may be time to outsource your medical billing:
Your staff is making excuses
You may have the friendliest, most hardworking medical staff in the area.
But when their inbox is overflowing with bills, and you ask about it, and they start making excuses, watch out.
Backed up accounts receivables spell trouble for your practice's cash flow.
Every piece of paper you see sitting on a desk that should be filed away as "pending payment" represents money that's not going into your bank account within the next 30 days.
RELATED TOPIC: 4 ways CEOs can save money while running a hospital
If your staff has started making excuses about the workload, or about not having time to process bills, that's your cue to start making phone calls about possibly outsourcing your medical billing.
You're starting to grow
If your practice is growing, you'll need all hands on deck in the administrative department. This is the perfect time to outsource your medical billing, and your staff will thank you for it.
A growing practice will fail miserably if you don't provide stellar service to new customers.
In this age of online reputations, you need every review from a new customer to be positive. It won't be if your receptionist is pulling double duty as a medical coder.
You can't afford the mistakes
Medical billing is complicated.
When your existing staff has to try to input details and medical codes into the system at your office in the midst of ringing telephones and patients desperate for attention, it's inevitable that mistakes will happen. You can't blame them.
However, mistakes are costly in terms of unapproved claims and the extra time it takes to figure out the error and resubmit. These mistakes will prove costly and you'll be the one to pay.
Pride of practice is one thing, but being foolhardy and thinking you and your admin staff can do it all is another.
You'll find that once you make the smart decision to outsource your medical billing, your practice will grow exponentially and organically.
About the author: Kate Supino writes extensively about best business practices.
Bachem turns 50 - a timeline
Bachem, a supplier to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies worldwide, is celebrating its 50th anniversary this month. We take a look at the Swiss company's history.
1971 - beginnings
Bachem is founded by entrepreneur Peter Grogg in Liestal, a small town near Basel in Switzerland. Grogg started the firm with just two employees, and with a focus on peptide synthesis - peptides are composed of amino acids that have a variety of functions treating health conditions such as cancer and diabetes.
1977 - 1981 - early growth
Bachem moves its headquarters to the Swiss town of Bubendorf, with eight employees. In 1978 the company produces peptides for use in medicines for the first time. In 1981 production capacity triples and the workforce grows to 150.
1987 - 1996 - worldwide expansion
The company expands into the US with Bachem Bioscience, Inc. in Philadelphia. To strengthen its presence in Europe, Bachem opens sales and marketing centres in Germany in 1988.
Further sales centres open in France in 1993. By 1995 the company employs 190 people. In 1996 it acquires the second largest manufacturer of peptides in the world and forms Bachem California with a site in Torrance.
1998 - 2003 - Bachem goes public
Bachem company goes public and lists shares on the Swiss Stock Exchange. Further acquisitions include Peninsula Laboratories, Inc, based in California, and Sochinaz SA, a Swiss-based manufacturer of active pharmaceutical ingredients. By 2001, the company has 500 employees and sales reach 141 million CHF.
In 2003 the organisation is given a new legal holding structure to support its continued growth, which remains in place to this day.
2007 - 2013 - acquisitions
Bachem acquires a brand by Merck Biosciences for ready-to-use clinical trial materials and related services.
In 2013, together with GlyTech, Inc. Bachem announces the development of a new amino acid that can help to treat multiple sclerosis, with a world market of more than $4 billion.
In 2015 it acquires the American Peptide Company (APC), which becomes integrated into Bachem Americas.
2016 - 2019 - a global leader
In 2016 the group opens a new building dedicated to R&D projects and small series production in Bubendorf. With a total of 1,022 employees, the workforce exceeds the 1,000 mark for the first time in the company’s history. Sales are over the 200 million mark for the first time at 236.5 million CHF.
Bachem expands into Asia with the establishment of a new company in Tokyo called Bachem Japan K.K.
By 2019 Bachem has a growing oligonucleotide portfolio - these are DNA molecules used in genetic testing, research, and forensics. It is hoped this will become a significant product range in the future.
2020 - COVID-19
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Bachem secures its supply of active ingredients, and even increases it in critical areas. Sales exceed the 400 million Swiss franc mark for the first time, and 272 new employees are hired.
2021 - a milestone anniversary
Bachem celebrates its 50th anniversary and position as a global leader in the manufacture of peptides. While it remains headquartered in Bubendorf, the company employs 1,500 people at six locations worldwide. In the next five years there are plans to continue expanding.
Commemorating the company's anniversary, Kuno Sommer, Chairman of the Board of Directors, said: "Bachem's exceptional success story from a small laboratory to a global market leader is closely linked to Peter Grogg's values, and has been shaped by innovation, consistent quality and cost awareness, as well as by entrepreneurial vision."