7 Must-Ask Interview Questions Before Hiring Medical Billing Services
There are several key interview questions for medical billing services you want to ask before you sign an agreement. Make sure you’re including them as you consider your options in order to avoid headaches later on down the road.
Do you ever look at your practice overhead and gasp? Medical billing admin costs an average of 13 minutes per visit and $20.49. If you’re a hospital it’s worse. Admin services cost 32 minutes per patient visit and $61.54.
Third-party medical billing services are the key to fighting back. If you save even a little cash per visit the money adds up. Just multiply every patient visit by even just $5. That’s a nice chunk of change.
All that administrative burden hurts your patient care. That’s why we want to help you find the best medical billing company. To get you started, we’re bringing you the seven best interview questions for medical billing.
Let’s get started.
Let’s start with the most important question: is the company HIPAA compliant? HIPAA compliance is the make or break issue for any medical professional. No HIPPA compliance, no deal.
Though yes isn’t enough when it comes to HIPAA compliance. HIPAA compliance varies based on complex legal requirements. The company needs not only HIPAA compliance but also compliance officers to do periodic compliance checks.
Data security is also an issue. You can’t risk leaking HIPAA information because of shoddy security. Always ask about email, fax, data, and inter-personal security. Reputable companies always take security seriously.
Cost For Medical Billing Services
Aside from HIPAA, the cost is the pressing issue on everyone’s mind. Saving money on admin costs is the whole reason you’re outsourcing.
Ask how the billing service charges businesses. Do they offer options? Are there any hidden fees? Medical billing services usually offer a per charge or a flat rate plan.
Flat rate fees don’t account for volume and thus often cost more money. Flat rate only saves money for high volume practices.
On the other hand, variable rates better reflect how much money you owe the billing service. Though you should never accept rates over 8 percent per charge.
How Often Do You Report?
Medical billing services collect both customer data and important financial information about your business. They deal with insurance policies that directly affect your customers.
Always ask how often the billing service reports financial information. Most services report at least monthly, but the best services report daily. Some even allow access to their backend system. With a username and passcode, you can generate your own reports.
With billing services that don’t report financial information, you run the risk of overpaying, mishandling insurance charges and overcharging your customers.
Is Your Medical Billing Company Affiliated?
Medical billing companies are often associated with local, regional, and state regulatory bodies or other professional associations. Billing companies who join local associations show responsibility and a strong desire to cultivate a positive reputation.
Search your local area and state to see what, if any, professional associations exist. Reputable companies belong to at least one organization. Companies that participate in the associations care about current regulations and emerging industry trends.
How Often are You Staffed?
Medical practices don’t often close. Primary care doctors might take off some weekends and most holidays, but hospitals don’t close. Depending on your circumstances you could need 24/7 billing services.
The best medical billing companies have rotating staff that work holidays. They’re available, or at least on call, 24/7. Most offices don’t need constant staff thanks to software automation, but someone should always answer the phone.
Experience in Billing For Medical Offices
You need a medical billing service with experience. Unexpected issues happen every day. Companies with more experience have seen these issues and know how to handle them. Not to mention the myriad of physicians’ shorthand codes that throw off inexperienced services.
Always ask about the company’s history and the average amount of employee experience. Older companies might have an inexperienced staff. Likewise, new companies might only staff veterans.
Also, ask companies about their specializations. Try to hire billing services that have experience working with your specific healthcare industry. Some biller’s work better with hospitals, some with primary care doctors, etc.
References From Other Healthcare Practices
Any reputable company has references, both personal and project based. Always ask to see examples of previous work. The biller’s conduct with other people is very likely how they’ll handle your practice.
You can also contact practices from their previous work. Ask the practices about their opinion and whether or not they would recommend the billing service. Do this with several services to narrow down your shortlist.
Creating Your Own Interview Questions for Medical Billing
Our seven interview questions for medical billing are an excellent way to start looking for third-party billing companies. They help weed out the good companies from the bad and help you make smart hiring decisions.
However, which billing services are best for your company depends on your specific needs. Your practice is unique, and what billing help you need varies from everyone else. There is no one size fits all solution when it comes to medical billing.
Always come prepared to ask questions unique to your business. If you’re having trouble getting started, that’s where our business shines. We meticulously review medical billing services to ensure you’re using the best service for your needs.
We strive to create in-depth reviews that can answer even your most specific questions. So if you’re ready to find your practice the best third-party billing company, start reading our reviews.
And if there’s anything you can’t find, you can always contact us with suggestions. Our team is always looking for new services to review. We strive to help match you with the correct medical billing service for your needs.
Author: Mike Cynar
Mike Cynar brings buyers and sellers together by producing reviews and creating non biased webpages allowing users to share their experiences on various products and services. He and his staff write informative articles related to the medical field, legal, and other small business industries.