Resolutions to thrive in 2015
New year’s resolutions for your business really could boost your income in 2015. Garry Chapman suggests ten for independent practitioners to consider
Yes, with the start of 2015, it is time to make some resolutions.
But where did it all begin?
Most sources state that the practice of making moral promises at the beginning of the year dates back to the Roman times and their worship of the god Janus, who had two faces, giving him the ability to look forwards and backwards at the same time. One face would reflect on past events and the other face would look forward into the future.
Romans used the image of this deity of transitions and changes on the first month of their calendars and the name January is derived from him. In the year 153BC, the Roman senate fixed the start of the calendar new year at 1 January.
The tradition has been around for over 2,000 years, so there must be some merit in having your own New Year resolutions. And why not for your business?
Starting now, why not review self the way you operate the financial aspects of your practice? Together, these resolutions really could make a big impact on your profit line. Even if you can keep one of them over the next 12 months, it could make an amazing difference.
Here are my suggestions for you to consider including in your financial New Year’s resolutions:
Review the way your work is being billed to ensure you are compliant with the rules and regulations that get communicated on a monthly basis from the Clinical Coding and Schedule Development group (CCSD).
Ensure you review your procedure fees on a regular basis, particularly if you bill to insurance guidelines, because they are changing all the time.
See that your work is invoiced as soon as possible.
This will ensure that you have consistent cash flow and assist with your debt reduction
Make sure that your price structure/policy is clear and that your patients are made aware of it before commencing treatment, so there is no room for ambiguity when it comes to settling the bill.
Ensure that your practice has a robust process for chasing any outstanding invoices on a consistent and continual basis until they are paid in full. Otherwise you will continue to experience a high level of bad debts.
Be aware of any bad payers so that you can decide if you want to continue seeing them while they have outstanding invoices. If you don’t do this, you will end up throwing money away on a regular basis.
Ensure that you have management information on where your patients are referred from and whether they are private medically insured, UK self-pay, from embassies or overseas self the pay. Then you can make informed decisions about your practice for the future.
Make sure that you spend as much time as possible focusing on your core skill set, which is treating and looking after the patient. This will, in turn, make you more money, as you are focused on what you do best.
See that you have a robust infrastructure in place to do all of the above with a secure IT system, backed up on a daily basis, to help you achieve this. Then you will have peace of mind if the tax inspectors come calling.
If you find you cannot manage all of the above, you need to consider whether you should join thousands of other consultants who have outsourced this crucial element to a professional billing company.
Garry Chapman is managing director
at Medical Billing and Collection
- 01494 763 999
- Medical Billing & Collection
Buckinghamshire HP7 9LP
More than Just a Billing Company