Open Enrollment 

October is just around the corner.  Cool fall breezes, football games and hot cocoa are on their way, along with Open Enrollment time for many plans (especially government plans such as Medicare). 

Why is Open Enrollment important?  For patients, it provides an opportunity to exercise any changes they would like to make in their coverage.  There may be a more affordable plan, or one with better benefits which more appropriately suits the patients’ needs, as well as adding or dropping plans offered through employers.   

For a provider, open enrollment is important as an opportunity to interact with patients.  Many providers find themselves in the situation of educating members.  It’s uncomfortable for some providers, but it’s a great way to educate members about proper utilization, access of care, and understanding general benefits.  The members value the relationship with their healthcare professionals and they trust what you think.  This puts you in a powerful (and sometimes dangerous) position to offer advice about health plans. 

It’s easy to say “our office doesn’t like Healthcare Plan X, so don’t choose that one.”  Avoid those types of positions, and rather take a few minutes to engage the patients about their personal needs.  From the patient’s perspective, you should be in every plan that comes along, and helping them understand those business decisions on your part can help them make better decisions on theirs by considering more than just the network. 

Educate your front desk to know the difference between the types of healthcare plans, and how to properly collect copayments or information from patients while they’re standing at the desk at check-in or check-out.  This extra step will save you a lot of frustration later on.  Utilize any tools your EMR may provide to help you verify benefits prior to service, so you can ensure the patient has coverage with the plan for which the card was provided. 

Consider engaging with plans performing open enrollment and invite them into your space to engage with and educate patients with you.   You can also ask them for information about their plans which you could hand out as educational tools to members.  Each of these interactions opens the conversation with your patients about their care, and how you can participate in improving their health.   

If you are using a billing service, that service may have additional tools or services they can offer to help as well.  Open Enrollment for many members means they will change plans in January.  Being prepared for those changes by checking benefits regularly (we recommend a minimum of every 60 days) helps your practice stay on top of those changes and minimize issues with carrier payments. 

Questions?  Reach out to Team CPR at (501) 223-2776 for information on how we can help. 

Welcome from the President 

CPR has always been about collaborating with our clients and building solutions which work the best in the client’s individual situation.    When I started the company in 2010, my primary goals were to have relationships with our clients which went beyond just a client/vendor relationship, and to identify the things which were preventing clinics from being able to function as efficiently as they could.  Along with the vendor/client relationship, I wanted to recognize the efforts of our employees and provide a flexible work environment which helped them feel valuable and engaged. 

We are launching several things in keeping with both of those missions and enhancing the services we provide.  We have grown beyond just the medical billing company I started in 2010.  We also provide PHO management, clinic management and consulting, credentialing, contracting, and our two newest ventures:  ad hoc project services, and non-medical billing (for professionals such as contractors, electricians, or lawn care companies). 

We have recently refreshed our look and feel on the website, updated our logo and our domain name, and have implemented several behind-the-scenes changes to support you in your endeavors by helping our staff to be as efficient and responsive as possible to your needs.  We have enhanced our client services staff, and are working on engagement plans for satisfaction surveys and other interaction tools which will help us to hear you even better as we grow.   

As part of that mission, we are launching this blog series.  We hope you enjoy it, receive valuable information from it, and share it with your friends and colleagues.   We are close to wrapping up our eighth year, and we simply couldn’t have accomplished any of this without the support of our clients, and the hard work of our employees.  We work hard each day to earn the trust you’ve given us, and we’re excited for what the future holds. 

As always, you can reach out to any member of Team CPR, and we will put our expertise to work for you.  If you have suggestions for future blog topics, you can e-mail those to me directly at Shirley.walker@team-cpr.com