By Steve Wiggins
Jan. 2, 2019
As the co-owner and office manager of Two Rivers Eye Care in New Braunfels, Texas, I have a shared focus to ensure that the practice is a success, the business is running efficiently, and the people that are entering the practice are receiving the attention and care they need to meet their vision care needs.
However, as the practice continued to grow, a critical component of our practice was falling behind, costing us a lot of money. Our claims management.
When the practice was just getting started, my wife, Natalie Wiggins, OD, taught herself the billing process. But soon, the practice grew to a pace where it wasn’t feasible for her to manage billing and provide optimal care to patients. We hired an in-house billing manager to take on claim management, but after six years we noticed that the claim reimbursements weren’t keeping up with our business growth. Taking a deeper look after we parted ways with our billing manager, we found a lot of missing claim submissions and rejected and denied claims.
After partnering with a consultant with experience in advising eyecare professionals on how to grow their practice to maximize profits, we realized that the way we were doing billing couldn’t scale. Needing a solution that would allow me to ensure practice success, increase efficiency, and shift our focus back to our patients, we followed the consultant’s recommendation of partnering with a Revenue Cycle Management provider to manage our vision and medical claims.
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How My RCM Provider Primed Practice Growth
As an entrepreneur, enabling practice growth is a top priority. As our practice grows, we are able to fill more exam chairs and provide more members of our community with quality eyecare. With this growth, I was certain that our previous claim management processes would impede our ability to reach to our full potential.
I consider the billing experts who are now managing my claims as members of the Two Rivers Eye Care family. After signing on, the team was quick to make a positive impact on our billing process. With a new staff member, an associate OD, and a new location, our RCM service provider was the last piece the practice needed to ensure successful growth.
How Outsourcing Our Billing Increased Practice Efficiency
There are a lot of moving pieces in an optometric practice. To care for our patients, reduce staff burnout, and earn a profit, everything in our practice has to be running efficiently. However, managing our claims started to become a barrier to the rest of the practice and caused a lot of frustration for everyone involved.
When we moved away from managing our billing in-house, our Revenue Cycle Management service provider stepped in and immediately worked with us to improve our processes and worked with our payers to get them all paying us the same way. By offloading our billing and adopting the suggested processes, I went from spending 30 plus hours managing claims each week to spending one or two hours a week filling out missing information.
Why Patient Satisfaction Grew Once We Stopped Chasing Claims
When we were doing our billing in-house, there was a lot of stress on my team and me to try and balance patient care and claims management. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy to do. Focusing too much on billing would take away our focus on patient care, and too much focus on patient care would allow for billing errors, missed claim submissions, un-worked rejections and denials.
Once we switched to VisionWeb’s Revenue Cycle Management service, we were able to shift our focus 100 percent onto our patients and the people entering our practice.
As long as we’re pulling benefits, documenting correctly and following up on any missing information, I’m confident that we’re getting paid and our patients are getting the level of service they deserve.
Schedule a consultation to see what VisionWeb’s Revenue Cycle Management service can do for your optometric practice.
Steve Wiggins is the co-owner and office manager of Two Rivers Eye Care in New Braunfels, Texas.