By Nicole Lovato
May 12, 2021
For the past few years, I have been managing the business processes and staff at Azle Vision Source as practice manager. Month to month, I look at the larger business model of our practice so I can make decisions to improve our cash flow while providing the best support for our patient base. Given that I have a good deal of insight into our profit margins, I’m used to executing business decisions that heavily influence how we invest in the practice. Naturally, this leaves me in charge of our claim filing.
Until our full-time biller decided to take another job, we had been billing all our claims in-house. It was clear that the accuracy of our claim filing relied heavily on her expertise and it would be difficult to train someone new to reach her level quickly. That’s why we decided to outsource our billing for the first time. We started off making a costly mistake, but I believe we’ve found a successful long-term solution through VisionWeb that saves us from learning the complex coding and billing procedures while assuring that we’re still getting paid.
Beware of the Unexpected Costs when Researching
After conducting research into the available billing teams, we prioritized keeping costs low and chose a company that seemed to be less expensive in upfront fees. Unfortunately, we quickly discovered that was a terrible decision that ended up costing us far more in reimbursement losses than we saved in monthly fees. Many of the issues we had with this company had to do with their lack of knowledge pertaining to the unique, and sometimes complex, requirements of optometry coding and billing.
We couldn’t afford to have a large percentage of our claims go unpaid for long. After six months of struggling to make it work with the ineffective company, I finally decided enough was enough and looked at other billing companies, specifically looking for a team that was dedicated to optometry-specific coding and not a bunch of different specialties.
Instant Payoff from Switching Services
Our practice had been using VisionWeb’s clearinghouse services for Medicare benefit verification for several years prior to looking into their revenue cycle management services, so we already knew that they were specific to the optometry industry. I heard of VisionWeb’s RCM services through marketing e-mails I had received, and I was intrigued by the fact that they only get paid for the claims that they successfully reimburse. They particularly stood out to me because the team is solely dedicated to optometry billing, which made me feel more secure that our accounts receivable wouldn’t grow due to denied or unfiled claims.
After an initial conversation with a representative from VisionWeb’s RCM team, I was so impressed. He was able to offer me a solution for every single issue that I’d had previously both with in-house billing and utilizing a billing company. Due to the knowledge of the team, I was sold immediately. All I needed to do was meet with my OD and discuss the initial increase in expenses. She was able to immediately see that the cost of not utilizing these services was far greater, so we switched over and weren’t disappointed.
Pleasantly Surprised By Easy Implementation
Transitioning our billing over to VisionWeb was extremely simple. I just filled out a form, took a couple of quick phone calls, and we were up and running without the long downtime that I experienced from the other company. Based on my previous experience, I was mentally prepared for the implementation of the service to be incredibly complicated and take months to work out the kinks. When the transition was over, I was pleasantly shocked with how seamlessly things fell into place and how much of the process was handled by VisionWeb.
Smooth Sailing Ever Since
Since we started working with VisionWeb, very few issues have arisen. When we did have the inevitable concerns or questions, they were very small issues that were quickly resolved. I cannot emphasize enough how refreshing working with VisionWeb’s RCM team has been. I can confidently say our overall claim reimbursements have increased since hiring VisionWeb. Additionally, we spend less of our precious time handling claims in the office. I recommend them highly to my colleagues and encourage anyone looking to outsource billing to avoid making the costly mistake I made and just go straight to VisionWeb.
Nicole Lovato is the practice manager of Azle Vision Source. During her 20 years in the optical industry, she has worked alongside several doctors and acquired a variety of tools and business skills. To contact her: Visionsource17@gmail.com