Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) Industry Checklist:
Patient Registration

Accurately record patient demographic and insurance details: Capture comprehensive and correct patient data to ensure smooth billing and reduce the chance of claim rejections.

Confirm eligibility and benefits with insurance providers: Verify coverage to prevent denials due to issues like lapse in policy or service not covered.

Secure pre-authorizations for procedures when necessary: Obtain prior approvals for treatments to ensure payment and inform patients of potential out-of-pocket costs.

Review and update patient information at each visit: Keep patient records current to avoid claim delays and provide continuity of care.

Collect copays and inform patients of financial responsibility: Collecting due payments at the point of service helps maintain cash flow and sets clear expectations for the patient.

Charge Capture and Coding

Utilize correct and updated CPT and ICD codes for services rendered: Accurate coding is critical for billing and compliance, reducing the likelihood of denied claims.

Review documentation for accuracy before coding: Ensure the medical services provided are documented correctly to support the codes billed to payers.

Ensure modifiers are used correctly: Correct use of modifiers can directly impact reimbursement and reduce the need for costly rework and resubmissions.

Perform regular coding audits to reduce errors: Audits help identify and rectify coding issues before they result in denials or compliance problems.

Provide ongoing coding education to staff: Continuous education ensures that coding staff stays current with the latest guidelines and changes in medical coding.

Claim Submission

Implement claim scrubbing software to check for errors:
Pre-submitting software can catch and allow for correction of errors before claims are denied.

Submit claims within timely filing limits: Timely submission is crucial to avoid missing deadlines that could lead to unreimbursed services.

Track claims through clearinghouses for immediate feedback: Use clearinghouses to receive immediate rejections and corrections, speeding up the payment process.

Reconcile submitted claims with payer acknowledgments: Confirm that claims are accepted and processed by payers to ensure they are on track for payment.

Utilize electronic submission methods to expedite processing: Electronic submissions are faster, more reliable, and allow for quicker feedback compared to manual methods.

Payment Posting and Reconciliation

Automate payment posting where possible: Automation ensures that payments are posted quickly and accurately, reducing administrative burden.

Reconcile payments with bank deposits daily: Daily reconciliation prevents discrepancies in financial records and ensures that all payments are accounted for.

Post adjustments and denials with appropriate codes: Accurate posting of adjustments and denials is crucial for correct reporting and financial analysis.

Identify and address underpayments: Regularly check for underpayments to ensure that the practice is receiving all due revenue.

Ensure patient statements reflect accurate balances: Accuracy in patient statements builds trust and reduces the number of inquiries and disputes.

Denial Management

Analyze denials for patterns and root causes: Understanding common causes of denials can lead to systemic changes that reduce future denials.

Appeal unjustified denials promptly: Quick and well-documented appeals are more likely to be successful in overturning denials.

Track and document outcomes of denial appeals: Monitoring appeal outcomes helps in refining the appeal process and preventing similar future denials.

Adjust processes to prevent future denials: Proactive adjustments to billing processes can decrease the denial rate and improve revenue flow.

Educate staff on common denial reasons and prevention strategies: Knowledgeable staff can prevent errors that lead to denials, streamlining the revenue cycle.

Accounts Receivable (A/R) Management

Prioritize A/R follow-up based on payer and balance size: Strategically focusing on high-value or aging accounts maximizes revenue recovery efforts.

Implement a system for early intervention on delinquent accounts: Addressing delinquencies early can significantly shorten the A/R cycle and improve cash flow.

Negotiate payment plans with patients as needed: Flexible payment options can reduce patient bad debt and improve overall patient satisfaction.

Use aging reports to manage outstanding balances: Aging reports are vital for identifying and acting on overdue accounts to maintain a healthy cash flow.

Review A/R metrics regularly for process improvement: Regular analysis of A/R metrics can help identify inefficiencies and opportunities for improvement in the revenue cycle.

Reporting and Analytics

Monitor KPIs like Days in A/R, Denial Rates, and Collection Ratios: Tracking these indicators helps in gauging the effectiveness of the RCM process and identifying areas for improvement.

Analyze financial data for trends and insights: Ongoing analysis can reveal patterns that guide strategic decisions and operational enhancements.

Regularly report to management with actionable intelligence: Providing management with concise, actionable data can drive better decision-making and resource allocation.

Utilize predictive analytics to anticipate future challenges: Leveraging predictive models can help in proactively addressing potential issues before they impact the revenue cycle.

Leverage data to negotiate better payer contracts: Data-driven insights can strengthen negotiation positions with payers, potentially leading to more favorable contract terms.

Compliance and Auditing

Keep abreast with changing healthcare regulations: Staying current with regulations ensures compliance and avoids potential fines or legal issues.

Conduct regular compliance training for staff: Ongoing training is necessary to maintain a culture of compliance within the organization.

Perform internal audits to ensure adherence to policies: Regular audits help ensure that billing practices meet the required standards and guidelines.

Respond to audit findings with corrective action plans: Addressing audit findings promptly helps mitigate risks and reinforces compliance.

Document compliance efforts and outcomes: Thorough documentation demonstrates a commitment to compliance and can be beneficial during external audits or investigations.

Patient Experience

Provide clear communication about financial policies: Clear policies help set the right expectations and improve the overall patient experience.

Offer user-friendly online payment options: Easy-to-use payment options can enhance patient convenience and satisfaction, while also improving the timeliness of payments.

Technology and Process Improvement

Implement RCM software that integrates with EHR/EMR systems: Integration streamlines processes, reduces manual entry, and minimizes errors.

Use automation to reduce manual errors and increase efficiency: Automating repetitive tasks frees up staff for more complex tasks and improves overall process efficiency.

Ensure data integrity and security across all platforms: Strong data governance ensures accuracy in billing and protects against breaches.

Regularly review technology ROI and impact on processes: Periodic reviews help to ensure that technology investments are yielding expected benefits.

Stay informed about new technologies and industry best practices: Keeping up with technological advances can provide competitive advantages and operational improvements.