Front Office Finesse For Troubled Times
With the rolling recession and layoffs affecting many people, now is the time to rethink the ways that “we have always done it” and look internally for ways to improve our practices to weather the storm. Many businesses have eliminated positions and eliminated the need for the position by becoming more streamlined and requiring remaining staff to learn new skills. It is vitally important that you seek to improve existing skills, not only in technology, but most importantly patient communication. To become “indispensable” to the team, step out of the comfort zone and become an exceptional front office employee. Enrollment is up at many colleges and schools with people who have been laid off and want to change or enhance their careers and those that are taking this opportunity to get a “leg-up” to prevent a layoff.
Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting with a group of long-term dedicated front office ladies from an assortment of different practices, both general and specialist, who expressed frustration with the economy and with trying to help patients get financing. If patients did not have good credit for outside funding, what could they do to creatively find ways to finance these patients without taking risks? The conversation started with emotional recounts and ended with empowerment. Finding new ideas, new tools and support for the work that you do builds confidence and job skills.
Our meeting revealed that there were many systems in their individual practices that were affecting patient acceptance of treatment and contributing to higher than normal accounts receivables. During the meeting, we decided to make a list of the most critical issues that were affecting the practices and then make a determined effort to solve these problems during training. The following represents a list of what the group felt was the most pressing issues from their practices.
As you can see, there are a lot of issues to analyze and work through and that is why practice specific training is so valuable. To address the concern of patients not qualifying for outside funding, it is important to remember that if a patient finance company does not find the patient credit worthy, the practice, being a small business, can not make unqualified loans and accept the risk of non payment either. Ask if the patient finance company would consider the loan if a co-signer was included or if they will approve a smaller amount.
If the patient is known to you and has shown compliance with appointments, followed recommended treatment and has paid in the past, you could offer one of the following:
The current economic situation is having an effect on many practices. Some of your systems are not working like they used to. Without professional training or help, it can render a practice “helpless” and vulnerable to these outside effects.
If you would like to learn more about McKenzie Management’s 2-day Front Office Training Program, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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