Does the idea of paperless Radiology service billing seem impossible? It is a reality for Total Medical Management, LLC (TMM), which bills more than a half-million procedures annually for more than 13 hospitals and 35 physicians. Using ImageNow® document imaging, management and workflow software, TMM electronically captures all vital patient encounter information such as insurance data, dictated reports, EOBs and more to create an efficient and timely billing cycle.
Before ImageNow, TMM was perplexed over the whereabouts of 7,800 unbilled exams — and at roughly $70 per exam — the mystery translated into $546,000 in outstanding charges. But with more than 1.5 million pieces of paper filtering through the office each year, TMM staff had no time or efficient means for finding those missing charges. Manual filing and document research consumed the staff’s time and slowed processing turnaround. According to Lynne Deister, HIPAA compliance officer for TMM, the paper inefficiencies were stalling the company’s revenue cycle.
"We'd run into timely filing issues. By the time we were able to gather all the necessary documents, code and bill, it often took longer than the 60 days allowed by some insurance companies," said Deister.
With the implementation of ImageNow, documents received from the hospitals are scanned or captured via electronic data transmissions and automatically placed in the proper queue — indexed with date of service and hospital and patient account numbers. ImageNow eliminates the overwhelming and time-consuming burden of paper, and as a result, TMM eliminated more than 10,000 work hours creating new efficiencies and reducing staffing costs.
"Charges in a miscellaneous patient classification at each hospital were being overlooked," said Deister. "We weren't receiving patient demographics or billing information, and we exhausted thousands of hours trying to chase those documents down."
Now, coders and billing staff have single-click access to all pertinent documents including patient insurance information and dictated physician reports. Certified coders use ImageNow to pull up an imaged document and key the correct code directly into the IDX® system, eliminating data entry rework. With the newfound efficiencies of ImageNow, for the first time, TMM had the ability to easily track all hospitals’ incoming charges and finally solve the problem of more than 7,800 unbilled exams. Once TMM had the advantage of an electronic document repository with search and audit capabilities, the resulting revenue cycle boost was dramatic.
"Because of the auditing capabilities made possible through ImageNow, we were able to quantify a large billing discrepancy and work with the hospital to remedy the problem," said Deister. "In less than one year, we've reduced the number of outstanding charges from 7,800 to 1,200 and the amount of payments outstanding from $546,000 to $84,000, and we expect that trend to continue."
Total Medical Management has achieved significant savings in time and costs in less than one year with ImageNow. And the deployment is just beginning. TMM intends to expand the value of document imaging into other paper-intensive areas such as Accounts Payable and Human Resources. For TMM, paperless Radiology billing is no longer a future goal — it is happening today.
About Perceptive Software
Perceptive Software, Inc., offers document imaging, management and workflow software solutions that simplify document management processes by delivering secure, digitized versions of paper and other electronic documents while leveraging existing business applications. Companies in a broad range of industries worldwide have taken advantage of ImageNow, Perceptive Software's flagship software offering.