Collections can be stressful, especially for patients who do not have the financial means to foot big bills upfront or in a short time period. When medical emergencies occur and medical bills rack up, patients often experience a lot of stress both about their medical emergencies and their looming bills. To ease the pain and stress of collection, making it as easy and simple as possible for your patients is one of the best ways to increase their satisfaction with you as a healthcare entity while giving them more peace of mind in their daily lives.
In order to help you prioritize your patients’ well-being, physically, emotionally, mentally, and financially, we’ve put together a list of 3 ways to reduce patient stress during collections.
1. Be gentle.
A harsh, abrupt message or reminder about a looming bill will only add to patient stress and frustration with a collection process. Always remember to be gentle and kind in your payment notices and reminders as well as in your communication with all of the outstanding accounts to reduce patient stress during collections. Your patients are human beings with a lot on their plates. If you’re looking to collect from them in the first place, it’s likely that financial stress is a burden they carry. Gentleness, kindness, and empathy are huge ways that you can show your compassion and care to your patients throughout the collection process.
2. Provide flexibility.
Everyone gets paid on a different schedule. Having limited payment plan options will enhance the financial stress that your patients experience and may also result in you receiving more unpaid bills than paid ones. Providing flexible payment plan options that allow patients to increase self-pay at their own pace within a reasonable time frame is the best way to maximize your recovery and cultivate a positive experience for your patients during collections. Early-out payment options, auto-pay options, and even mobile payment options will cater to a wide range of patients with unique needs.
3. Listen to your patients.
We can’t stress this tenet enough. Listening to your patients is key to empathizing with them, understanding them, and working with them to find the best solution for both of you so that you can recover as much of your money as you can. Asking how you can support your patients, within reason, throughout the entire collections process will make an impact on how they view you and feel about repaying you in the first place. Additionally, requesting feedback after a successful repayment and implementing changes to make your collections experience better will hopefully be a tried and true way of decreasing your patients’ stress in the future.
Here at Frost-Arnett, our trained representatives and accounts receivable management experts excel regarding all things related to healthcare collections. We’re eager to help you implement these 3 methods to improve your patient satisfaction and reduce their stress. Contact us today at 1 (615) 326-6852 to learn more about how we can help.