Overcoming Revenue Obstacles While in a Medical Crisis
A global crisis, such as the Novel Corona Virus (COVID 19), can affect businesses, especially the healthcare sector. As world leaders call for people to stay at home to help slow down localized community transmission, companies have adopted measures for employees such as work-from-home arrangements or a skeletal staff to run operations. This ensures that the crisis’ impact on their revenue cycle will be minimal, and it will still be business as usual.
However, it’s a challenge for the healthcare industry to adopt these practices as they are the frontliners of the battle against this crisis. They are faced with financial pressures, which makes it challenging to formulate revenue management plans to augment their budget. Hospitals in rural areas are the hardest hit (financially) and had to cease operations. This can further cripple the need for vital healthcare for those in need.
Since hospitals and their medical teams play essential roles during these trying times, here are some insights on how they can still serve and overcome the revenue obstacle.
Staff realignment is necessary for maximizing revenues during a crisis. Start by re-training staff to perform different roles to augment staffing issues. Train billers and coders to help with patient registration. They must be familiarized with the process to accommodate more patients. This will also help separate patients who need emergency care from those who need simple medical procedures. Realigning staff also allows the other team to focus on critical work areas within the hospital’s premises. Offer telecommuting to documentation specialists, business analysts, and other admin support staff as they can perform their duties remotely.
Reschedule Elective Surgeries
Although elective surgeries are good sources of hospital revenue, it’s best to either reschedule or cancel these to increase a medical facility’s bed capacity for critical patients. Outpatient facilities, on the other hand, are accepting elective surgeries and other non-COVID 19 patients to ease the pressure on larger hospitals. Patients themselves are also doing their part by electing not to undergo surgeries since modified nursing care is enough until the crisis is resolved.
Review Technological Resources
Since social distancing is now a vital mandate, technology plays a huge role in ensuring the safety of both patients and medical staff. If you want to help minimize person-to-person interaction, devices such as smartphones, tablets, and laptops are used to encode and capture patient data. Patients can input their pertinent data and send them wireless for processing. This also helps lower the risks of localized transmission among patients and hospital staff.
Telehealth also plays a vital role during this crisis. Doctors can now communicate with patients via smart devices and the Internet to provide a diagnosis without the need to meet physically. Popular online messaging tools are being used as telehealth platforms. In the event of a medical emergency, the hospital staff can quickly respond and provide immediate care. Telehealth is a cost-effective way to deliver medical services while augmenting revenues.
Surviving a crisis is challenging, especially for the health industry. Hospitals need to serve patients while worrying about their revenue streams. Leveraging technology and making informed decisions can help the sector endure this global crisis.