While hospitals install electronic medical record systems to collect IT-related stimulus dollars, and figure out how to cope with new mandates under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, something less splashy but just as significant is happening to the self-pay portion of their receivables: It's going up. Currently at a median of 20% according to a recent study from the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA), it's only going to go higher over the next few years. Properly managing the accounts of patients who pay a significant percentage of their bill out of pocket will be a key strategy to achieve or maintain profitability in the tumultuous payment environment accompanying the rollout of federal reform laws.
Ontario Systems is a leader in managing receivables in healthcare and other industries. CEO Tony Reisz talks about why self-pay is going up, how hospitals can meet the challenge, and what they can learn from companies in other fields.