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June 2011 Client Newsletter

Medicare advantage

We have added a new Financial Class – Medicare Advantage – to your reports to help track this segment of patients. Financial Class is always based upon the primary insurance. If you have any questions, please call Rich.

CRedit card payments

As a follow-up to a question about credit cards, the credit card payment is deposited directly into your bank account by the credit card vendor. Other than recording the payment information, or potentially entering the credit card info, CPB is not involved in the transaction. If you are interested, I will be glad to forward the 2 vendors we interviewed who will be glad to give you an online demo.

EHR’s & weather disasters

A friend from our professional association lives near Joplin, MO which as you probably know experienced severe tornadoes the week of May 23rd. Here is what she related about 5 of her clients:

“Out of the five offices destroyed, two were using an EHR with offsite secure hosting. Those two practices were able to contact patients and do medication refills the day after the disaster (for those patients not affected by the devastation). Three were still using paper charts and have lost all records. They have their financial records with us but medical records are gone.”

We aren’t pushing EHR’s, but are supporting several clients who have begun using them and have been a resource to others who are still looking. As you search for an EHR vendor, remember that we have comparison data for a number of EMR programs in a spreadsheet. We are also happy to assist you with this process at no cost.

United Healthcare’s (UHC) Medicare advantage plan

We are hearing some complaints from our colleagues about low reimbursement rates for the Medicare Advantage Plan (Secure Horizons Plan) offered by United Healthcare. There has also been discussion about non-Medicare UHC low reimbursement and complaints that UHC will begrudgingly increase the fee schedule but then require the provider in writing to forego any further increases for 3 years!

Moral of the Story: Be careful what you sign – be sure to read the agreement for any plan you are considering participating with. Be sure to review the insurer’s Fee Schedule in advance of signing and be sure the contract provides for annual fee increases – or allows you to terminate the agreement without a long termination period.
2011 Client Newsletter Archive