What is an Effective Patient Billing Cycle?

As essential but unsavory component of your podiatric practice is ensuring that you are properly compensated for the services you provide.  The 30-60-90 day billing plan outlined below is an effective system for collecting fees. Be sure to keep copies of all statements and correspondence as well as a written record of all phone calls in the patient’s file.

  1. Give the patient a bill upon rendering service if it is agreed the patient will pay for services after leaving the office and if their insurance company doesn’t cover the full amount of the bill.

  2. After insurance has paid their portion and an explanation of benefits (EOB) has been received, immediately send the first mailed statement. 

  3. If no payment is received within 30 days, a letter and second mailed statement should be sent with a handwritten note on the statement.

  4. If no payment is received within 15 days, the first phone call should be made and documented in the patient’s file. Note: the most successful times for reaching patients are 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. and on Saturdays.

  5. If no payment is received within 30 days after sending the last statement, a letter and third mailed statement needs to be sent to the patient requesting payment.

  6. If no payment is received within 15 days after sending the letter requesting payment, a second phone call should be made.

  7. Finally, if no payment is received within 30 days after sending the last letter, send a letter and final, fourth mailed statement noting that payment is due within ten days or the matter will be forwarded to a collections agency.

Stay professional yet firm when attempting to collect on patient bills. If it makes you or your staff uncomfortable to call patients about unpaid bills, you can hire a professional collector to make the calls.

Billing and office procedures are just two of the many areas of your practice that the Institute of Podiatric Excellence and Development can assist you with. Learn more about the benefits of membership with this organization whose mission it is to bridge the gap between students and practitioners of all levels by contacting us at info@podiatricexcellence.org.