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Now is the Time to Check for Unbilled Items

Now is the Time to Check for Unbilled Items

COVID-19 is the gift that keeps on giving — quarantines, social distancing, shuttering at home. It’s taking a toll on our families, communities, and practices. In the past two weeks, the number of pediatric visits has plummeted for many pediatricians across the country (if you’re in a part of the country where it’s still business as usual, keep reading because this may be beneficial for you in the near future).

Although this isn’t ideal by any stretch of the imagination, the good news is there are some things you can do to increase payments in the short-term:

  1. Clean up old accounts and find work you’ve done, but haven’t billed for
  2. Clean out your older claims

Clean Up Older Accounts

To do this, run “missed charges” reports, to show work you’ve done but haven’t billed for. You can go back for the last 90-180 days, depending on your regional timely filing deadlines. Some payers, like Tricare, let you go back an entire year. You’ll most likely be surprised at what you find.

For example, you may find that you charged for a vaccine, but didn’t include the E&M charge for that visit.

No worries — simply resubmit a corrected claim with everything you should have included the first time around.

A little tip: It’s actually better to void the claim, create a new claim with everything in it, then reapply the payment you already received on the vaccine against the new claim.

Clean Out Older Claims

Since you probably have fewer new claims to post, take this time to review your pending older claims. You may discover you have a claim that is not moving through the system because a parent hasn’t filled out the COB form. Under normal circumstances, you may not have the time to chase down the parent. However, now you may be able to do so, and actually have better luck speaking to the parent and resolving the issue.

The cleanout possibilities are endless. Consider working older claims that have fallen by the wayside and sending unpaid patient bills to collections. This may sound like a lot of work, but now is the time to tackle it. When this crisis passes, you will be inundated with well visits, sick visits, and more.

I am convinced that pediatric practices can and will get through this trying time. So run a few reports, submit those unbilled and corrected claims, and let’s keep things going for the next few weeks until we get through this.

For more articles from the Pediatric Success Series, related to COVID-19, click here.

Suzanne Berman, MD, FAAP
sBerman@officepracticum.com


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