June 2018
The Podiatry Billing Experts
 Dear SMB Client,

Summer is upon us.  The smell of freshly cut-grass in the air, taste of a wonderful BBQ and watermelon, opportunity to dive into the deep end, and ability to have fun gatherings with friends and family consume your days.  We hope you have a happy and safe summer filled with wonderful memories.  In this newsletter, we will focus on a improving your billing with a daily checklist and using content to generate website traffic.  If there is a certain article or topic you would like us to focus on, please call Chad at 888-874-5503.

Daily Checklist
Cheryl Sands Executive Vice President
Send remits and proof of patient payments daily to SMB:
It is true that we get a lot of remits online at our claims clearinghouse site. But there are many that are still not available electronically. We need your help in getting these sent to us. Also, it is very important that patient payments (that are mailed to your office) are recorded as quickly as possible. So please fax, scan or email those proof of payments daily to us! This will cut down on angry phone calls from your patients. If we don't know they paid their bill, we will continue to bill them. That tends to make them very upset, if they have already paid. We want to avoid that.
Remember to include the date last seen on your routine foot care when needed:
When you see a Medicare patient for routine foot care and the diagnosis is diabetes, please include the date they last saw their PCP and the date. This has to be included in order for Medicare to pay the claim. (The date seen needs to be within 6 months of the date of service.) Get your office staff in the habit of asking every time. When in doubt send the DLS and PCP - it is better to have too much information than not enough.
Respond to requests for additional information quickly:
There are many times that we need additional information; such as letters of medical necessity, office notes, an operative report, or a patient's new insurance information. We only ask if we really need it. Assign one individual in your office to be in charge of getting this information back to us quickly. We will stay on top of these, but we do need your help to get these items back to us quickly!
Refer your patients to SMB when they have billing questions:
We have a toll-free number on every patient statement we mail. (866-514-0380) Get them in the routine of calling us for help. We have friendly, experienced customer service agents standing by to help. They are trained to deal with people in a professional courteous manner. After all, we know that we are a reflection of your office so we treat them with the utmost respect. We want to take this off your plate, so that your staff can focus on the needs in your office. We know how busy you are and that is why you have us to offload these types of issues.
Send claims to us daily:
This is the best way to ensure that your money flow stays consistent. Be sure and ask each patient every time they come in for new insurance cards or if anything has change on their personal info; address, phone, etc. Collect a copay each time, also. The best time to collect money is when the patients are right there in front of you. They are used to paying a copay at the time of service and should be fine with it. If you need to know how to look up balances due, contact us for a refresher course on our system. We are glad to show you around.
Thank you for your help with these items above. Working together to maximize your reimbursements and getting claims out the door quickly and correctly the first time is our goal. We appreciate all you do!

Using Content to Generate Website Traffic
Jessi Bixler Bixler Consulting LLC
In the March newsletter, you may recall the importance of developing patient trust and rapport through an online presence, specifically a professional practice website. Internet users invoke a sense of empowerment by using traditional Google search and voice search features such as Alexa and Siri.

Perhaps you've had a website for a number of years but it was built out of necessity rather than to generate new patient leads. According to the  Nielson Norman Group, you have 59 seconds to engage users before they make a decision to stay or leave your site. There are four main reasons why a user will leave your website when: 1) they don't get what they expected, 2) the site isn't usable, 3) they don't know what to do, and 4) they suspect you aren't being genuine.

Now, take a look at your website from the eyes of a prospective patient. Would any of the four points above be a reason why they left your website? If the answer is yes, it's time for a refresh, starting with content. Great content is easy to find, navigate, consume and often share. Patients visiting a practice website expect an easy to understand navigation and layout, topic appropriateness and digestible information. Keep in mind, you don't need long, complex pages with large amounts of text to connect with patients and potential patients. In fact, long, complex pages are often why you lose an audience.

Approach each page with an easy-to-use layout that is pleasing to the eye and instructs patients about what to do, what they'll be getting, and remove doubt or perceived risk when taking action such as submitting a contact request form.

In fact, a medical client of Bixler Consulting launched their content-rich website using the above strategies and yielded over 70 new opt-in leads in just three months! For a free digital strategy consultation on your existing or new website, please contact Jessi at  Bixler Consulting, (816) 866-5249.

SMB Medical Billing

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