Goal Setting 101 For Medical Billing

by Carl Mays II

Most people’s New Year resolutions have been abandoned by the end of January. If you find your self in this group then take heart. You can still snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. To do so, you must understand two basic principals of achieving your ambitions:

1. Do not view a minor failure (i.e., you just ate a quart of Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream) as final defeat (i.e., Well I might as well stop trying to give up sweets); and

2. Focus on a sequence of short term goals that make your larger goal seem more manageable (i.e., instead of “I will weigh 120 pounds by December 31st” set a series of goals such as “I will weigh 152 pounds by the end of February. I will weigh 148 pounds by the end of March.” etc).

So, this is interesting, but how does it apply to medical billing? Well, if you keep these ideas in mind you can use them to achieve lofty improvements in medical billing performance. How? Start with a powerful and straight forward goal: Make sure your claims are clean before you submit them. This will help your medical billing in several ways:

– This goal forces you to concentrate on the most critical elements of medical billing – gathering the proper information and using it to create a clean claim;

– This goal can be easily broken down into smaller goals such as “I will improve my acceptance rate by 2% per month or I will implement a claim scrubber by the end of March;

– This goal has many ways in which failure provides powerful learning opportunities. You can set aside time to analyze rejected claims to determine the source of the rejection and then focus on eliminating the problem area.

– There are many tools available to help you achieve this goal. They include claims scrubbers, coding tools, training seminars and insurance verification tools.

What does all of this mean? It means this is the time for a renewed focus on your medical billing business goals. It is time to:

– Determine where you stand today (what percentage of your claims get paid on the first submission);

– Set your medical billing goals high (96% of all claims will be paid on first submission);

– Break them down into bite size pieces (I will improve clean claim submissions by 2% each month), and

– Create a plan for how you will learn from rejected claims.

With this approach you can make 2009 your best medical billing year ever.

Copyright 2009 by Carl Mays II

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