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Orthopedic groups rack up median $50K in bad debt — 5 ways to improve collections

Due to the nonelective nature of orthopedic surgery, rising patient deductibles and out-of-pocket costs, and general confusion over medical billing, the median bad debt for orthopedic practices is nearly $50,000, MarketScale reported based on a 2019 Medical Group Management Association report.

MarketScale shared five strategies to help orthopedic practices collect on-time payments:

1. Verify patients' insurance coverage before their initial visit to guide them through the payment process from the very beginning of their medical journey.

2. Simplify billing statements or offer introductory meetings for new patients to keep patients as informed as possible about their financial responsibilities.

3. Clearly outline payment schedules in patient payment agreements.

4. Store patients' credit cards on a secured, encrypted system.

5. Allow patients to make payments, receive reminders, verify insurance and estimate costs via an online portal.


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