Survey: 26% of Hospitals Still Lack ‘Viable’ RCM Solutions

More than a quarter of hospitals still do not have a “viable, effective” revenue cycle management solution in place, according to the results of a survey conducted by Black Book Market Research. ¬†That number is down from 35% that did not have an RCM solution in place six years ago.

While that number is trending in the right direction, it’s trending about as slowly as my middle child eats his dinner — and that takes a really long time. That 26% of hospitals still lack this core functionality is a problem for the healthcare industry, but a significant opportunity for the ARM industry, especially any collection agency that offers first-party, self-pay, or early out collections solutions. Adding additional products and services to their menus can make those agencies significantly more attractive to hospitals that are looking for more help with their back-office operations.

The two largest issues uncovered by the survey with respect to implementing new RCM solutions were:

  1. Difficulty in finding skilled RCM human resources for new RCM software/reimbursement challenges; and
  2. Staffing concerns that make outsourcing core or bolt-on RCM services a better short-term alternative to software implementations

Because there are still so many hospitals that appear to be behind the curve in implementing an effective revenue cycle management solution, 85% of those facilities that participated in the survey said they would hire a consultant or advisor to help them with their RCM outsourcing, if required to do so.

“If hospitals are to maximize revenue and reduce claims take-backs, it is imperative that those still behind the curve find a way to dedicate appropriate resources toward implementing an effective RCM system,” Black Book said in releasing its results. “Empirical evidence shows it pays off in the long run.”

 

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