It is no secret that healthcare providers are struggling to streamline their cash flow because getting patients to pay in a timely fashion is not always an easy job. Medical debt in the United States has become so commonplace that Forbes reports as many as half of Americans have some kind of medical debt.
Healthcare consumerism refers to the recent movement in the United States toward patients taking a more significant part in choosing their healthcare. With more options available and individuals taking the time to better educate themselves, Ambulatory Surgery Centers feel the impact. As patients become more involved in seeking cost-effective, safe, and efficient methods of treating medical conditions, ASCs have to find ways to ensure patients choose their facility. New ASCs open every year, and the competition for patients is fierce.
An Ambulatory Surgery Center is only as successful as the satisfaction of its patients. Patients who are happy with how they are treated before, during, and after outpatient procedures are some of the best advertising your ASC can receive. Moving into 2022, consider how you can build on an already good patient experience and make it an excellent patient experience.
In December, having a surgical procedure is particularly stressful because most people are trying to get ready for the holidays. The added stress of preparing for Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa can make going to an ASC even more difficult. Be sure your Ambulatory Surgery Center puts some fun holiday traditions in place to alleviate some of this. Creating a cheerful, holiday environment will help alleviate some of your patients' stress and contribute to a pleasanter working atmosphere for your staff.
The end of the year is approaching, when many patients have fully paid their insurance deductibles. They often use this time to fit in any covered medical treatments and surgeries before the end of the year. It's natural to want to have a surgical procedure done in the last few months of the year when it is entirely covered by insurance, but it can overwhelm your ASC with patients trying to schedule at the last minute. Your staff will be fielding many phone calls, trying to maximize scheduling without impacting patient care, and coping with additional billing and insurance issues. Make sure your Ambulatory Surgery Center is prepared for the onslaught.
Ambulatory Surgery Centers are growing in popularity. More individuals every year realize they can get top-quality health care at a reasonable price without having to check into a hospital. Surgeons are also increasingly opting for ASCs over hospitals for various procedures. How do you get these patients and new surgeons to choose your ASC over others in your area?
The staff at the Orthopedic Surgery Center at Bryn Mawr Hospital were looking for ways to improve patient satisfaction at their facility. Case after case, the staff was finding zero patients returned their completed patient satisfaction surveys. Was it because they hated the care they received? Did they lose the survey papers? Bryn Mawr staff knew it was time to get answers to these questions.
It's summertime, when most people think about vacations and enjoying the weather, not having outpatient surgery. Keep the revenue at your ASC from taking a nosedive during the summer months by focusing on ways to keep your facility operating at total capacity and ensure prompt, full payment for procedures.
It's been a challenging year for Ambulatory Surgery Centers. The unprecedented spread of a new virus, financial woes for patients, and continuing changes in how insurance companies treat ASCs for outpatient surgery have all had their impact. Moving into 2021, the success of any ASC hinges on preserving patient safety and satisfaction.