Guest Blog Contributer: Datatel Communications

At Datatel, we help healthcare providers automate and secure payment transactions that take place over the telephone. Our Automated Pay-By-Phone and Payment Reminder services are comprehensive, cost-effective, simple to implement and maintain, and can save thousands in operational costs.

In today’s competitive and interconnected world, companies and organizations really have no choice in terms of offering ever more enhanced forms of customer service if they wish to stay ahead of the game (or just not fall too far behind...) and medical practices are no exception.

Patients want to be able to do tasks like paying bills at the time of THEIR choosing. However, in an age when we are subjected to regular news reports of serious data breaches at places like Facebook, Equifax as well as many well-known institutions people feel that they have genuine cause for concern about the security of the information we frequently are required to provide when paying bills such as our credit cards.

Today more than ever it is important for your patients to know that their personal information is being protected. You can protect your patients credit card information by implementing automated Pay-By-Phone technology (IVR Payments), together with an Authorrize.Net account, which removes your staff from handling sensitive information. This enables you to enhance your practice’s level of security and help you achieve PCI compliance. Though it sounds as if it is something complicated and expensive, it is really neither of these. In fact, when you improve security, you significantly improve your bottom line as well.

First off, you will reduce operational costs by shifting tasks from paid staff to an automated process. When you enable your patients to pay their bills at times that are outside your normal hours of operation you not only enhance their satisfaction with the services you provide you reduce the time between invoicing and receiving payment.  It enables your practice to handle any number of concurrent payment calls which allows your practice to implement automated payment reminder processes without incurring any additional staffing costs. Studies have shown that more than 1/3 of patients choose to make payments either after hours or on weekends. By having your staff no longer having to handle credit card payments you free them up from having perform time consuming tasks such as listening to voicemails and call backs to obtain payment information. This also cuts down on the possibility of errors occurring. Many have seen their payment handling operating costs go down by as much as 70%. This translates in to thousands of dollars in savings.

Another key cost saving benefit is harder to quantify because it is based on the potential of “what if there is a data breach?” Make no mistake, when data breaches do occur, they are VERY expensive, detrimental to the business and its customers. However, set aside for a moment the costs directly related to the breach itself. When your patients hear that this has occurred how many might just decide they should find another healthcare provider? Businesses will often lose 40% of their customers after a breach occurs. In addition to this potential for lost revenue that will need to be made up there are often fines to pay, extensive audits that need to be done, legal costs, repairs, and so on. 

To learn more, visit Datatel