The Elite Billing and Payment Blog

What Are Chatbots? And How Will They Change Billing and Payment?

Posted by Brian Watson on Thu, Jun 13, 2019 @ 11:24 AM

That super-friendly customer service rep who just live-chatted you through a support request?  Don’t freak out, but there’s a solid chance that the person on the other end of that discussion might not have been a real, live someone after all.

With chatbot technology changing the way that companies can interact with customers – particularly in a service context – businesses of all sizes and specializations are jumping on board the bot bandwagon. 

Leading brands like Apple, Starbucks, Mastercard, and Spotify are now using chatbots to help consumers do everything from order food, to schedule rides, to receive personalized recommendations for nearly anything – all without human intervention. 

And the demand for bots – from both business and consumers – is growing. 

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Tags: Customer Service, Mobile Payment

4 Smart Technologies that Accelerate Patient Billing and Payment

Posted by Brian Watson on Wed, Apr 24, 2013 @ 05:23 PM

On July 20, 1969, the Apollo Guidance Computer (ACG) and an IBM-developed computer mainframe were used to help Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin complete the still-awe-inspiring-feat of traveling 356,000 km from the earth to the surface of the moon. 

And nearly 45 years later, the technology that fueled the space race pales in comparison to the kind of cheap tchotchke you might pick up at your next trade show. 

The ACG is no more powerful than most modern pocket calculators.  And the IBM System/360 Model 75 had less storage capacity than a run of the mill USB memory stick.

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Tags: Customer Service, Online Patient Payment, Self-Pay Patients

A Simple Guide to IVR Billing and Payment

Posted by Brian Watson on Sat, Mar 09, 2013 @ 02:09 PM

IVR, or Interactive Voice Response, has been making big waves in billing circles lately.

A phone-based technology that enables computers to interpret and collect information from people through voice and key-tones, IVR isn’t exactly a new idea for seasoned billers. 

But it’s gotten a serious facelift in recent years. 

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Tags: Customer Service, Mobile Payment, IVR

The Platform for Payments: EBPP's Role in Revenue Channel Management

Posted by Brian Watson on Sat, Oct 20, 2012 @ 04:02 PM

When it comes to revenue collection, there’s no such thing as too many payment channels.

Collecting the self-pay revenue that you’re owed – quickly and efficiently – is a fundamental part of your business model.  And more-than-critical to the overall financial health of your bottom line.

To ensure that you’re collecting as much revenue as possible, your pay options should be plentiful.  Fortunately, revenue cycle professionals have been proactive in that area: rolling out simple, effective billing models that give patients plenty of choice in the matter.

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Tags: EBPP, Customer Service, Self-Pay Patients

How to Improve Patient Service with EBPP Communication Tools

Posted by Brian Watson on Mon, Oct 01, 2012 @ 04:01 PM

When it comes to patient billing, great service is a must.

That’s because questions and issues are inevitable.  No matter how through, or patient friendly, or easy-to-understand-and-use your patient statements might be, support opportunities will be plentiful. Patients will have questions: about insurance payments, their contribution, their bill, where and how to pay, the cost of their treatment, and the financial support services you offer.  Plus any number of additional quandaries, queries, and problems. 

And while phone support is a critical tool used by healthcare providers to provide patient billing and financial help (and, if done well, can help boost patient satisfaction and brand equity), it can also be pretty expensive. 

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Tags: EBPP, Customer Service

Staying Compliant: 5 Ways EBPP Enhances Revenue Cycle Security

Posted by Brian Watson on Sat, Aug 25, 2012 @ 01:09 PM

HIPAA patient privacy laws present healthcare providers with a difficult set of regulatory challenges. 

There’s the detailed audit trail you need to have to prove compliancy beyond a shadow of a doubt.  Looming HITECH rules set to increase scrutiny of financial services providers and their PHI-related activities.  Not to mention target dates, interim rules, interim final rules, and swirling deadlines.  It all gets a little bit complicated.  And stressful.

That’s where EBPP can once again play an important role.  As we’ve written about in the past, eStatement solutions are about much more than just online statement access and balance payment.  They also automate and add efficiency.  Eliminate common print and mail costsStreamline patient service practices.  And have the data protection bona fides to help you enhance the security of your revenue cycle practices.

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Tags: EBPP, Customer Service

Protecting Patient Data: 4 EBPP Solution Security Best Practices

Posted by Brian Watson on Mon, Aug 13, 2012 @ 04:41 PM

When it comes to online payment software, much of the focus (from both solution providers and healthcare organizations) tends to revolve around the impressive effects it can have on financial operations: from speeding statement presentment and balance payment, to eliminating common billing materials and processing overhead, to boosting customer service efficiency.  (And we’re certainly guilty of placing the lion’s share of our attention on that angle in our blog articles as well).

But perhaps the most important place to start the comparison among eStatement solutions is security and compliancy.  Ensuring that your EBPP solution provider has a detailed, documented, tested, and verified set of security processes to safely protect Patient Health Information (not to mention the best-practice technology to back-up those standards) is beyond critical. 

That’s because the costs of non-compliance are considerable.  And growing.  The 2009 HITECH and 2010 Affordable Care Acts have already, or will soon, put into practice a slate of new rules and regulations that not only provide greater scrutiny of business associates and new operating rules for financial transactions, but also beefed-up breech rules and stricter enforcement across the board.

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Tags: EBPP, Customer Service

EBPP's Hidden Impact: 5 Tools That Help Improve Service Efficiency

Posted by Brian Watson on Thu, Jul 12, 2012 @ 03:22 PM

Online bill presentment and payment software (or EBPP if you’re an acronym aficionado) is a topic that has significant top-of-mind resonance with healthcare revenue cycle professionals these days.  And with good reason. 

As we’ve written about in the past, EBPP has tipped past the early-adopter-only point and is firmly positioned smack dab at the intersection of thriving with patients and really productive for providers. 

According to IDC Financial Insight’s 2012 Consumer Payment Survey, online channels are now the dominant way for consumers to pay bills (with over 50% of respondents using bill payment sites and 73% of all U.S. consumers paying a bill online). 

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Tags: EBPP, Customer Service, Online Patient Payment

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