Prepping Your Practice For The New Year

Prepping Your Practice for the New Year: Improving Patient Retention and Outcomes

With 2023 on the horizon, it’s time to brace your practice for an influx of new patients that have resolved to improve their health. But that’s not all that the new year brings!

Every year, certain aspects of every healthcare organization must be updated, usually concerning new insurance rules. Whether these rules change significantly or not at all, you must adhere to them if you prefer being paid accurately for your services. That’s why we encourage every therapy and rehab provider to set aside time to go through standard housekeeping tasks to ensure that your practice maintains compliance – to save both revenue and future headaches!

Join us as we review strategies to help your patients meet their personal goals, retain your new patients, as well as look over the new medical laws and regulations that your practice needs to be aware of.

Helping Patients Meet Their Personal Goals

Let’s reflect on 2022. Did your patients meet both your goals for their healthcare and the personal goals they set for themselves? Ultimately, the most effective way to improve your patient retention and outcomes is to deliver a quality experience, which, for the modern patient, often requires a personal touch.

Beyond using data to personalize the healthcare experience, there are other key strategies that outpatient therapy providers can use to improve patient retention and outcomes:

  • Utilize EMR technology to improve communication efforts with patients, both in and out of the office
  • Encourage patients to be active participants in their own care with the help of engagement tools that can create targeted campaigns

While there are many ways to achieve your goals for your therapy and rehab practice, positive patient retention and outcomes heavily depend on your practice having the communication and engagement tools needed to deliver quality experiences.

Patient Retention: Improving Patient Communication and Engagement

Whether your patients are new to your practice or seasoned regulars, outpatient physical and occupational therapy services are constantly at battle with patient retention. While the reason why can be difficult to pinpoint, by analyzing patients that successfully complete their treatment your practice can get a better idea of what works best for your community.

But what exactly can your practice do to see an improvement in patient retention and outcomes by the start of 2023? One thing we know for sure is that open, transparent communication is one of the most effective ways to retain patients and ensure that your practice is making the best clinical decisions. Here are some changes to patient communication you can set up now to prepare for the new year:

  • Give your patients a portal to access their medical history, update their information, and fill out required forms.
  • Streamline your front office workflows with an automated digital intake process that allows patients to fill out virtual paperwork outside of the waiting room.
  • Set up automated messaging for appointment reminders, follow-up surveys, and more! With engagement tools that allow you to sort patients into groups, implementing targeted campaigns to relevant demographics can take your patient experiences to the next level.

While the right digital solution will facilitate accurate medical coding and keeping up with updates to healthcare regulations, every year your staff should take the time to familiarize themselves with upcoming Medicare changes and more.

All Those Rules…

It’s a lot, remembering the ever-changing Medicare rules and regulations. We get it! The following rules are some of the changes to Medicare for the calendar year (CY) 2023.

CMS’s Final Rule

Every year, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) releases the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule. Below are some takeaways for 2023.

The new outpatient threshold amount is $2,230 for PT and SLP services combined and $2,230 for OT services. After reimbursement for services reaches these dollar amounts, the KX modifier must be applied to charges that the therapist deems medically necessary to continue.

Telehealth services will continue to be reimbursed for the duration of the public health emergency (PHE) plus an additional 151-days. The latest extension of the COVID-19 PHE ends on January 11, 2023.  

The Stabilizing Medicare Access to Rehabilitation and Therapy Act (SMART) was not part of the final rule but is still a live bill in Congress. We’re not giving up hope that this vital legislation will be passed soon, which will mitigate the budget cuts for reimbursement of services provided by PTAs and COTAs. Take action, PT and OT providers!

The Cures Act

If you’re not already familiar, The Cures Act policy requires healthcare providers to give patients access to all of their electronic health information (EHI) without delay and without charge. This legislation made information blocking illegal, and by Jan 1, 2023, providers must be prepared to comply, whether they use an EMR/EHR system or not.

Additionally, on October 6th, 2022, the Cures Act was expanded to require that all EHI be shareable.

Let Raintree’s All-in-One EMR Handle the Heavy Stuff!

The last thing you need in the new year is time taken away from patient care because a minor rule was overlooked – potentially causing a denial or audit you have to quickly address. When you pick Raintree, you pick an interoperable practice management solution that incorporates updates from federal payors, insurance-specific medical billing rules, and other compliance standards!

In 2023, look forward to streamlined workflows, improved patient relationships, and increased overhead with the help of our robust patient engagement tools, automated revenue cycle management, and more.

Request a free demo from us today!