Article provided by: Medical Billing Connection
For many mental health providers, filing insurance claims for their benefits can be particularly frustrating. Time and again, the claims get delayed or rejected, sometimes due to genuine reasons and other times due to overzealousness on the part of the insurance company. The type of services you offer, the laws guiding billing and payment, and the need for pre-authorization in many cases put you and your practice at a disadvantage. However, you can level the playing field by outsourcing your practice’s mental health billing needs to an experienced and trusted provider.
What makes mental health billing so complicated?
The services metal health experts provide are distinctly different from the services their counterparts in other areas of medical practice provide. Instead of removing a ruptured appendix or ordering CT scans, mental health professionals spend a lot of time in therapy sessions, and quantifying these services could be difficult.
Moreover, different patients have widely varying degrees of response, making it difficult to have a standardized duration of treatment. In most cases, insurance laws and companies try to regulate treatment methods and duration, making it difficult for providers to achieve a balance between adequate treatment and getting their deserved reimbursement.
The very nature of mental health service outlets could also contribute to the problem. Private clinics set up by counselors or therapists are often one-person businesses, and to cut down their operating costs, they personally handle mental health billing. Trying to merge providing excellent clinical services with keeping up with continually changing coding and billing regulations is a tough ask on anyone. This leads to a high rate of billing mistakes and claim rejections.
Another factor that complicates mental health billing is the high deductibles and the numerous tactics used by insurance companies to ensure they reduce the amount they pay out in reimbursements. A lot of people battling addiction and other mental health issues cannot afford to pay for the services out of pay for the services received out of pocket. Thus, providers have to work with insurance companies even if there’s no love lost between them.
How can you get insurance companies to process your claims on time?
To ensure insurance companies have no reason for delaying or rejecting your claims, you need to ensure there are no loose knots on your end. Here’s a highlight for some of the things you need to do:
- Use the billing format required by your patient’s insurance company
- Obtain pre-authorization before beginning treatment in certain instances
- Apply the right code for the treatment provided
- Ensure you do not exceed the fees allowed by your patient’s insurance plan when sending the bill
- Send the claim alongside the appropriate policy number
- Submit the claim to the address stated in the patient’s insurance plan
Contact a mental health billing specialist
To optimize your practice’s revenue flow, you need to pay adequate attention to the billing and revenue collection process. Hiring the experts that have the requisite knowledge and experience as members of your organization would cost you a fortune. The more reason why you should consider working with Medical Billing Connection. Get in touch with us today, and we’ll be glad to let you know how we can help.