Automation – Which Tasks to Choose?

Joe Lewis

There are many benefits to automating redundant tasks — particularly avoiding human error and freeing up people for higher-level tasks like working claims.

Any task that involves a repeatable set of commands or data can be automated. Here’s how it works, using Electronic Claim production as an example:

  • Just as with a manual process, start by listing all the payers to include. Determine the format and what information to include in each payer’s claim file.
  • Decide how often you want the job to run (such as every night at 10 p.m.).
  • At the set time, the program searches your system and finds all invoices eligible for claim submission.
  • Next, it creates one file with a collection of invoices for each payer and transmits the file electronically to the payer (insurance company or government program).
  • The program then compiles a verification file listing all the invoices that went out. Depending on your needs, that verification file could be emailed to your cellphone or simply posted to a specific folder on your network.
  • The job can be coded to give you flexibility. Businesses usually run this nightly, but depending on volume, you might choose to run some payers less frequently.

Plenty of repetitive tasks don’t require human resources. Consider automating these:

  • Paper Claim production: Similar to electronic claim production, but the file usually is sent to a designated printer each night. That way it’s ready for mailing in the
  • Statement and Credit Letter production: Often run weekly, these are like paper claims. But instead of being sent to insurance companies or government program payors, bills are sent to self-pay patients.
  • Tracer production: Automatically send reminders at a set timespan after an original claim is sent, if no response has been received.
  • BAR Month End Close: Create a program to officially close the month for Billing Accounts Receivable (BAR) purposes and open a new billing period.
  • BAR Month End Reports: Automatically run a report compiling the previous month’s revenue, payments and services breakdown. You spend your time on analysis, not bird-dogging a monthly task.

A task doesn’t have to take a lot of time to be a good candidate for automation. Even a 20-minute job that is repeated every night adds up over time. Ask yourself where your pain points are – where are you using human resources on repetitive work?

Are you automating redundant work in your business? Which tasks have given you the greatest savings?

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