How automating patient billing helped CleanSlate Centers increase collections and streamline operations
Marketplace case study
Lack of consistent follow-up in the billing process led to a large amount of patient A/R due
CleanSlate Centers, an outpatient addiction facility with 76 centers across 10 states, was having trouble collecting patient balances in a humane and sensitive way. Because they didn’t want to send patients to a collections agency, the practice was writing off hundreds of thousands of dollars per year to bad debt, limiting their ability to invest in other areas of the practice. Their staff didn’t have enough bandwidth to follow up on paper statements and respond to every patient call, so there was a backlog of patient questions. The organization needed an automated yet personal way to communicate with patients to collect more on overdue balances.
Automating the patient billing process to follow up with patients and give them more payment flexibility
CleanSlate partnered with Collectly, an athenahealth marketplace partner, to automate the billing process and deliver flexible, tactful, and personalized messaging to each patient. Statements are automatically sent out as soon as a patient has a balance due, and follow-up is done by digital outreach, limiting the need for staff to contact patients by phone. Furthermore, the majority of patient support switched to an on-demand chat service, which decreased calls to the practice and allows the staff to answer at a time that is convenient for them. The portal also gives patients a HIPAA and PCI-compliant way to self-serve their payment needs via their mobile device or desktop.
Significant increase in practice revenue and patient engagement
After a two-week on-boarding process, taking up just a few hours for CleanSlate’s billing specialist to customize and fully set up, they went live on the Collectly platform. Within one month, CleanSlate collected 1,632 outstanding patient payments, and patient revenue has increased by over 250 percent overall. Using Collectly also helped the facility cut down paper statements by over 80 percent, and they’ve saved money on printing and postage as a result. Patient engagement immediately increased using the chat functionality, enabling the practice to answer questions about bills faster and ensure no roadblocks are preventing patients from making payments. Collectly also shortened the time to collect patient payments, down to an average of around 12 days from the moment the billing cycle begins.
*all metrics provided by Collectly and CleanSlate Centers