In the race to recoup lost revenue while enhancing the patient experience, many healthcare providers are employing automation — specifically robotic process automation (RPA). At ImagineSoftware, our collaboration with OnQ enables us to provide our clients with exclusive access to OnQ’s bots, which equip them with an even more efficient and automated system. Learn how this partnership allows us to utilize ImagineBilling™ to deliver bots quickly and reliably to produce:
- Immediate ROI
- Unlimited scalability
Jack McBride, CEO of ONQ
Armando Lee, Director of Robotic Process Automation for ONQ
TJ Applegate, Director of Business Development Operations for ImagineSoftware
The Advantages of Automation
In an era of labor shortages and increasing consumer demands, healthcare providers are continuing to enlist the help of technology solutions to streamline multiple aspects of their clinical, financial and operational business. One of the most popular solutions is automation, which is used to minimize or eliminate repetitive and labor-intensive manual, paper-based administrative and clinical processes.
Automation is increasingly employed in revenue cycle management (RCM) because it offers more first pass acceptance on claims and better staff efficiency. It achieves this by utilizing machine learning to reduce the time spent between labor-intensive tasks like demographic verification, collections and reporting. Would you believe that RCM automation enables 95 percent of payment posting to be performed — without human intervention?
Automating Rules-Based Tasks
At the forefront of automation for RCM is robotic process automation (RPA), which Gartner defines as a productivity tool that allows a user to configure one or more scripts (referred to as “bots”) to activate specific keystrokes in an automated fashion. The bots can be used to mimic or emulate selected tasks (transaction steps) within an overall business or IT process.
As an automation technology, RPA mimics human behavior for routine and high-volume rule-based tasks to complete transactional and repetitive processes. Although it can’t modify processes without human intervention, RPA uses scripted processes to access structured and unstructured data repositories, APIs, websites, applications and other data sources.
The Benefits of Bots
Short for "robots," Bots utilized in RPA work 24/7 and enable numerous tasks to be completed in a fraction of the time needed by a human – and do so free of errors. They run continuously in the background and improve the efficiency of combining data across multiple sources without the need for costly interfaces.
Depending on the task, there are two types of bots that can be deployed: attended and unattended. Tasks that require human decision-making skills can be initiated by a bot, presented to a person for a decision and then completed by the bot. This type of digital assistant is referred to as an attended bot. Conversely, unattended bots complete a task from start to finish and provide the end user with a log of work completed.
RPA at Work in RCM
Robotic process automation doesn’t only reduce the need for manual data entry. It can be used to automate multiple RCM functions, including intake, claims statusing, coding, payment posting and reconciliation, bill scrubbing, prior authorization, charge capture, eligibility and others.
For example, it can assist in the prior authorization process by gathering information from websites and other disparate systems and integrating that data directly into the health information system. RPA bots can even schedule appointments based on diagnoses, provider availability, location, health coverage and more and route those appointments to a specific work queue
In addition to automating such time-consuming tasks, RPA helps healthcare providers overcome RCM obstacles, such as manual chart pulling, incomplete charts, missing patient demographics, addendums and claim denials. It can be used to mitigate the need for upcoding and downcoding, re-pulling of charts, patient dispositions and volume reconciliation with third parties.
Perks of Employing RPA for RCM
Did you know that, according to the Council for Affordable Quality Healthcare (CAQH), using revenue cycle automation for administrative tasks could generate $17.6 billion in annual savings? That’s in addition to the $166 billion annually the healthcare industry has already avoided by automating administrative transactions. Utilizing RPA specifically benefits healthcare providers by:
- Streamlining the patient experience
- Providing patient-centered care
- Optimizing costs and outputs
- Lowering labor costs
- Allowing employees to focus on more important tasks
- Reducing medical errors
- Seamlessly transferring data
- Increasing revenue capture
- Enhancing revenue integrity
- Reducing coding delays
- Improving time to cash
- Optimizing billing efficiencies
- Strengthening employee engagement
- Increasing employee satisfaction
- Clearing chart backlogs
The ImagineSoftware and OnQ Partnership
Along with leading the way to automate many of the manual tasks associated with reimbursement interruptions, RPA typically can be applied without the additional expenses of outsourcing or investing in a complete software overhaul. Our partnership with OnQ means that our clients gain priority access to OnQ’s library of bots immediately.
Schedule a demo with us to learn how ImagineBilling can automate your charge and claim management, monitor productivity and more, all through customizable and configurable features, settings and workflows.