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November - December 2014 •
Volume 19, Issue 6

Templates, Ethics, and Chart Audits
Government Agencies Object to Cloned Documentation
By Jennifer Searfoss, JD, CMPE, and Scott Kraft, CPC, CPMA
It has been difficult for clinicians to identify shortcuts that expedite their use of the electronic medical record (EMR) in ways that don't bog down their day or leave too much charting for after-hours work. So, it makes sense that physicians and other medical professionals would find cloning of parts of the clinical note to be a good use of their time. But, as we'll explain, the federal government does not condone such documentation. Click for more

What a Year for HBMA!
Message from the President
By Jeanne A Gilreath, CHBME, HBMA President
Indeed, we have seen many changes in our association, business, and industry. I knew when I took office that this would be a challenging year; however, as a volunteer leader who cares about our association and industry, I was up for the challenge. Now it is time to reflect on all that we have done, and look forward to the year ahead. Click for more

News for HBMA Members
By Billing Editors
HBMA Members Receive Discount on AAPC Resource Books; New HBMA Members Click for more

Sound Off!
HBMA Members Sound Off on Hot Topics
By Billing Editors
Topic:Tell us how you are handling insurance companies that are not compliant with HIPAA's ERA/EFT regulations. Click for more

Embracing Mobile Technology in the Healthcare Industry
Ensure the Privacy and Confidentiality of Patient Information
By Lauren Collins
The emergence of mobile technology continues to grow within the healthcare industry. In most cases, this is because these forms of technology simply make managing the workflow easier. In other cases, we use technology because we have to. For example, although some physicians are still advocates for paper charts, the use of electronic health records (EHRs) and electronic medical records (EMRs) has been mandated. Click for more

Get the Most Out of Your Clearinghouse
What to Look For When Making a Transition
By Lauren Collins and Cindy Groux, CHBME
Most medical billing companies utilize a clearinghouse. However, there may come a time when your company is ready to transition to a new one. To help you prepare for this potential transition, we have compiled some questions and answers that can guide you through this process. Click for more

Survival Tips for Billing Services in the Evolving Healthcare Landscape
Adapt to Trends to Provide More Value to Your Clients
By Bill Marvin
Many trends in healthcare payments affect the success of billing services, including new HIPAA and financial services regulations, the shift of payments from payors to patients, provider consolidation, and even health system insourcing of billing functions. Nevertheless, innovations in revenue cycle management technology are always disruptive and can immediately impact any billing service of any size. Click for more

Cyber and Privacy Liability Insurance: What Does it Cover?
Adapt to Trends to Provide More Value to Your Clients
By Gamelah Palagonia, CIPM, CIPP/IT, CIPP/US, CIPP/G, ARM, RPLU+
In the last issue of Billing, we discussed how business owners can protect themselves with cyber and privacy liability insurance. This type of insurance can protect you in the unfortunate event of a data breach, which is increasingly becoming a major concern for businesses that deal with sensitive data. Click for more

Claims Payment Automation
How to Make an Educated Choice
By Priscilla Holland, AAP
Many providers have found that claims paid by virtual card have increased this year. As a result, the fees they pay for card acceptance have skyrocketed. Does your practice have a planned response to virtual card claims payments? Do you know your rights under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for a less expensive form of claims payment? Click for more

Build Stronger Relationships with Providers
Eight Strategies for Success
By Karin Anzalone and Laura Bridge
Getting paid in today's complex healthcare climate is no easy feat. Providers face a host of challenges, from declining reimbursement and sluggish cash flow to increasing patient financial responsibility and continuously changing compliance requirements Click for more

Experience Doesn't Cut It
Hire with Skills, Values, and Practices in Mind
By Kevin Herring
What comes to mind when you think of the book title Chainsaw? How about the scariest, bloodiest horror movie you ever saw? If that's what popped into your head, thousands of employees and investors would say you were on the right track – they were all "bloodied" by the so-called turnaround expert and CEO described in this 1990s book, the full title of which is Chainsaw: The Notorious Career of Al Dunlap in the Era of Profit-at-Any-Price. Click for more

Electronic Payments: Reduce the Cost of Getting Paid
Know the Options and Avoid Unnecessary Restrictions
Published with Permission of the American Medical Association (AMA)
The healthcare claims revenue cycle has increasingly moved from the use of paper checks to various forms of electronic payment. Although this has the potential to save physicians, health plans, and the overall health system millions of dollars each year, potential savings can only be realized if electronic payment is implemented effectively by physicians. Click for more

Coding Facet Joint Injections
Coding Corner
By Jackie Miller, RHIA, CCS-P, CPC
In 2008, the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG) published some alarming results from an audit of Medicare facet joint injection claims. The audit was triggered by a massive 76 percent increase in Medicare payments for facet joint injections from 2003 to 2006. Click for more

A Refresher for ICD-10 Implementation
By Valerie Fernandez, MBA, CPC, CPC-H, AHIMA ICD-10 Trainer
July 31, 2014, the Department of Health and Human Services confirmed that the new implementation date for ICD-10 would be October 1, 2015. In light of this, it is important to invigorate planning for ICD-10 implementation right away. There are a number of key items to complete and consider. The following is a refresher of those ICD-10 to dos. Click for more

Document Your Work with Excel's "Comments" Function
By Nate Moore, CPA, MBA, CMPE
If you've ever built a complex spreadsheet, set it aside, and then gone back to it several weeks later only to find you can't remember how the spreadsheet works or what assumptions were built into the logic, comments may be just the thing you're looking for. Excel makes it easy to document the contents of any cell by adding a comment. Here's how to do it. Click for more

We Have the Wrong Priorities: How to Improve Healthcare
From the Road
By Dave Jakielo, CHBME
We all know that federal government officials continue to think that they are the experts on fixing what's "wrong" with healthcare, but as time passes, they have proven to be somewhat clueless on how to improve the system. Click for more

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