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ABNs- Creating Doctor-Patient Trust AND Ensuring Doctors Get Reimbursed

Medical billing may not seem like an obvious area for improving doctor-patient relations, but being upfront with your patients about what services Medicare will and won’t cover can build trust between the patient and the doctor.

“Patients may not like what they hear,” according to Orthopedic Coding Alert Magazine, but informing patients that a service may not be covered, and the cost of the service to the patient if it isn’t, helps the patient make better healthcare decisions. They may opt out of services they are not able to pay for.

During this conversation with the patient, it is advised that practices get a signed advance beneficiary notice (ABN) on file before starting services. This document “gives the provider the legal right to bill a Medicare patient for the services that may be denied. Without this, the provider would have to write off services and/or items if denied by Medicare.”

Interestingly, ABN-type forms are being used more and more among private payers. It’s a good idea to get in the habit of having these conversations now – your patients will appreciate it, and so will your bottom line.

If your offices are swamped trying to keep up with the ever-increasing complexity of medical billing and collections, please give us a call at (949) 863-0022 or use our Contact form. We would love to talk to you about how MBC Systems provides medical billing and coding services paired with collections in the most complete Revenue Cycle Management solution available to health care providers of various sizes and specialties.