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Impact of Healthcare BPO Services on Patient Care

Owing to increased awareness, patients now know the value and possibility of receiving best-in-class treatment, and hence do not wish to compromise on this aspect. This puts pressure on healthcare organizations to focus more on value-based performance and improve their outcomes for patients to survive and excel in the competition. By outsourcing their non-core tasks to a reliable service provider, medical organizations can free up their valuable resources and time to dedicate to patients.

In this blog, we will discuss how healthcare BPO services play a critical role in enhancing patient outcomes and how you can adopt it by partnering with the right outsourcing company. Read on to know more.

How healthcare BPO services can be beneficial in improving patient outcomes?

The global healthcare BPO market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8% between 2023 to 2028, according to a recent study by Mordor Intelligence. [Source: Mordorintelligence]. This growth is being driven by a number of factors, including the increasing demand for healthcare services, the need to improve operational efficiency, and the lack/shortage of in-house expertise.

Healthcare BPO services can help organizations work on the factors mentioned above and improve their patient offerings by:

●     Providing access to specialized experts

Healthcare organizations don’t always have experienced and skilled resources in-house to manage their non-medical operations efficiently, leading to delayed care, errors, and high costs.

BPO companies can provide healthcare organizations with access to experts in non-core tasks, such as billing, record management, and claim processing, which can help them improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their operations, without the need to invest in hiring or training internal staff.

●     Freeing up more time to dedicate to patients

BPO companies can relieve healthcare practitioners of managing repetitive and tedious non-core tasks, freeing up their time and resources to focus on attending to patients and providing them with quality care. Even during periods of high demand, BPOs are capable of scaling up their teams to adjust to higher workloads.

●     Complying with healthcare regulations

Healthcare BPO companies abide by all the necessary regulations and data security standards, such as HIPAA, GDPR, PCI DSS, etc., to safeguard the sensitive information of patients, which can otherwise be difficult to manage in-house for medical organizations if the professionals are not aware of the guidelines. Also, BPO service providers keep regular track of changes in regulations and train their staff accordingly to protect hospitals and healthcare practitioners from legal liabilities.

●     Reducing operational costs

In some cases, the administrative costs of healthcare organizations (including their teams’ training, salaries, and equipment maintenance) can be exorbitant, going as high as the price of some advanced healthcare devices. Outsourcing some of these tasks to healthcare BPO companies allows hospitals & other medical organizations to save large on operational costs (up to 60%) and utilize this fund strategically to improve their patient care processes.

●     Streamlining administrative operations

Despite having enough resources to provide top-notch patient care, healthcare professionals might not be able to devote much time and energy to offering the best treatment as they are preoccupied with managing administrative tasks. By outsourcing healthcare data support services to a reliable third party, healthcare organizations can invest more of their time in understanding their patients’ concerns to improve their offerings.

●     Lowering the scope for errors

The healthcare sector is a high-risk environment where even the smallest mistake can cost businesses their reputation, money, and patients. Healthcare BPOs have dedicated teams of professionals who utilize efficient QA processes and tools to reduce errors and handle patient records & information securely irrespective of the workload.

●     Enhancing patient engagement and satisfaction

Healthcare BPOs can provide round-the-clock support (or work in your timezone) to help patients access their information (test reports, appointment schedules, and other details) and seek help quickly with zero waiting time. Also, they can collect and analyze a wide range of healthcare data to help medical practitioners identify emerging health trends and improve patient care & satisfaction.

●     Lowering claim denials

Medical bills consisting of errors can lead to delays in claim processing and even to their denials. Healthcare BPOs have dedicated data analysts who identify and fix these errors efficiently and quickly to reduce claim denials.

One proven example of this is the case of a prominent US-based healthcare consultant who outsourced medical records cleaning and indexing services to a reliable BPO company based in India. By cleaning their data for billing errors and streamlining their indexing & log creation processes, the healthcare BPO service provider helped the organization to reduce their claims denial rate by up to 40% [Case study link].

Which tasks can be outsourced to healthcare BPO service providers?

Depending on their requirements, healthcare organizations can outsource a wide range of data support services to BPO companies. However, some of the most common/popular tasks that healthcare BPO service providers handle are:

  • Data entry & management – involves retrieving critical details from a variety of data sources and storing them in a centralized database/system for quick access.
  • Medical billing & coding – involves assigning codes to medical procedures and diagnoses that insurance companies can use to reimburse healthcare providers.
  • Claims processing – involves checking claims to verify if they qualify for reimbursements and processing them timely for improved patient care.
  • Medical transcriptions – involves converting voice recordings of medical reports into written text and proofreading them for identifying & fixing errors.
  • AR (accounts receivable) processing – involves submitting medical bills, following up on unpaid claims, patient billing, payment posting, and collections management to track and timely process invoices owed to healthcare organizations.
  • Customer support – involves promptly answering patient queries, resolving complaints, and providing support for insurance claims & other facilities.

Apart from them, healthcare organizations can also hire dedicated virtual assistants to streamline various tasks such as appointment management, market research, social media marketing, and competitor analysis.

How to choose the right outsourcing partner for healthcare BPO services – Factors to consider

While healthcare BPO services can benefit medical organizations and practitioners in several highlighted ways, choosing the right outsourcing partner requires a strategic approach to achieve the best results. Here are some key factors to consider when partnering with a healthcare BPO company:

  • Proven experience in the healthcare industry
  • Reputation in the market
  • Track record of successful project completions
  • Average turnaround time
  • Technological capabilities
  • Reviews & feedback from clients
  • Commitment to data quality and security
  • Pricing structure & payment terms
  • Modes of communications
  • Awards & recognitions
  • Availability to work in your time zone (global presence)

Healthcare BPO – The way to improve patient care

There is no denying the fact that healthcare BPO is the key to enhancing operational efficiency and improving patient care. When done right, it can deliver significant benefits to both patients and providers. Patients can experience shorter wait times, receive personalized assistance, and better access to services. Healthcare providers can streamline their administrative tasks, improve their operational efficiency, and focus on providing high-quality care.

Experts are predicting that rising trends like robotic process automation (RPA), telemedicine support, and blockchain for secure data sharing are further going to reshape the landscape of healthcare. By partnering with a reliable BPO service provider, healthcare organizations can keep up with these trends, gain a competitive advantage, and become the preferred choice for patients.