3 Ways to Collect Money Past 120 Days
One issue that providers have once they revise their collections strategies is trying to get that money that has aged past 120 days. This money is old and the patients that are responsible for this money, most likely, have terminated treatment and moved forward.
This makes collecting this outstanding amount very difficult. The grim reality of the situation is, is that most of this money will most likely be written off.
However, there are strategies that you can employ that will increase your likelihood of recovering some, or sometimes, most of this money.
1. Have a Collections Process
It is easier to get a task done if there is a process or procedure. That is why thinking ahead and planning for this situation is in your best interest. Think about how you can have a multi-step procedure that will allow you to get paid for the outstanding money.
Collections processes usually go something like this:
Call the patient
Send an invoice
Email the patient
Call the patient
Send an invoice with a collections notice
Send account to a collections agency
This process allows multiple touch points and creates a "squeaky wheel" type situation. Hopefully, you will get the grease in the end.
2. Set-Up Payments Plans
One reason why patients tend to not pay the amount past 120 days is because of financial hardship. These amounts tend to stack-up and are large. It is not uncommon to have a single patient owe up to $5,000.00.
The best way to handle this situation is to create a payment plan for these patients that allows them to pay the money over a period of time. That way they are more likely to pay, and they can budget for the expense every month.
3. Contract with a Collections Agency
Unfortunately, there are some patients that will refuse to pay. If this is the case, the best (and most uncomfortable) course of action is to contract with a collections agency to ensure you get paid.
Usually, this is the last and final step in a collections process. The agency will usually take a percentage of the money collected and your patient will likely not return for treatment. However, it is important to get paid for services rendered.
There are many ways in which you can prevent having to contract a collections agency. Set-up procedures, take payment at the door, and ensure that no accounts receivables go past a certain amount. With these preventive measures in place, you can ensure you are paid every penny for services rendered.