3 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Hire a Biller for Your Private Practice

hire a biller for your private practice

The excitement of deciding to go into business for yourself is like no other feeling. You’re thinking of the problem you’ll solve for your community, the freedom you’ll have to do it your way, and the profits that will allow you to support your lifestyle. You also know that there are several ways to make income in this field. Because you want to make your services accessible, you decide to become an insurance provider. But wait. You don’t know the first thing about working with insurance. Solution? You’ll just hire a biller for your practice on day one.

Wise choice; wrong time.

When choosing to hire a biller immediately, you ignore the opportunity cost at a time when it’s most affordable. During this time, you will have a low caseload and admin requirements, which offers the greatest potential and time for learning important tasks. In the initial stages of building a practice, you can afford the time spent creating processes and procedures that will be the foundation of your business’ future. This is especially true when there are tons of resources available to teach you how to do these things step-by-step. When you skip the opportunity and hand these tasks over to another too early, you place your business at the mercy of another.

Billers are absolutely needed in cases where you are needing to manage multiple therapists’ claims, but not while building a caseload. If you must hire a biller for your private practice immediately, here are 3 questions you should ask yourself:

1. How much do you already know?

If provided with an in-depth description of tasks a biller is responsible for, if you don’t know how to do those tasks yourself, would you even know what this looks like when done incorrectly? This stage of private practice is a prime time to learn the ins and outs of the billing process. If you decided to hire a biller for your practice right away, how will you know when claims are being denied should actually be paid?

2. Can you catch mistakes?

The number one reason you hire a biller is to deal with those insurance companies that are more difficult to interact with. Some billers will pick the low hanging fruit and tell you the others just can’t be reached. It’s not because the claim is not payable, but because the claim may require additional steps the biller doesn’t want to invest time in.

Remember, most billers are paid on commission. If they have claims that can be paid by one click, why would they invest time in another that requires more work?

3. What will you do if your biller disappears?

The biller is the most powerful position in your practice. This person’s work ensures your lights stay on, there is food on the table, and you appear financially transparent to your clients and employees.

If you immediately hire a biller for your private practice, and they disappeared tomorrow, do you know where to pick up?

It’s easy to spot a qualified biller when you already know and understand that person’s responsibilities because you have been doing it skillfully yourself. If you hire a biller without having your own experience, remember this: You don’t know what you don’t know.

ASHA provides a great deal of information throughout the pages of their website, but if you don’t want to spend time organizing and deciphering what’s there, the Billing & Coding SLP™ is a curriculum written by an SLP for SLPs to ensure success when navigating insurance in private practice, in a linear fashion, from credentialing to documentation and everything in between.

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