All practices need a system for billing and tracking their income. You really cannot do without it. I know…we tried to use regular accounting software (Quick Books), but it just can’t do what you need it to do. Not in the arena of practice management anyway. And a spread sheet just can’t cut it.
There are many billing and practice management programs on the market (MediSoft and Lytec to name just two popular ones). They run from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand and up. Some EMR’s programs have them included in the program. A nice bonus, but one that is not yet available to me with Amazing Charts (though it’s coming sometime this year).
Enter Office Ally. I have been using them for electronic billing since I started doing the billing myself (another long story for a different post). Well, Office Ally announced their practice management module and I’ve just started using it. it’s called Practice Mate so I can only give you a preliminary report.
One of the things I like about it, is that once my patient is set up, it’s easy to create a visit and bill. I can post to that patient, and when payment comes in I can post all the different payments we receive. I’ll be able to keep track of which insurance, which secondary, who is outstanding etc. It will even print out my bills for mailing out. There is also a scheduler – though I’m using the one that is with Amazing Charts. Oh yes…Office Ally will be coming out with their own EMR system sometime this year.
So…what does this cost? Nothing. Well sorta. Office Ally is free to providers (the insurers pick up the fee) unless more than 50% of your submissions for billing are Medicare/Medicaid. Then the fee is $20.00 per month. That much less than most clearing houses. Right now there are only two carriers I cannot bill through their electronic system…and one of those is coming online soon. Practice Mate is free as well. I understand the EMR system, which will make this a complete package will be somewhere along the range of $20.00 per month.
There are so many cost that are part of start up…this does not have to be one of them.