Shape Divider - Style fan_opacity
Medical Claim Denials Up 23% Since 2016, Up 11% Since COVID
Vast Majority of Denied Claims Are Avoidable
Medical claim denials have increased by 23% over the last four years, according to the latest Healthcare Revenue Cycle Denials Index. The analysis examined more than 102 million claims submitted by 1,500 U.S. hospitals.
Since the onset of the COVID pandemic last year, claim denials have climbed by 11% nationally. The highest denial rates were concentrated in the two regions hardest hit by the outbreak – the Pacific Coast and the Northeast.
Failure to Obtain Pre-Certification
Failure to obtain authorization prior to treatment was one of the top reasons for claim denial, according to the AHA survey. It is essential that staff members responsible for submitting insurance claims be highly knowledgeable of which insurance carriers require pre-authorization for which treatments.
An American Medical Association (AMA) survey also found that 86% of physicians’ offices rate the burden of pre-certification as “high” or “extremely high.” On average, these offices devote two business days per week just to addressing prior authorizations.
Another common mistake that leads to claim denials is providing inadequate information to the insurance company. Omitting even the smallest detail (such as treatment date, date of onset or demographic information) can result in an unpayable claim.
Using incorrect codes or referring to an obsolete codebook occurs far too often, resulting in claim denials and revenue loss.
In addition, proper documentation must be present when coding and submitting claims. Otherwise, insurance carriers will assume that the services were not performed.
--Article Continues Below--
Duplicate claims can occur when a staff member neglects to remove a claim from the patient’s account after it has been resubmitted. Most claims processing systems can detect and flag duplicates. If the original claim appears as a duplicate, it could result in a claim denial.
Which means simply preventing duplicate claims is not enough. Original claims must be properly coded with the required modifiers and documentation in order to identify the bill as an original and not a duplicate.
Even legitimate and properly coded claims can being denied if not submitted in a timely manner. For instance, the deadline window for submitting Medicare claims was reduced by the Affordable Care Act to 12 months after the date of service. (It had previously been 15-27 months.)
What’s more, filing deadlines vary between insurance carriers. Failure to meet these defined deadlines can result in some serious revenue loss.
Failure to Verify Coverage
Healthcare insurance is changing all the time. Which means eligibility must be verified every time services are provided. Tedious? Yes. But it could save your practice a substantial amount of money down the line.
The Answer? Partner with RFS!
By partnering with Reliant Financial Services, you greatly minimize your risk for denied medical claims. Our comprehensive Insurance Services program includes all aspects of the medical claims process, including government reimbursement, Workers’ Comp, medical claim denial follow-up services, and denied claim resolution.
We make sure medical claims don't fall through the cracks and end up being denied for avoidable issues. And we'll continue to follow up on all denied claims until they're resolved.
2150 Lelaray Street
Colorado Springs, CO 80909
P.O. Box 140
Colorado Springs, CO 80901