It's simply a matter of resource planning. With increasing medical costs and regulations severely challenging profits, where do you allocate your operating budget dollars to obtain the best ROI?
Your facility may be accustomed to enduring the salaries, benefits and overhead costs of an in-house coding department. It's always been a part of your healthcare business culture.
However, coding, like any other healthcare specialty, has become more complicated and requires more expertise—especially with the onset of ICD-10, which necessitates the expense of more training or acquiring more high-priced, expert, ICD-10-qualified coders for in-house departments.
Right now, in-house coding departments are frantically undergoing all the above dynamics in order to meet the ICD-10 October conversion deadline. In the process, they are expected to suffer up to a 50% loss in coding productivity. That means fewer charts coded, more rejections by insurance carriers and a dramatic interruption to their compensation cash flow.
Also, in-house departments may see attrition in their coder ranks due to the increased complexities and pressures of ICD-10. And this ICD iteration is far from being the last; ICD-11 is already on the radar screen. Each iteration means more training and loss of productivity—at your expense.
Is your legacy investment in an in-house coding department still a wise investment in your institution's present business model?
By outsourcing you'd have trained, high-quality ICD-10 coders on a guaranteed, available-as-needed basis. No training expense, no full-time-employee-plus-benefits expense, no loss-of-productivity expense. You'd drastically reduce your coding overhead, improve productivity and retain or even enhance your cash flow. So why not examine the possibility of outsourcing?
Most HIMs have a fierce loyalty to their coding staff. They've often formed their coding departments from the start. It's difficult for them to think of restructuring and outsourcing, even if it makes better business sense. Putting those long-time in-house coders out of work? No way!
A hospital's CFO may recognize the financial wisdom of outsourced coding, but he or she doesn't want to incur the political blowback from the HIM director, whose department may be decimated.
Can't we all get along?
KIWI-TEK's outsourcing approach takes into consideration both the CFO's and HIM's position on this touchy subject. We alleviate displacing competent, qualified,in-house coders by hiring them at often substantially higher salaries and benefits, with full-time employment opportunities. They must first pass our certification standards, which should be no problem for a quality coder.
All things considered, if ever there were a time you should realistically examine outsourced coding, this is it.
For more information on why KIWI-TEK has become the leading outsourced coding supplier go to www.KIWI-TEK.com or call (317) 571-3440.Subscribe to our blog