Business Solutions

Outsourcing Options

There are a number of companies offering outsourced business services of one type or another in the HME industry. As providers realize that they need to cast off some of the functions that are not essential business functions, that group is likely to expand.

That’s especially true as providers reconsider what they define as an essential business function. For instance, some providers will want to continue to engage in their own equipment maintenance and repair, but other providersmight see a possibility to off-load that to an outsourcer that meets the
necessary care, quality and funding standards. As the nature of the business changes, so too will the role that outsourcers play in HME.

Currently, many of the services are financial based, particularly billing related, but there are also other services designed to help them run other more care- or equipment-related aspects of their businesses.

Here’s a sampling of some of the offerings available to providers:

ACU-ServeACU-Serve Co.
www.acuservecorp.com
ACU-Serve is a billing services company geared to help mid-sized and larger HME businesses fully outsource their billing. Participating in the industry since 1994, the firm provides staffing; Medicare, Medicaid and private payor reimbursement expertise; and employs a web-based billing solution that incorporates support for various HME provider management platforms. In terms of product category experience and expertise, the firm has processed claims for various DME items including oxygen and respiratory; CPAP; enteral prenentral equipment; infusion and infusion pumps; mobility equipment and diabetic supplies and shoes.

A/R AllegianceA/R Allegiance Group LLC
www.arallegiance.com
Founded in 2005, A/R Allegiance offers technology-powered collection services to help providers collect private payor funding. Some noteworthy features; COLLECTPlus, a private-pay billing and collection system helps HME providers manage their accounts receivable efforts and provides an electronic dashboard to help them stay apprised of those efforts. CollectPayLIVE gives patients the option to securely pay online through a provider’s website. Patients can make partial or full payment using their credit card or establish recurring payments for a nominal processing fee to the patient.

DME EvalumateDME Evalumate
www.dmeevalumate.com
DME Evalumate offers solutions to help providers contend with the documentation needs presented by CMS’s Medicare audits and the Prior Authorization Project for power mobility. DMEevalumate.com provides an online program that compares a practitioner’s answers to the patient’s exam with the Medicare coverage criteria. Using that information, the program determines the DME for which the patient qualifies. If DMEevalumate.com confirms that the medical justification for the requested equipment has been met, it then generates the appropriate detailed written order (seven element order) and face-to-face evaluation, in the correct format.

Invacare Corp.Invacare Corp.
www.invacare.com
DME manufacturing giant Invacare offers a number of outsourced services to HME businesses, such as equipment maintenance through its 5 Star and Roadrunner service programs, which provide both set up and equipment maintenance for providers. Working with software partner Brightree (www.brightree), Invacare offers software services, and Invacare Homecare Collection Services, provides billing and A/R services including patient receivable management and invoice and statement mailing services. For sleep providers, Invacare offers CPAP re-supply management through its Sleep Success Services to help determine when patients are due for new supplies and process the orders and fulfillment.

MedFORCEMedFORCE Technologies
www.medorcetech.com
While known as a provider of paperless office and document scanning and management systems, MedFORCE also offers a tool for helping providers handle prior authorization and documentation requests called ZipMit. It helps providers electronically submit PMD Prior Auth Requests and submit documentation requested by RAC, MAC, PERM and ZPIC audits. With ZipMit, HME providers gather their documents required and submit electronically. Once the submitted information has been received and processed, they receive an acknowledgement and they will be able to track its status.

Strategic ARStrategic AR
www.strategicar.com
Using the motto, “Eat gum; get paid,” Strategic AR provides a tunrkey patient-pay billing and collections service for HME providers. The service completely off-loads the collections process and then provides HME businesses with web-based reporting tools to help them monitor the collections process and keep tabs on how their patients are keeping up with their payments to the provider. Provider management can look at a complete overview or drill-down to specific patients if need be. On the patient side, Strategic AR sends clients simplified bills and invoices that help encourage them to pay on time, and appear to come from the HME business to help reinforce the patient relationship.

In addition to this sampling of outsourcing services available to providers, it’s worth noting that some other key offerings include training services from firms such as DMETrain (www.dmetrain.com), as well as member services organizations, such as the VGM Group (www.vgm.com) and The MED Group (www.medgroup.com), which while not classic outsourcers, offer training and financial services which can help providers significantly off-load their employee development, as well as insurance and other business needs.

This article originally appeared in the August 2013 issue of HME Business.

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