Your surgery center partners have significant investments in equipment and need your help in achieving their revenue targets as well. Understand that clearly and follow these steps.
- Book a block time (if possible)
Surgery scheduling is all about project management.
While you are coordinating with your surgery patients, you should be coordinating with the surgery center or hospital about the block of time (unless your surgeons have pre-allocated block times already).
- Provide best case, worst case, most likely surgery counts
Do not overbook and underdeliver. You cannot promise 30 patients, get a block time for your surgeon and show up with 10 patients.
When you book a surgery list with your ambulatory surgery center partner or your hospital partner, make sure you that at least 90% of your surgery candidates will show up.
I have found that giving my surgery partners a “best case”, “worst case” and “most likely” number work beautifully.
- Complete payment guarantees
Make sure you finish the prior authorizations (after pre-certification). If there’s a denial, make sure the patient knows it.
Either the payer promised to pay (i.e you got the prior authorization).
Or, the patient promised to pay (self-pay patients). If the patient is paying, have them put the deposit down. This is a great way to reduce chances of the patient being a no-show.
- Complete surgery pre-requisites
Once payment guarantee is cleared, you have to get the surgery / medical clearance done.
This could involve the primary care physician alone or might include other care providers based on the surgery candidate’s medical history.
Once the clearances are done, you have to make sure the COVID test is scheduled as well.
- Confirm surgery booking with the ASC
Until all the surgery prerequisite steps have been met, the surgery cannot be confirmed from your side.
As soon as the pre-requisites are done (sans COVID test results), let your surgery center know that the surgeries are good to be “confirmed”.
- Submit ALL surgery information (surgery packet) in one shot
Make sure that you do not submit one piece of information at a time.
Your surgery partner will expect an entire surgery packet from you – send the entire surgery packet together, in one shot and always keep your surgery partner up to date on the latest status of the patient.
- Submit all lab and diagnostic results
Any laboratory/diagnostic test results and all medical clearance documentation should be submitted to the surgery department beforehand.
This helps to avoid repeating procedures and therefore saving time + money.
- Follow up with patient every 3-4 days
Follow up with the patient constantly so they don’t cancel nor back out. Bake this into your surgery scheduling process as an integral step.
The better your surgery no-show rates are, the more advantageous block times your surgeons get. Over time, we have noticed that some ASCs end up dropping some associated surgical partners because of the no show and cancellation rates.