Cash flow problems are an issue for many organizations as consumer-directed health plans become more popular. These CDHPs are increasingly popular, but require patients to cover costs until they met a deductible. This means that hospitals and private practices may have difficult acquiring payment without skilled training ahead of time. Using electronic health records and modern medical billing and coding practices can make it easier for these health care providers to get payment quickly and easily. This will allow better support for patients as well as staff in the hospital, because better communication will facilitate stronger care and less tense situations where someone is just handed a bill. Of course, there are other ways of getting money, like in reporting high quality data, as is the case with certain rehab facilities that are being offered incentives for strong information reporting. However, the need for patients to pay for services they ask for cannot be overstated. 

Tips for better payment collection
Working with your front-end staff is the single most crucial part of acquiring payment. Staff should be trained to confirm a patient's coverage, copays and deductibles. At the very least, they should know if a deductible has been met. The more information that a company can have, the better off they are with regard to acquiring payment from a patient. All staff should have knowledge of what networks the clinic is covered by so that most patient questions can be readily answered.

Similarly, offering many payment options can help people to cover their bills and pay back a provider sooner. Allowing them to use credit or debit cards, monthly billing, or online patient portals can make it much  easier for patients to pay back on time. Using retail practices in this way to make health care more friendly to consumers lets you get more from them without having patients succumb to sticker shock.

Alternate methods of securing funding
A new policy by Medicare will get allow inpatient rehab facilities to see a 1.7 percent rate increase. However, this is only if they are able to submit new data on health care. While this may seem difficult, it will be made much easier with the application of easy to use data service or electronic health record system. This could enable a company to implement a comprehensive data tracking policy, ideally leading to better data quality on the whole of the organization. Randomly selected providers have recently had to beat a 75 percent data accuracy threshold in order to pass and avoid a reduction in payments, but this number may change for the higher or lower when everyone has to pass.

No matter how a provider gets its money, its EHR system and medical billing and coding software can be involved. Add​ ons that allow for user-updated or curated information can make it easier for them to fix data within the system. Similarly, an EHR that has a web portal could accept user payments through a web site, allowing people to pay for their medical bills in the comfort of their own homes. Or, patient data could be entered on a tablet at at the clinic, eliminating the need to ask them to pull their card out again in any of the part of the process. By storing numbers on-site, a health care provider makes it easier for the visit to be about the care, not the cost, and make that part of the transaction as seamless and painless as possible. Using automated systems to move beyond awkward negotiations or difficult moments as patients recover from the stick shock of medical treatment can be an ideal way to introduce a more casual atmosphere into the front desk of a practice.