Patient Collections: How to connect to (and collect from) Millennials
We can’t state this in clearer terms: The ability to identify Millennials who qualify for government, regional, and hospital-based programs is becoming massively important in collecting Medicaid and other program dollars while mitigating extensive patient collections.
More and more often we talk to Millennials about a medical bill only to find that the recent graduate on the other end of the phone could qualify for Medicaid, and 90 days into the revenue cycle we are just starting an enrollment process.
What about the ACA as an option, you ask? Millennials have given up on it! It’s not that they don’t understand the law. In truth they are hyper-connected and very aware that the maximum enforceable penalty is only up to 1% of their income. With 7-in-10 recent graduates having nearly $30,000 in educational debt, and with Millennials representing 40% of the unemployment population, their priority is not healthcare.
So, how do we connect them to our collection strategies? Flip the model on its head!
Let’s start looking at connection strategies rather than collections strategies. Once the patient is on-site, informed consent becomes key. As we all know, Millennials want engagement Twitter-style – in 140 characters or less.
By making sure that information – including cell phone number, and email address – is collected upon initial contact, we allow for connection opportunities. This is the generation who lives by “there’s an app for that”, so quite literally, identifying an app that includes an immediate recognition of informed consent could allow for connection in 140 characters or less via text messaging.
In addition, emails can be key when guiding a millennial patient through an enrollment and determination process. The immediate acknowledgement of informed consent allows for further follow-up or preemptive contact with patients regarding potential assistance linkage.
This could also lead to pre-visit questioning regarding non-HIPAA intrusive information and result in paperwork completion prior to a patient’s arrival. Managing patient paperwork and time will create heightened patient satisfaction and cooperation throughout the government program enrollment and determination process.
The bottom line? Information collection drives Millennial connection.