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Pediatric Practice Survival Checklist for COVID-19

Overview

We have prepared a pediatric practice survival checklist to help your practice survive the COVID-19 crisis. You want to come out of this stronger, and the OP team is committed to doing everything in our power to help you do just that.

This checklist includes the key items every practice should focus on in order to help your business financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, check the OP COVID-19 Help Page.

Pediatric Practice Survival Checklist

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Checklist Item
More Information
 Implement a Telehealth Solution

We have partnered with Anytime Pediatrics to provide our clients with a Telehealth solution that can be used for:

  • Acute visits
  • Chronic condition follow-up visits
  • Mental and behavioral health visits
  • Well visits (get prepared now so that you are ready when your payers begin to pay for this)

Most payers are liberalizing their Telehealth payment policies including paying for Telehealth services at parity with in-person visits. We advise that your review your individual payer policies--which are being updated often--but don't hesitate to give the care your families want and need by Telehealth. Give good care, follow best guidance, use our listserv communities and resources to understand billing nuances and then bill with confidence so that you are paid for your hard work. 


Email your Account Manager at solutions@officepracticum.com if you are interested in the Anytime Pediatrics solution or would like additional information.

 Understand what payers will pay you for during the crisisIt's important to know if your payers will be paying for: 
  • Telehealth acute visits
  • Telehealth well visits
  • Telephone calls handled by the provider(s)
  • Portal messaging (also called e-Visits)
  • Care management codes

Here are some payer-specific resources:

  • AHIP website: provides answers to a few payer-specific questions you may have.
  • PMI COVID-19 Business Impact Forum: includes payer-specific crowd-sourced information. Information varies by payer and changes frequently due to evolving national regulations. 
 Find revenueIt's time to find revenue in places that may not have mattered quite so much a few months ago. More than likely, you have revenue that you didn't capture and bill for over the past few months (note, you'll need to take into account timely filing guidelines that existed prior to the COVID-19 crisis. These may be relaxed at some point during this crisis period). You should look for the following unbilled items (click the links to learn how to go about doing this): 
 Work outstanding Accounts ReceivableGo work your outstanding A/R, and fight with the payers for what you are due (you might have time to sit on hold because you aren’t seeing patients).
 Consider billing helpOP has created COVID Billing Relief packages to help you through this time. If you need billing assistance, please reach out to solutions@officepracticum.com to discuss various packages, contract length, and your specific needs. Costs are a percentage of dollars collected, so rather than paying salaries, you are paying a small percentage of what is collected for you. This could help with cash flow during a time of varying collections.
 Perform patient recallsRecall your overdue patients for chronic conditions and perform a Telehealth visit. Click on the links below to see how to perform recalls for each of these conditions:

OP Notify is a patient communication tool that enables you to notify patients of visits/encounters and to recall patients into your office. In this time of crisis, it is even more important to reach out to your patients, recall patients for services, and schedule them for the safest and most appropriate place for care which may be Telehealth, your office, a parking lot, or home visit. Let us help you find a solution, which you can use to continue to connect with your patients for scheduled or needed services.

 Review Phone MessagesLook for payable work that may have been performed in the past few weeks. Click on the link below to see how to do this:

OP is working on a solution that will enable you to track these for reimbursement. We'll be adding fields to allow you to classify these for payment. More to come on this soon-to-be released feature. 

 Apply for an SBA LoanContact your local bank if you have a relationship with their small business department, and apply for an SBA loan. If you don't have a relationship with a bank, start on the government website. You are likely eligible for some type of disaster assistance and a portion may be completely forgiven without payment or interest. For many of practices, this will help with payroll, rent, utilities, and insurance payments for an eight-week period. That's essentially free money with little strings attached (based on retaining your staff and paying them).
 Look at anticipated paymentsThe Anticipated Payment SQL will estimate what your payments will be in light of any reductions to your charges. Once reviewed, the next exercise involves looking forward to anticipating future cash needs.

Here is a calculation, presented by PMI's Paul Vanchiere in his 4/2/2020 webinar, to help you anticipate your visit volume today to ensure you have the cash you need in three weeks:


Revenue needed weekly / Revised Revenue Per Visit = number of weekly visits needed to provide the needed cash flow 

(accounting for reduced ancillary and vaccine revenue)

For example: If you need $10,000 per week for three weeks, the formula will look like this: 

$10,000 / $95 = 105 Weekly Visits (21 per day)

 Compare this time period to the same time period last yearA way to understand how the crisis has impacted your patient volumes is to compare to last year's performance. Since your business varies over the months, look back to the same period of time a year ago (this way you are comparing apples to apples). Learn how to keep the pulse on your reduction of visits in this article: Compare 2019 to 2020 week-by-week visits.
 Fill the calendarUse this time to reach out to your parents and get well visits on your calendar for the summer. Remind them that with the COVID-19 crunch, your summer will fill up fast and you want to ensure that their children are receiving their well visits. Filling your calendar with summer well visits will provide you a steady income on the recovery side.

To help you with visits during this time, we've rolled out Curbside Arrival (as of version 20.0.17). This solution facilitates automated text communications between families and the office, allowing patients/parents to "announce" their arrival at the office from the safety of their own cars. Many of you are either currently seeing or planning to see patients in cars. The Release Notes can be found here.