July 22, 2008 (Nashville, Tenn.) --- nTelagent, Inc. and Social Service Coordinators, Inc. (SSC) have announced a strategic partnership to ensure that every eligible healthcare patient receives the appropriate social services benefits. SSC provides education and assistance to individuals enrolling in federal, state and local social programs. SSC also provides ongoing support to help those individuals retain the benefits for which they are eligible.
nTelagent enables healthcare service providers to revolutionize the way they communicate with both insured and uninsured patients by providing real-time, interactive scripting pre-service and at the point of service. The company’s Self-Pay Management System (SPMS) assists providers in identifying those individuals who need and potentially qualify for financial assistance. Through nTelagent’s relationship with SSC, patients not having resources to pay their healthcare costs can now be screened for local, state and government eligibility programs.
“Inconsistencies in charity care policies will continue to grow as the uninsured and underinsured populations rise,“ says Alan R. Flaumenhaft, founder and CEO of SSC “This partnership with nTelagent will dramatically benefit these patients and their providers. Patients can now be screened through an online interface at the point of service. Within 48 hours, the provider receives a response from SSC regarding the patient’s potential qualification for eligibility programs.” SSC then follows up with the patient to ensure appropriate documentation is obtained and completed.
“Healthcare providers lose thousands of dollars each year due to missed opportunities in helping patients identify assistance programs,” says Earl T. Winter, founder, chairman and CEO of nTelagent. “Patients who qualify for assistance are many times overlooked, considered charity, or written off as bad debt. With the SPMS technology integrated with SSC’s resources and experience, these patients will now receive the help they are entitled to and healthcare providers will handle patient accounts in a more appropriate manner. ”
According to a recent nTelagent study of over 40 healthcare providers’ aged trial balance (ATB) reports, 50% of the patient accounts that were written off as bad debt showed a capacity to pay. An additional 17% of patient accounts that were written off as bad debt had been classified as having low household income and/or low net worth. This indicates that they could have been evaluated for government assistance programs or charity care processing, but were not.
In most healthcare environments, determining opportunities for assistance for every needy patient is difficult due to: timing of patient treatment, inadequate staffing levels to see every patient and lack of patient understanding in providing the necessary information to obtain assistance. Healthcare providers often write off such cases as "bad debt" or "charity care," a policy that has been accepted as standard practice in place of a more proactive approach: helping these patients obtain financial assistance and, in doing so, increasing providers' net revenue.
The nTelagent-SSC partnership enables nTelagent’s Self-Pay Management System to provide the following core offerings related to social services eligibility:
- Eliminates inconsistencies in choice of accounts to be reviewed for assistance
- Offers assistance to all patients meeting income guidelines through SPMS processing
- Allows healthcare providers to offer community benefits on a consistent basis through assisting patients in understanding their choices
- Reduces turnaround time for approvals and notifications to healthcare providers
- Assists providers in meeting required application filing guidelines
- Provides consistency in application of charity care for those who do not qualify for assistance
- Reduces outstanding days in accounts receivable due to pending eligibility status
About nTelagent, Inc.
Nashville-based nTelagent, Inc., a next-generation revenue cycle company, has developed a proprietary technology platform, the Self-Pay Management System (SPMS), that is revolutionizing the accounts receivable processes for hospitals, physician practices and all other healthcare service providers, in both inpatient and outpatient settings. For providers, SPMS improves upfront and overall cash flow, receivables and profitability by reducing bad debt and improving the revenue cycle process for self-pay patients. The company’s turnkey technologies enable providers to consistently move workflow to the front end of the revenue cycle, both pre-service and at the point of service. Using non-credit scoring data, the SPMS provides registrars and financial counselors with interactive scripts that integrate patient demographic information with each provider’s unique business policies and rules. The system also automatically identifies discounting and charity care options when applicable, ensuring that patient financial accounting -- for both insured and uninsured patients -- is handled appropriately and in a non-discriminatory manner. Visit www.ntelagent.com for more information.
About Social Service Coordinators, Inc. (SSC)
As a private social service organization serving the managed Medicare and Medicaid industry, SSC is committed to helping eligible individuals receive the social program benefits to which they are entitled. By working in partnership with state and federal agencies, SSC ensures compliant and effective outreach and advocacy. SSC has two divisions, one serving Medicare HMO plans and the other serving Medicaid HMO populations. Through targeted identification of eligible individuals and expert outreach, SSC is able to reach the most financially exposed members of our customer health plans. As the market leader in maximizing participation in social programs, SSC improves the quality of life of our clients while providing a valuable service to our business partners. To ensure continued success, SSC provides effective and ethical outreach and advocacy services by fostering a culture built on integrity, education, technology and innovation. At the core of the organization’s values is a commitment to preserving the dignity and trust of its beneficiaries. Visit www.sscincorporated.com
for more information.