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August 3, 2016

Three Additional Healthcare Providers Implement CarePayment to Help Patients Manage Medical Bills

By CarePayment

LAKE OSWEGO, OR (August 3, 2016) – The shift to high deductible health plans (HDHPs) has increased patient financial responsibility, which means many individuals and families have problems paying medical bills. In order to deal with the financial strain unpaid bills place on healthcare providers and their patients, a growing number of hospitals around the country have turned to CarePayment to help manage their own receivables while also assisting patients in managing their out-of-pocket healthcare costs.

Available at more than 700 medical facilities across the United States, CarePayment patient financing programs feature flexible open-end lines of credit that allow patients to manage their accounts in a variety of convenient ways, including automatic payments, mobile and online account access, and paper or electronic statements. The number of hospital facilities, physician clinics, and other healthcare provider locations offering CarePayment has more than tripled in the last three years.

Healthcare providers that have recently implemented the program include:

• Central Florida Health Alliance, Leesburg, Florida
Eisenhower Medical Center, Rancho Mirage, California
• Monongahela Valley Hospital, Monongahela, Pennsylvania

These providers have integrated CarePayment throughout the revenue cycle where the program is an option before or after service, and as a patient-friendly alternative during the billing cycle. By structuring term lengths that vary based on the size of the patient’s balance, providers can offer the right plan for every patient.

“The number one reason patients routinely cancel procedures these days is because they can’t afford to pay the deductible or co-insurance. With so many patients facing this issue, we teamed up with CarePayment to add affordable financing alternatives,” says Louis J. Panza Jr., president and CEO, Monongahela Valley Hospital. “The CarePayment initiative is designed for people who otherwise might decline a procedure, due to costs.”

“Even with basic health insurance, the cost of medical care continues to be a problem for a significant number of American families,” said Craig Hodges, CEO of CarePayment. “Research has shown that 35% of American adults are burdened with medical debt, and the inability to get payment for services rendered places a tremendous financial burden on the hospitals that serve them.”

One market-based solution to this problem is for third-party organizations to provide regulatory compliant financing programs. A recent article in the Journal of Health Care Finance outlined an exploratory study of CarePayment outcomes based on interviews with hospital staff. The study represents the first independent outcome evaluation of this patient financing mechanism in the U.S. All participating hospitals reported positive results from having CarePayment manage bill-payment plans for patients, with multiple interviewees citing the competitive advantage the program gives their institutions. The article concluded that bad debt and payment collection challenges are likely to remain important problems for U.S. hospitals and suggests that hospital administrators consider such programs to improve payment collection efficiency and patient satisfaction to benefit both the bottom line and overall patient care.