Aside from the obvious reason of introducing our company and products to you and anyone who happens upon this blog, we have a passion for a wider message. We believe that healthcare professionals deserve to be let in on a great secret. It’s a secret that has massive benefits for the financial health of their practices, and by extension, themselves.
If you’ve read this blog for any length of time you know the secret. If you are new here, that’s great! You won’t have to read a bunch of posts to get to the punch line. And here it is, the core of why we write this blog and why we are in business:
To provide the education and tools that enable businesses to use the power of placing credit cards on file for later use.
It’s that simple and yet packed with profound benefits for you and your practice. I want to list as many as I can for you. If we’ve ever written any blog post that draws all the benefits of card-on-file together into one summarized list; this is it. I encourage you to read through and see if your practice could solve some challenges by taking advantage of any of these. (The list is not necessarily in order of importance nor comprehensive)
- Eliminate Past Due Patient Payments. Here’s the deal. For every patient that places a card-on-file with your office (debit or credit) you eliminate past due payments. When you have a credit card and the consent to use it for outstanding balances, you can simply access that information and run the transaction. Balance Paid.
- Eliminate the Time and Cost of Collections. Again, for every patient that places a card-on-file, getting paid is simple. Just run the transaction and send a PAID statement. No sending of multiple statements, reminders, phone calls, dunning notices, etc. Why chase money after the patient has been treated when you can secure it before they see the doctor?
- Eliminate Write Offs and Third Party Collections. When in-house collection efforts fail, your practice will typically never see more than a fraction of the outstanding balance. In many cases, no more than 15% when all costs are calculated and everything is said and done. With card-on-file, only in the most extreme cases should you ever need to write off a balance. You have a way to be paid.
- Eliminate Check Handling. This may seem to be a minor issue. You’ve most likely been handling checks for the life of your practice. But think about it. What are the costs? You (or a third party) have to send the statement with the associated postal, paper, and man-hour costs. Then receive the payment in check form (hoping the patient pays on time), with the associated handling, posting, and deposit time (hoping that it doesn’t bounce). Trips to the bank take time, posting takes time. Card-on-file eliminates all this time and cost.
- Speed Cash Flow. For every patient who places a card-on-file, you get paid at EOB. This is typically 30 days before the typical patient gets around to paying the bill. And in many cases 60-120 days before. How do you get paid at EOB? Easy, you have the payment method in hand with the card-on-file. It’s as if the patient left an envelope of money with you and instructed you to take whatever they owe from it. All you need do is access the information (which should be securely held by your payment processor) and run the transaction. You are Paid!
- Keep Patients Returning. Patients with paid bills return to the doctor. Patients who owe the practice money often look to other doctors or put off treatment. Placing a card-on-file assures that the bill will be paid and they will have the peace of mind to schedule the next appointment.
- Provide Patient Convenience. Giving the patient the convenience (not to mention the free air miles) of using a credit card means they don’t need to worry about whether or not they paid the bill. They won’t need to be bogged down by the old routine of opening bills, writing checks, and then posting them back to you. The bill is simply taken care of.
- Provide Patient Options. Beyond the benefit of securing a one time payment from a patient, your office can use card-on-file to create automated recurring payments. You can set up payment plans that happen without another action on your part. Set them and forget them. This avoids the cost of monthly tracking of a manual list, contacting the patient, hoping they will send a check, and starting the whole collection cycle again. The cost savings of not having to track a list of invoices and promises-to-pay is huge.
- Save Time at the Front Desk. For every patient that places a card-on-file, co-pays and other payments that often happen at the front desk can be done without the patient having to dig out his or her payment card, swiping the card, printing a receipt, etc. A card-on-file enables the front desk personnel to access the card, process the payment, and email a receipt. A great time saver for busy offices.
- Take Control of when You Get Paid. When a patient places a card-on-file, a practice has their consent to use that card to process payments for any charge necessary. This needs to be communicated to the patient of course, but that’s not difficult. The fact is, with a card-on-file, the practice takes control of when they get paid. The patient relinquishes control of when he or she pays. This powerful truth could be the most important benefit of card-on-file. Having control of getting paid is the game changer for practices who implement card-on-file.
These are the primary benefits of card-on-file and why we are so passionate about spreading the news. Card-on-file will revolutionize your practice by saving costs, eliminating tasks, creating immediate cash flow, and reducing stress for your billing staff.
Our products go farther than card-on-file but card-on-file is our core and our passion. If card-on-file benefits aren’t enough for you, we can offer online payment portals, EMV processing, text-to-pay, email-to-pay, and many other options for getting paid. No matter what your patient payments challenge, we can probably find a way to help you out. Reach out to us for a no-pressure, no-obligation conversation. We would love to help you implement a card-on-file program to revolutionize your practice!