Accounts Receivable: Where Cash Flow Goes to Die
Have you checked your Accounts Receivable lately? You should, especially during a recession.
To be clear, Accounts Receivable refers to what PATIENTS owe YOU. If you want profit, you MUST know what your patients owe, and how you’re going to get that money.
We understand that you want to maintain good relationships with patients and don’t want to hound them about money. It’s ok to have a kind heart and tell your patients “don’t worry about how you’ll pay.” At the end of the day however, you need their money to keep doing what you’re doing.
To make sure your collection percentages are good, make sure to keep an eye on Accounts Receivable and contact anyone with outstanding balances. Get a system in place to contact patients about paying their bills on time. If you’re using a collection agency, make sure you know how they follow-up with your patients and ensure it’s with the attitude you want and it gets you results.
If you can, collect on the day of service. The longer you wait, the less money you’re likely to collect. Set a policy that any outstanding balances over 120 days is sent to a collection agency. Keep in mind that you’ll probably only collect 50% after that 120 day mark, this way, you’ll give yourself a deadline to collect yourself. Anything over the 120 days is not likely to be paid in full, so get on top of your receivables!