Templates to use in Debt Collection

Posted on August 30, 2022 by Kylene Coate

According to the United States Census Bureau data, 19% of American households had medical bills they couldn’t pay for right away. The median debt is $2000 — however, only 39% of Americans have sufficient savings to cover an unexpected $1000 expense.

Why is this important?

With these figures, it becomes clear that medical collections are a critical issue faced by practices across the nation. Around 22% of medical practices have at least 10% of patient accounts with bad debt tied to them.

This means that your team can spend three months chasing down payments. As a result, your practice is deprived of income, and your team isn’t spending time on tasks that could bring more patients and revenue into your office.

You can report the debt to a credit reporting agency after a period of 365 days from date of first delinquency has lapsed. Effective March of 2023, a minimum balance of $500.00 is required before an agency can furnish data of the debt to a NCRA (National Credit Reporting Agency). However, when collecting debt, even medical debt, there are regulations you must follow. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) enforces the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), which prohibits organizations from using unfair, abusive, or deceptive practices while collecting debts.

To comply with these regulations your letter communications must include specific information, including:

  • How much money is owed
  • The name of the original creditor
  • How to get the name of the original creditor
  • What to do if the patient doesn’t think it’s their debt

While this doesn’t seem like a lot of information, gathering the details and submitting the reports can be time-consuming.

Use templates to increase efficiency

One way to reduce the amount of time needed to submit these reports is to use a template. Programs like Microsoft Excel have templates for tracking patients’ bills, insurance payments, copayments, and outstanding balances. Or you could download templates online from eForms or TemplateRoller.

Anytime Collect offers templates for your first, second, and third collection letters as well as the final letter and Notice of Legal Action.

The templates include fields for all the information you need to include at each point of contact. For example:

  • Invoice number and date
  • Days past due
  • Amount due
  • Note previous attempts to collect
  • Summary of account
  • Instructions
  • Due date for payment
  • Your contact information

Consider KeyBridge Medical Revenue Care™

KeyBridge Medical Revenue Care specializes in medical debt collection. Unlike other collection agencies, KeyBridge Medical Revenue Care works as your partner, offering a revenue management suite as well as hands-on support from a team of carefully trained debt management professionals.

KeyBridge Medical Revenue Care believes in creating a patient-focused healthcare culture to improve the patient experience and limit the percentage of patient accounts that go into bad debt. Your practice benefits in several ways. KeyBridge Medical Revenue Care offers Master Classes in creating a healthcare culture with employee engagement. Your team’s overall satisfaction improves, and that positive attitude and experience spread to your patients like wildfire.

As your patient satisfaction increases, they’re more likely to pay their bills at the time of services or soon after receiving a statement of outstanding costs after the insurance payments are applied.

References:

https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/debt-collection-faqs

https://www.experian.com/blogs/ask-experian/credit-education/report-basics/how-and-when-collections-are-removed-from-a-credit-report/

http://unitedobligations.com/what-information-does-a-debt-collection-agency-need/

https://www.bankrate.com/banking/savings/financial-security-january-2021/

https://www.census.gov/library/stories/2021/04/who-had-medical-debt-in-united-states.html

https://www.medicaleconomics.com/view/practices-dealing-bad-debt-patients-struggle-medical-bills-study-shows

https://anytimecollect.com/blog/collections-letter-templates/

https://www.templateroller.com/template/40583/debt-collection-report-template.html

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