Creating the ideal patient financial journey

March 17, 2023

With the adoption of digital technologies and process automation, healthcare organizations can help transform payments to meet patient expectations.

In today’s complex healthcare environment, patients have become active healthcare consumers evaluating treatment options and weighing the costs. More than ever, patients expect the same cost transparency, and payment ease and flexibility they enjoy in other areas of their lives. Through adoption of digital technologies and process automation, healthcare organizations can transform payments to meet patient expectations.

The payments transformation landscape is evolving. During the recent HealthLeaders Revenue Cycle NOW Summit, Misty Grambow, Vice President of Healthcare and Non-Profit Solutions at U.S. Bank/Elavon, noted that payments transformation isn’t just about payments, patient experience, or security. It’s about how combining those elements can create the optimal patient experience while meeting provider needs.

Transformation enables healthcare systems meet business goals

Investing in payments transformation helps drive success for providers and patients by improving the patient financial experience, expediting accounts receivables, and boosting staff efficiency. In a recent survey with FT Longitude, 60 finance, treasury, and revenue management executives at US healthcare organizations shared insights about what payments transformation means for their patients and organizations. Here’s what we learned:

Digital options optimize payments and satisfaction for patients and providers

The consensus is clear. Fifty-nine percent of financial leaders across several sectors, including healthcare, agree that without transforming their current payment acceptance capabilities, they can’t improve consumer experience.

  • 72% of healthcare leaders see convenience as the top patient priority. They indicated both patients and staff want payment experiences that minimize complexity and maximize convenience. 
  • 48% of healthcare respondents believe convenience means providing digital payment methods that consumers already use in everyday life, including mobile devices and apps such as Apple Pay®1, Google Pay2, PayPal, and Venmo3.
  • 65% of healthcare leaders say that their organizations are exploring new ways to accept payments, such as PayPal and patient financing.
  • Embedding payment acceptance into patient portals can help meet consumer demand for convenience.  Regularly updated and enhanced portal payment acceptance helps ensure a one-stop experience that boosts speedier payments and patient satisfaction.

Top payment priorities for healthcare consumers according to our survey:

chart showing institutional loan volume rates

Adding affordable options while demystifying patient responsibilities

Successful digital engagement strategies also mean offering flexible payment options, including recurring payments, that make it easier for patients to cover high out-of-pocket costs. Our survey participants recognize that consumers want choices that make it easier to understand what they owe and less stressful to pay higher balances. 

  • 60% of healthcare leaders say affordability is the top patient priority when paying for treatment.
  • 63% of respondents believe easy payment options help patients pay account balances faster.
  • 35% of respondents say patients want a recurring payments option to spread out larger payments over time.  
  • 47% say patients want easy-to-understand billing statements without unwelcome billing surprises.

According to Misty Grambow, payments transformation creates a more positive financial experience by helping patients access their complete financial picture, pay bills more quickly, and get timely help clarifying the billing and payment process. The benefits of investing in payment transformation are real. Simplifying the patient billing processes increases the likelihood of timely payments and improves the overall patient experience.

 

Learn more about how we can help you transform payments to achieve business goals and create a better patient experience

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Disclosures

Start of disclosure content

Loan approval is subject to credit approval and program guidelines. Not all loan programs are available in all states for all loan amounts. Interest rates and program terms are subject to change without notice. Mortgage, home equity and credit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Deposit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Member FDIC.

1. Apple Pay is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.

2. Google Pay, Android and Google Play are trademarks of Google LLC

3. Venmo is a service of PayPal Inc., a licensed provider of money transfer services.