Mention the words insurance reimbursement in a group of chiropractors and, I’m sure, there’s going to be more than just one with a horror story of their experience in getting paid from insurance companies. This month’s issue of The American Chiropractor will provide the opportunity to dissect and analyze proper approaches to insurance billing and documentation.
Health insurance should be regarded as a tool that people use to guarantee that, one day, heaven forbid, should some illness overtake their body, they will not be left destitute, or without an option with regard to receiving proper health care. Insurance companies exist to fulfill this objective, through negotiating with healthcare providers, in a way of sharing risk associated with illness. Personally, I’ve always kind of considered chiropractors as a form of insurance in itself. Of course, I have been educated in the chiropractic paradigm, something most insurers have yet to appreciate.
The objective in this issue is to present the viewpoints of several leaders in the profession who have been battle tested, offering their advice on proper procedures in billing your services.
When doing anything at all, the first key to success is to have the proper attitude. If you don’t have the right attitude when fulfilling the documentation requirements, you’re most assuredly dooming yourself to failure. Like my father says, "Your attitude should be one of gratitude." Of course he was referring to me, or my brothers and sisters doing chores around the house, or yard work; however the same approach could be used when dealing with insurance companies, and their reimbursement practices. Please don’t sabotage your relationship with the insurance company your patient uses. It is a partnership, for the betterment of the patient. Of course, you always have the option not to accept any insurance at all, and that is completely up to you. You also have the right, and really the duty, to hold the insurance companies responsible for their role in this partnership through all the legal means necessary, as Dr. Studin explains in his article on page 42.
If you are looking for experts in insurance coding, a great resource, who many chiropractors have started with is Kathy Mills Chang. Kathy started out originally as a CA for a high volume clinic, eventually elevating all the way to the role of ACA consultant on insurance in the late 90s. Be sure to read the pointers she has, on page 24. Also this issue, another feature you don’t want to miss is Dr. Eric Kaplan’s article with great information on coding and compliance, beginning on page 56.
Finally, without a doubt, ladies and gentlemen, automation is the wave of the future. We feel so strongly about this point that we've gathered many of the latest innovations in technologies to make your shopping a bit easier. Take a look at the market profile on pages 14 and 16.
Till next time,
On behalf of The American Chiropractor Magazine,
Joseph Busch, B.A., D.C.
Editorial Director /