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By AGS Health
September 26, 2023
When healthcare providers consider health information management and the tools that enhance medical coding operations, they often overlook how these processes impact patients' financial experience. Although most aspects of the medical coding process have only an indirect connection to the overall patient experience, the speed, accuracy, and thoroughness of your coding processes ultimately determine the speed and accuracy of billing for a patient's visit. As such, medical coding technologies built on artificial intelligence (AI), such as autonomous coding, are vital in expediting the coding and billing processes.
In this article, we will explore how autonomous coding can improve the patient financial experience.
Autonomous coding software leverages a variety of AI technologies, including natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning (ML), to analyze medical documentation and automatically assign appropriate codes, eliminating the need for time-consuming and error-prone manual processing. Many leading healthcare organizations are discovering how these capabilities can have a demonstrable impact on the patient financial experience, such as:
Many organizations are using AI technologies to automate the claims processing workflow. By integrating autonomous coding software into their health information management (HIM) workflows, they can accelerate the coding process, reduce claim denials, and expedite reimbursements. This not only enhances revenue cycle efficiency but helps prevent delayed billing to patients.
Medical coding guidelines and regulations are updated frequently, increasing the likelihood of human error in manual coding processes. With autonomous coding, these updates can be integrated into workflows immediately without the need for extensive training and education. This capability mitigates human error and eliminates the need for additional auditing and rework that are commonly conducted following code set updates under manual coding procedures.
Accurate and detailed clinical documentation is also crucial for quality patient care and proper billing and reimbursement. When analyzing clinical documentation, autonomous coding technology can assist provider organizations in uncovering missing or incomplete information based on poor confidence scores. This can help prevent patients from being improperly billed for treatments they did not receive. However, it’s important to note that autonomous coding should not be viewed as a replacement or alternative for clinical documentation improvement (CDI) software . In fact, pairing these technologies together will deliver optimal results across CDI and coding workflows.
Autonomous coding provides remarkable efficiency that minimizes administrative complications and enhances the overall efficacy of medical billing. Consequently, doctors and other clinical staff can allocate additional time and resources toward prioritizing patient care. Ultimately, these outcomes translate into expedited diagnoses and reduced waiting periods, facilitating an improved patient experience.
While an improved patient financial experience may not be the first benefit that comes to mind when considering medical coding operations, it’s important to consider these factors when assessing the potential benefits of autonomous coding. The ability to streamline coding processes, reduce errors, and mitigate administrative burdens on clinical staff can help you ensure that patients continue to have positive impressions of your organization even after their date of service.
AGS Health is more than a revenue cycle management company–we’re a strategic partner for growth. By blending technologies, services, and expert support, AGS Health partners with leading healthcare organizations across the US to deliver tailored solutions that solve the unique needs and challenges of each provider’s revenue cycle operations. The company leverages the latest advancements in automation, process excellence, security, and problem-solving through the use of technology and analytics–all made possible with college-educated, trained RCM experts. AGS Health employs more than 10,000 team members globally and partners with more than 100 clients across a variety of care settings, specialties, and billing systems.
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