patient communications

The No Surprises Act’s effective date is nearing. In 2022, health plans will see the volume of patient communications rise. The law requires insurers to send patients cost estimates before services. 

The law’s intention is to provide transparency of costs to consumers. As with any regulation, there has to be a way to facilitate that information. Those will be advance EOBs (explanation of benefits). You’ll have to send them within a provided time frame as well, so this new requirement needs workflows and processes. Those will be much different from standard EOBs or other patient communications.

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Higher Volume of Patient Communications Likely Ahead

communication volumeYou may have experienced volume declines for patient information in the past few years. More digital adopters mean less physical mail. Now that trend is likely to go the other way. If your volume significantly increases in 2022, what will the impact be?

Compliance Concerns

Many documents sent to patients have compliance parameters around timeframes. You can’t be late on these things, so it would be hard to re-prioritize or downgrade some communications. If you manage all these internally, it could be a risky proposition. 

Higher Costs

If you have an in-plant, you’ll need to boost capacity. That will require significant investment in technology, space, and people. It’s also something that takes a while to implement. If you currently outsource this to a vendor, at least in part, what cost increases can you expect from them? Will they consider these to be rush jobs that have rush fees?

Preprinting Woes

If you currently preprint your EOBs with the framework, you could run into two issues. First, you may have to do more of this and might not have the space to store them. Second, your current template may need changes that are specific to advanced EOBs. 

The best solution is not to preprint at all. Rather, dynamic printing from data files is the answer. White rolls of paper go into the inkjet printers, and they can each be unique with no changeouts.

Patient Communications Will Be Different in 2022

You certainly don’t want to be surprised by the No Surprises Act. You’ll almost certainly have greater volume in 2022. Plus, you’ll be dealing with an entirely new type of communication. To transition with ease, reduce costs, and ensure compliance, talk to the team at PCI Group. All we do is transactional mail, and we’re a partner to many healthcare entities. See how we support healthcare with print and mail services.