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Study: Automation for Medicare Reimbursement Needs Work

February 7, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
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IVANS, Inc. a national health information exchange based out of Stamford, Conn., announced results from a study that showed automating claims processes play a critical role in making the Medicare reimbursement process faster. According to the study, 39 percent of providers still use paper to submit claims to commercial payers, but less than one percent use paper for Medicare claims and only 11 percent still use paper for Medicaid claims.

Most providers would like to share healthcare claims electronically, but 39 percent said this information is currently being handled by paper, phone or fax. Other processes they would like to see become electronic are enrollment information and lab results. Most providers, the study indicated would like to upgrade their technology but many either do not have the money or are unsure on how to do it.

One-third of providers surveyed said that budgetary concerns are the biggest challenges preventing them from sharing information electronically, while 21 percent said it was technology requirements which keep changing.

“With the projected increase in new patients as a result of mandated health insurance, combined with having to manage tight budgets and even tighter resources, all payers – both government and commercial – need to make certain they offer automated solutions for processing claims that will accelerate cash flow, lower the rate of uncompensated care and reduce paperwork,” Michael Schramm, IVANS president of healthcare services, said in a statement.

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