Why Now Is The Time To Consider Full Revenue Cycle Outsourcing

R1 RCMMarch 29, 2022

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Pandemic-related workforce struggles are still squeezing the bottom line at today’s healthcare organizations. Clinical labor costs have increased by an average of 8% per patient day compared with 2019, amounting to $17 million in additional annual expenses for a 500-bed hospital, according to data from PINC AI, a platform of Premier Inc.¹


Worker shortages, revenue collection issues, and other operational challenges are being keenly felt across the entire healthcare spectrum. That’s certainly the case in revenue cycle management departments, where digital innovation initiatives have traditionally lagged and competition for workers is especially fierce due to potential employees also being interested in similar roles in retail or finance.


In an industry where margins are already tight, there’s not a lot of cushion for incremental moves or doing more of the same. Organizations that have organically built their revenue cycle systems over time may find the current market struggles to be particularly burdensome–especially those that have traditionally relied on and employed a large number of workers to manage day-to-day operations.


And it’s not just the financial performance of the hospital that’s at stake – organizations that fail to embrace new initiatives designed to streamline and automate service delivery, enhance the consumer experience, and otherwise improve operations will fall behind the pack in competitive markets.


Given these compounding pressures, now is the time to act differently.


Organizations that embrace an end-to-end (E2E) revenue cycle partnership to bring timely and much-needed innovation to their operations can position themselves to thrive during continued workforce and economic uncertainty.


By implementing purpose-built integrated technology, powered by automation, health systems can reduce the friction that negatively impacts cost and service delivery while simultaneously improving the overall patient experience. The ability to seamlessly integrate with existing I.T. infrastructures is also necessary to provide a standardized approach that delivers additional scalability and speed to value.


Having an operating system that utilizes technology and proven processes to standardize a health system’s entire revenue cycle provides a roadmap for success and transparency into performance that ensures lasting improvements.


In addition, the fixed cost of maintaining and recruiting talent is eliminated with an E2E partner. They take the brunt of this labor shortage by ensuring their customers continually have access to the valuable talent and technology needed and are not affected by industry disruptions.


Companies offering full partnerships to manage revenue cycle operations for providers have been solely focused on building upon their capabilities, in the form of technology and scalability and process improvement for quite some time. A reliable E2E partner takes full accountability for their customers’ revenue cycle, bringing deep and broad expertise, industry best practices and technology-driven optimized end-to-end workflows in the form of a complete operating system. This is the type of differentiated value that allows health systems to focus on clinical care and prevail financially through the current market headwinds.


Results can be immediate and significant. With a reliable E2E revenue cycle partner, organizations across the country have been able to reduce costs, improve revenue and transform the patient experience, with measurable results that include:

  • 20% reduction in cost to collect
  • 5% increase in NPR
  • Up to 40% increase in patient satisfaction


Since these critical workforce shortages and additional pressures are predicted to continue, the most important consideration right now is timing. Organizations that act now to drive innovation will set themselves apart as the leaders. Those that put off bold innovation may indeed find themselves increasingly at risk.


  1. https://www.hfma.org/topics/hfm/2021/december/soaring-labor-costs-stemming-from-covid-19-test-hospitals-and-he.html


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Author Bio: Content written on behalf of R1 RCM.