This course outlines the responsibilities associated with scheduling, preregistering, and registering patients. Appropriate for all levels of patient access staff, the course emphasizes how to communicate with customers regarding their upcoming visit, as well as payment and insurance processes. 

Describing how to obtain complete and accurate demographic and insurance information from patients, the course explains proper communication with payers and with physicians’ offices. Common insurance terms are defined. In addition, "Patient Access Essentials" provides recommendations for discussing payment with self-pay patients and calculating self-pay amounts. It also describes the role of financial counselors. The course concludes with a discussion of the HIPAA Privacy Rule and how patient access staff must handle patients’ protected health information.

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  • Describe the relationship between scheduling and claims payment.
  • Explain the concepts of medical necessity and approved sites of service, and how they affect claims payment.
  • Define key billing and insurance terms that can cause confusion among patients.
  • Describe a best-practice approach to collecting complete and accurate information.
  • Describe the roles and responsibilities of the financial counselor.
  • Describe the basic features of commercial insurers, including managed care plans such as HMOs, PPOs, and POSs.>
  • Describe the basic features of Medicare and Medicaid.
  • Explain how to discuss self-pay amounts with patients.
  • Name six steps for obtaining pre-certification.
  • Identify general protections afforded to patients under the HIPAA Privacy Rule.
  • Define protected and non-protected health information.

HFMA members: $75     
Non-members: $299

Course information:

  • Approximate time to complete: 11 hours
  • Designed for: Patient access staff
  • Level: Basic
  • Instructional method: Self-study
  • Format: Online
  • Program prerequisite: None
  • Advance preparation: None
  • Course availability: One year from start date

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Our ironclad guarantee
HFMA stands behind the quality of our programming. If you are not satisfied, we will gladly refund your money or provide you with a credit certificate toward any future HFMA National educational programs or select products. Contact HFMA directly at 3 Westbrook Corporate Center, Suite 600, Westchester, IL 60154, Attn: Professional Development, or call (800) 252-4362, ext. 2. Please provide HFMA with your comments within two weeks of beginning the program.