December 2018

Cover Story

How To | Patient Access

Recalibrating Payment in the Era of Consumerism

Among the key functions of an effective patient access program are to ensure patients receive clear and concise bills for their health care and to make those bills easy for patients to pay at the time of service.

Web Exclusives

Trend | FASB and GASB Rules and Guidelines

Bottom-Line Implications of New Lease Accounting Standards: What Healthcare Leaders Should Know

Healthcare organizations should be prepared for a lease accounting standard, effective in 2019, that changes the way they are required to report leases on their balance sheets.

Trend | Enterprise Risk Management

Population Health Management: Opportunities and Challenges for Captives

Healthcare providers can best manage the risk posed by population health management initiatives by forming captive health plans and acquiring reinsurance to cover potential catastrophic loss.

Case Study | Staff Development

Developing Talent in the Revenue Cycle

A health system created a training program for revenue cycle leaders, resulting in improved performance.


How To | Patient Financial Communications

Patient-Centric Aid in a Consumer-Driven Marketplace

An adaptive financial assistance system that bills according to a patient’s economic situation can encourage better rates of patient payment.

Trend | Costing and Managerial Accounting

Understanding Why Hospital Costs Are Increasing: It Depends on the Metrics

An analysis of factors driving increases in payment in the U.S healthcare industry, using Equivalent Discharges as the volume metric, finds that 84 percent of the increase are related to increased population and intensity of service.

Trend | Strategic Partnerships Mergers and Acquisitions

Acquisition Versus Independence: Will Hospitals Continue Acquiring Physician Practices?

Small and solo physician practices are finding better ways of coping with administrative burdens, making it more practical, and desirable, to maintain or return to independence.

Focus Area

Case Study | Self-Payment Collection

Boston Children’s Journey to a Better Healthcare Payment Experience

An electronic payment system can help a hospital increase revenue.


Column | Patient Financial Communications

Imagining a More Consumer-Centric Approach to Patient Financial Communications

HFMA, the AHA, and AHIP have developed a guide for healthcare consumers designed to help them know how to avoid surprise out-of-network medical bills; healthcare organizations are encouraged to share the guide with their patients.

Column | Healthcare Business Trends

The 2018 Midterm Elections: Implications for Health Care

The healthcare industry could see some significant changes now that the balance of power in Washington D.C. has shifted. 

Column | Strategic Planning

Rebalancing the Portfolio

As they modify their strategies to account for change in 2019, healthcare organizations should consider how risks and rewards might have changed and where they might best redeploy their dollars.

Column | Capital Finance

Capital Markets 2018 Wrap-Up and Trends to Consider for 2019

The healthcare sectors’ extended access to abundant, low-cost, and relatively low-risk capital will change in 2019, and tracking four key issues will illuminate how those changes impact capital finance.

Column | Financial Leadership

Work: The Cure For Political Overload

HFMA President and CEO Joe Fifer discusses why today’s healthcare challenges transcend politics—and the implications for healthcare finance leaders. 


Trend | Benchmarking and Forecasting

2014-16 Trend Shows Continuing Decline in Self-Pay Admissions to Hospitals

An analysis finds a decline in the number of patients admitted to U.S. hospitals without healthcare insurance and an increase in beneficiaries of government-sponsored and commercial insurance plans.


Research & Reports | Revenue Cycle

The Path to a Patient-Centric Revenue Cycle

A research highlight that looks at key takeaways from a focus group of senior healthcare leaders about patient collections strategies.


Trendsetter | Productivity and Process Improvement

Taking a Holistic View of Procure-To-Pay

An in-depth look at how one company is enabling more efficient procure-to-pay processes to streamline healthcare organizations’ financial operations. 

Business Profile | Artificial Intelligence

Grant Thornton: Helping Organizations Embrace Robotic Process Automation

Two senior leaders at Grant Thornton talk about the advantages of robotic process automation to improve office efficiency, reduce costs, and mitigate risk.