Pitfalls of Medical Billing from Overseas
Over the past decade American companies struck gold in using offshore companies in countries such as China,
Pakistan, India, Panama and other places, however, times have changed. Outsourcing services overseas has not only
produced higher standards and better income in other countries, but also, awareness and education here.
Wages for Medical Coding Services
Employees in other countries are no longer willing to work for low wages. They are going on strike
demanding better working conditions, health care and more money so they can live decent lifestyles. These strikes
are costing American companies dollars that they thought they were saving. The following request for help stands
for many similar messages we receive often:
"Hi, this is Arul from India! I have experience in medical billing and I would like to work for doctors
in the USA. Please provide any suggestion you can share. I would really appreciate it. Thanks."
Individuals and companies from overseas, including India, who seek work for doctor's offices here in
the US must understand it won't be easy. Many US billers are having a hard time finding work, even those with
documentation of adequate training and experience. To find a doctor to let you work from overseas will take
enormous effort, and even a little bit of luck. The biggest challenge is to get the doctor to trust you.
New laws are being passed to stop the sending of patient's health histories and information outside
the USA. What once seemed like having struck gold overseas doesn't seem like such a good idea anylonger: off-shore
employees are demanding better wages and US laws are changing.
Outsourcing Offshore May Not Be Such a Good Idea Anymore
Doctors, clinics and hospitals used to hire an offshore company to perform the coding and billing as a means of
saving money. They were blindly putting their business in the hands of people who may or may not have the training
to do the work successfully. As a result, claims were denied due to coding and billing errors. Complaints were
submitted to regulatory agencies because of the demands for more money. These demands came with threats of
releasing personal health information to other agencies and the public. However, these complaints fell on deaf ears
due to the inability to investigate or enforce US laws in a foreign country.
State Laws are being discussed to prevent the sending of personal information offshore. The new Health care
Reform Act will demand registration with State Medicaid agencies by Billing Agents. How this will affect the
offshore billing agent is unknown at this time. Selecting a US Coder or Biller is a buyer's market. Job
requirements can be high with demands for high quality education, certification, and experience. Meeting or
exceeding these requirements can offset revenue losses allowing for higher wages.
Whether a doctor needs medical coding and billing services the one thing can never be stressed enough is
that whomsoever they hire here or overseas, their staff should be adequately trainined and supervised, and
their services should cover the widest range of knowledge and skills in the industry as possible. Their
medical billers should have a solid understanding of the coding process that's involved and their medical
coders should know what has to be done by the billers.