Selecting the right coding audit company for your organization
The process of performing regular coding audits in order to evaluate the effectiveness of your organizations coding procedures has become a necessity throughout today’s healthcare industry. And with more and more companies looking beyond their own departments to outsource this task, it’s important to consider the key factors of choosing a coding audit vendor that is just the right fit. Providers and healthcare organizations that work with coding vendors are well aware of the many factors that go into selecting coding consultant companies. Ensuring the vendor is aligned to the needs and requirements of the organization and its members is top priority. But what are main items of importance to keep in mind?
Experience: How long has the organization been performing in the field of medical coding consulting services? And is it one of their main areas of expertise, or just a side-service they offer. A good way to figure this is out is by doing some research. Check their company website; it usually highlights their credentials, achievements, and testimonials. The company website can prove to be a great resource to much of the information you are looking for without having to do a lot of digging. Another important question to keep in mind is if the company is experienced in working with small and large facilities. Do they handle on-site as well as remote audits? More often than not, determining how versatile a company is can lead you in the right direction towards the best possible choice. Does the coding consultant company knows how to partner with their clients? This is an important answer to seek. Providing an audit is not the same as partnering with a client to increase quality. Experienced auditing partners know the difference.
Planning & Communication: Does the healthcare coding audit vendor you are thinking about working with give you peace of mind through the way they communicate their plan for your organization? Choose a vendor that practices good communication techniques prior to a contract being signed. A good auditing partner will provide you with information and statistics from their past cases to ensure that you are making the right choice in working with them as well as show you how they stack up against the competition. Does their audit plan for your organization include periodic check-ins or education sessions? If so, you are headed in the right direction. A reputable vendor should include a “touch-base”, or what we call at YES, a coaching session in their plan to keep the client educated and informed on the processes taking place.
Performance & Follow Through: Make sure your vendor of choice will provide you with statistical findings, trend reports, and suggested paths to improvement that will not only help identify problematic patterns in your current coding and documentation, but educate you in the ways that you can improve in these areas. A good way to gauge a potential vendor’s performance is by checking their references and reviews. Would other reputable companies refer you to give them your business? How highly are they rated or reviewed? A smart way to find the answer to these questions is to look for testimonials or reviews from past projects. Be sure to keep an eye out for any trends in these reviews, where certain areas of service are repeatedly commended (or criticized). This can help you gauge if the areas that this vendor specialized in match the needs of your company.
When it comes to selecting the coding audit vendor that fits best for your company, knowledge is power. So, don’t be afraid to dive in and do the necessary research if your goal is to yield the best results for your team. Considering these key areas before making your choice can save you time, money and a lot of work in the long run.