Impact of baby-boomers coupled with the health-care reforms
Baby boomers are usually believed to be people born during the post-World War II birth rate boom, lasting from 1946 through 1964. According to a survey conducted by the CDC (Center for disease control), many elderly people started flooding doctors’ offices even ten years ago in 2001. Now since the latest health care reforms would extend coverage to people who previously were denied medical cover due to myriad reasons doctors, hospices, and hospitals would find themselves busier than before.
According to the CDC, many would seek preventive care and visit physicians for chronic illnesses in addition to obtaining newly launched drugs. The most common ailment that these elderly suffer from is diabetes which needs continual monitoring and treatment in order to ward off other diseases that can be the result of mismanagement of diabetes.
Even though people in the baby boomers generation did visit doctors more often in 2001, many were denied the care due to lack of proper health insurance. Now since the health care reforms would extend coverage to more citizens, it would not be a surprise if the number of elderly visiting hospitals and doctors would dramatically increase. This in turn would mean longer working hours for doctors, nurses, and residents and more interaction with the insurance companies. In face of such demand for health services it becomes crucial to manage efficiency and accuracy since this can turn out to be literally a matter of life and death for many elderly patients.
Another factor that would affect the number of elderly visiting doctors’ offices is increase in life expectancy. It has been observed by the CDC that there is a greater continuity in doctor-patient relationship for baby boomers. This means that the same patient would visit the same physician more number of times which also presents the dilemma of customer retention for physicians. Moreover, the elderly usually have multiple conditions or illnesses which require more effort from doctors.
Many experts believe that the health-care reform would work well for older patients since this means boomers who are unemployed or underemployed will be able to get health care insurance. New benefits would be provided for people above the age of 50 by closing the part D Donut hole under Medicare which would provide long term care assistance.
The best way to manage the flooding of your offices with baby boomers is to have a staff that knows all the procedures which are related to insurance, medical billing, coding and transcription. It is apparent that a conventional receptionist cannot perform these services and professional billers and coders would be required in order to increase revenue, manage time and ensure minimum accounts receivables. This can only be achieved if a team of professional billers and coders are hired in order to save time and increase effectiveness of the treatment provided by you.
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