A Missouri hospital is sharing the successes of a payment plan program it has developed to help individuals manage their healthcare debts.
Excelsior Springs Hospital partnered with a vendor — CarePayment — to build the payment plan program. Individuals can sign up for the program and the payments can be stretched out to as long as 70 months, depending on the balance on the account. The hospital has engaged in a multi-prong educational campaign, with not only hospital staff, but using local health fairs to educate the public about the payment plan option.
The educational campaign aims to ensure that individuals come in to the facility whenever they need it, and not to wait until they can afford it, when their condition may be more serious and require additional care.
If no payment is received for 45 days, the account is referred to a collection agency. Most hospitals wait as long as 90 days before sending an unpaid bill to a collection agency. Using a vendor for the payment plan for collecting unpaid debts allows the hospital to focus on its core skills — making people better.
Notes the hospital’s CEO: “We didn’t want to be a bank. The hospital did not have much experience with that.”