By Christine Kern, contributing writer
Growing support for ERA/EFT among payers and providers is one of the report's highlighted trends.
InstaMed has released its latest report on healthcare trends for 2013. The fourth annual report features key market trends impacting the healthcare payments industry in order to educate the market and promote awareness, change, and greater efficiency. The report is available here.
Bill Marvin, president and CEO of InstaMed, stated, “Our network continued to grow exponentially this past year, having processed more than 30 billion dollars in healthcare payments among providers and payers nationwide in 2013 alone. Our position in the market puts us in a front-row seat to witness the drastic changes happening in the healthcare payments industry. By releasing this annual report, we are leveraging this vantage point to educate the industry and promote change to improve efficiency in healthcare payments.”
The report gathered and analyzed quantitative and qualitative data from the InstaMed Network, including 85 billion dollars in healthcare payments volume from thousands of providers and payers. The latest trends featured in this report include the rise in consumer payment responsibility, the increased focus on the consumer in the healthcare payments process and the growing support for ERA/EFT (electronic remittance advice/electronic funds transfer) among payers and providers.
Some key points from the report include:
- As patient responsibility continues to increase, providers must collect from their patients more frequently – and often for larger amounts as a result of HDHP enrollment growth.
- To meet the need to collect more and keep costs low, providers are increasingly offering flexible and automated payment options to patients.
- Payers and providers must work together to meet consumer payment expectations that have evolved through experiences in other industries.
- Electronic transactions between payers and providers are increasing as each looks for ways to reduce administrative costs.
Ultimately, the report concludes, “The data from the 2013 Trends in Healthcare Payments Annual Report demonstrates that the healthcare payments industry is continuing to evolve, and that many providers and payers have already taken steps to accommodate for these changes. In order for all stakeholders to thrive as the industry evolves, they must be aware of how the industry is changing, acutely understand the challenges and apply process and policy changes to prepare. Efficiency, payment best practices, interoperability and security will be crucial to all industry stakeholders as the industry continues to change.”