I get the same question all the time from existing and prospective clients “Do I tell me clients that I am outsourcing their work to India or not?”. Typically, medical billing companies have contractual provisions whereby the medical providers authorize the billing services to be performed by employees, agents, contractors, and subcontractors of the billing company, which includes the authority to perform certain billing services offshore. These contractual provisions are now standard given the industry shift toward offshore services, and the desire of medical billing companies to have the offshore option open. Those clients are usually not concerned about having this conversation with their clients. They have most probably discussed it when signing on the client.
For clients that have not had the “outsourcing conversation” and then decide to outsource my advice is to tell your client that you will charge them X% if you send some work offshore and Y% if you keep all the billing work in the U.S. Charging them one or two percentage points more if keeping it all in the U.S The client can then decide what they feel most comfortable with.
If you use 4D Global for your outsourcing needs; you can also explain that no data/information goes offshore. This means that the data is never housed or stored on offshore servers. 4D Global has dual monitors and access the clients information on one screen and enter it from another screen. The security measures and protocols we implement to ensure HIPAA compliance prevent the transfer or movement of any protected data out of the U.S.
I see more of a HIPAA compliance problem with U.S. employees working from home than having an offshore team do the work. At 4D Global we restrict any cell phones or cameras in the office. It would be impossible for an employee to take a photo of any PHI (personal health information). If an employee is working from home, how would you prevent the employee from taking photos of PHI? How would you prevent their children, spouse or anyone else from accessing their computer or viewing printed EOB’s or any other PHI information?
Outsourcing is a far better option from a compliance standpoint, price and speed of claims processing. They do all data entry during the U.S. evening time and are working while you are sleeping creating a 24 hour service – something you can not get from a U.S. employee.