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Collection Call Strategies

Making collection calls can be a delicate process, and to do it well, you need to carefully consider the purpose of the call. Rectifying payment discrepancies is necessary, but maintaining or repairing patient relationships in the process is key.

Patients may be upset, embarrassed, or frustrated by collection calls. It is important to keep the goal of maintaining positive patient relationships in mind. Some of the tips we recommend for making collection calls include the following:

  • Define your proceed and assign to a specific team member with KPIs related to collections
  • Timely follow ups to avoid embarrassment.
  • Email unpaid invoices to patients for quick and easy reference with “pay now” options.
  • Show empathy and actively listen to your patient’s concerns or challenges. Allow them to acknowledge the debt and express their perspective.
  • Provide convenient payment options by offering multiple payment methods. 
  • Avoid leaving too many voicemail messages.
  • Document your communication attempts

Visual-Eyes Software can help make the process of making collection calls easier by helping you easily access all the critical information you need before, during, and after calls through features like the invoicing module

How to Manage Patient Payment Expectations

Taking the time to speak with patients about payment expectations before their first appointment may feel awkward, but through clear, polite, and positive communication, you can help reinforce payment is due when services are provided and avoid situations with patients who may not be prepared to pay for your services. 

If a patient is not able to pay for your services, it is often better to find out before their appointment or receive care from your team.

You can avoid the need to make collection calls by carefully managing patient expectations about the types of payment and insurance coverage you accept and when your practice expects payment for services. When you have these conversations with patients, it is important to be clear and firm while also remaining kind and understanding. 

a close up of a phone and headset

Making Payments Easier

Providing multiple payment options for your patients can make it easier for people to pay for your services. It may not seem like a significant benefit, but it can help you avoid collection calls. 

Providing multiple payment options can also help make collection communication easier and smoother by reducing the potential for patients to become frustrated when they try to pay for your services and find that they cannot pay through your accepted methods. 

Consider accepting credit card payments over the phone, providing options for e-transfers, and working with payment processors that enable online payment options. You can integrate Visual-Eyes with payment processors that offer online payments to provide more options for your patients. 

Managing Patient Payments with Visual-Eyes Software

The invoicing module of Visual-Eyes is designed to help make your entire accounting, payment, and insurance billing process easier for your staff and patients. The user-friendly interface is intended to help you monitor each patient’s invoice details and maintain your accounts receivable records with accuracy. 

You can use the invoicing module to generate useful reports for keeping track of daily reconciliations and patient account balances. These reports can help you make informed plans about when to start the collection process for overdue payments. 

It can be easy for uncollected payments to become old issues—making it harder to collect payment. Receiving calls about older uncollected payments can also be a frustrating experience for patients. Reviewing reports from Visual-Eyes regularly can help you stay on top of collection calls so they do not become bigger issues in the future.

Creating a Consistent Follow-Up Plan for Collection Calls

When you do need to make collection calls, having a clear, consistent process for your team to follow can help make the process smoother for your staff and patients. 

The most basic collection plan is to send a message the day a payment has been missed with the relevant invoice and any other pertinent information. Then make a follow-up call at a predetermined time if they still have not paid. Remember that staying up-to-date with collections can help make the process less stressful for your team and patients—and help make it easier to complete collection calls effectively. 

Emailing invoices with a clear call to action, such as “click to pay now,” is a proven effective method of collection. Including multiple payment options can help increase the effectiveness of these messages.

Acting with consideration for patients is crucial during this process. Try to limit communication that may seem overbearing and be clear with the messages you are sending. 

You can rely on Visual-Eyes to support your collection process by making it easier for staff to access the information they need when they make collection calls and send emails—and by helping your staff send your patients their invoices and any other information they may need. 

Documentation of Communication

Documenting collection-related communication can be key for speaking clearly with your patients about collections in the future. The invoices you email from directly within Visual-Eyes will be documented in the communication tab for easy future reference to help make that communication process smoother. 

Additionally, making notes of your attempted calls, as well as any conversations with your patients, can help ensure that all your staff are able to address questions from your patients regarding their accounts.

Optometry Practice Management with Visual-Eyes Software

Visual-Eyes Software has a comprehensive suite of features designed with the needs of optometrists, their staff, and their patients in mind—it can go beyond invoicing to support every part of your daily practice management needs.

When you get started with Visual-Eyes, we provide training and a seamless data conversion process to help you boost your patient experiences and practice efficiency without causing unnecessary disruptions to your daily operations. 

Book a demo to learn more about the unique benefits of choosing Visual-Eyes Software as your practice management partner. 

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