Revenue Cycle

Q: What's a good formula for FTE per patient account?

Patient Financial Services Weekly Advisor, July 9, 2004

A: It's hard to say what the best staffing ratio is, since every business office is different. The best way to derive a number per FTE is to do a time study for each FTE. Each FTE should "tick" how many accounts they work over a 30-day period.

When asking staff to "tick" their production, it is VERY important that they understand you are doing this to evaluate the workload distribution. It shouldn't be seen as big brother looking over their shoulder or resistance will be encountered. Good communication can make the benchmarking process a positive exercise for everyone.

The average workload assignment per insurance collector should be between 1,800-2,300 accounts depending on the availability of online status checking and the depth of information available online. This number assumes they work insurance correspondence received on their accounts.

It is important to track the average age of accounts and volume assigned to each collector. You will be able to see how effective your account distribution is by whether or not the age of accounts is dropping or rising.

This question was answered by Sue Davis, CPAM, manager, central business office at University Community Health in Tampa, FL.

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