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Healthcare executives want more from payment systems | HIMSS 2023

Article

A survey of leaders indicated most said they weren’t very satisfied with the technology they are offering patients.

A survey by Waystar finds many healthcare executives aren't satisfied with their financial payment software. (Photo: Ron Southwick)

A survey by Waystar finds many healthcare executives aren't satisfied with their financial payment software. (Photo: Ron Southwick)

Chicago - Many healthcare executives say they want more from their healthcare payments technology, according to a recent survey.

About 7% of executives, or roughly 1 in 14, described themselves as very satisfied with the payment technology used by patients.

The survey was produced by Waystar, a provider of software for health payments and The Health Management Academy. Waystar officials discussed the findings during the HIMSS Global Health Conference & Exhibition. The groups said they surveyed leaders from 35 health systems.

Nearly half of the executives surveyed (44%) said they are struggling with a lack of tools and automation capabilities in improving their payment processes.

More than half of the respondents (63%) also cited patient estimates and the prior authorization process (53%) as factors leading to dissatisfaction from patients. Healthcare executives and patients have derided the prior authorization process, which requires insurers to approve treatments and procedures.

“Today’s complicated and confusing healthcare payments environment frustrates both providers and patients,” Matt Hawkins, chief executive officer of Waystar, said in a statement.

Health systems must understand that patients won’t stick with providers who make paying bills a hassle, said Dave Willis, senior vice president at The Health Management Academy.

“Revenue from patient obligations continues to rise, and the consequences for health systems are very real. Studies have shown that 60% of consumers who received an inaccurate estimate or bill report a desire to switch providers for a better care experience,” Willis said in a statement.

“Amid that backdrop, it is vital for health systems to make improvements in their patient financial experiences as part of their efforts to drive financial stability.”

Hospital leaders have increasingly said they need to make it easier for patients to use all facets of the healthcare system, including technology to pay bills.

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