Going Above & Beyond a Dermatology Superbill
How our dermatology EMR system does more than superbills
What is a Superbill?
Paper, paper and more paper. A dermatology superbill is just that: a sheet of paper with a list of procedure codes that a provider circles to indicate services performed during a clinical exam with the corresponding diagnosis.
What Does a Superbill Do?
- It provides traceability for a patient’s location in the office.
- It signals to the clinical staff what patient is in what room and how the patient progresses through the visit.
- It provides traceability of charges for the patient encounter and helps to ensure the practice receives and processes billable charges due by the patient and/or insurance carrier.
In my opinion, a dermatology superbill acts as a security blanket. From my experiences in working with practices around the country, this piece of paper brings a level of comfort and familiarity for a physician and his or her staff.
Let’s face it. Filling out a superbill is quite a manual, tedious and time-consuming process. The superbill lists procedure codes specific to that specialty. The provider needs to circle items on services provided, follow-ups needed, etc. The diagnosis associated with the procedure is manually entered on the sheet too. At check-out, the patient physically hands this to the check out staff. The procedure codes get entered (again manually) into the practice management system as charges to bill the patient and/or insurance carrier.
In today’s digital age, just as you upgrade your smartphone or car, updating technology in your practice becomes just as important.
Upgrading from a Superbill
Our Practice Management system integrates with EMA to create a bill that eliminates the need for a dermatology superbill. Since EMA captures structured data – also known as actionable data – at the point of care, automated ICD-10, CPT and modifier coding occurs, as well as simultaneously generating notes and superbills automatically.
So instead of tracking your patient on what becomes a piece of crumpled paper, you can use an iPad or desktop view to help seamlessly track your patient’s whereabouts, diagnoses and follow-ups.
With a dermatology superbill, a practice could potentially miss codes, as it lacks specialty-specific information and coding changes. EMA and our dermatology Practice Management system help to automate this.
With EMA and Practice Management working together, when a patient checks-in, the front office no longer has to call the back office to let them know the patient arrived. The staff receives a notification on their iPad or desktop and the patient’s photo populates. Your staff can then personally connect with the patient when they’re ready to be seen.
Superbill vs. EMA + Practice Management
Let’s compare what the process looks like when utilizing a superbill compared to using technology, including a dermatology EMR and practice management system.
With a superbill, the patient arrives for his or her clinical visit and the pre-printed superbill is located. The staff documents the appointment time, arrival time and patient funds collected or due, including copay, balance, etc. Then the superbill gets placed on a rack or in a viewing area for clinical staff to see “Chart Up.” The patient is retrieved, brought to exam room and the superbill is placed in a file outside the room. The provider retrieves the superbill upon entering and will circle service(s), indicating the diagnosis and recommended follow-up. Finally the superbill is handed to the patient to take to checkout.
So why use a piece of paper if technology can replace the superbill and make you more efficient?
If using our dermatology EMR system, EMA, and Practice Management system, when the patient arrives, his or her information is updated and payment responsibility collected. As the patient is checked-in for his or her clinical exam, the clinical agenda view updates to display patient readiness and the patient is retrieved for the exam. The patient’s location — including room and status — is selected for patient tracking and whereabouts, providing visibility to the staff as to where the patient is located in the practice’s flow.
At checkout, the clinical recommended follow-up and visit coding are completed. All of this is finalized without the use of paper, but rather by utilizing an iPad and desktop view. Using an integrated EMR system and practice management system allows your practice to streamline and connect the front and back office and gives a more personal and improved experience for the patient, all with the help of technology.
Patient Flow Screen in Lieu of a Superbill
My Experiences From Around the Country
In my role, I’ve had the opportunity to travel across the country meeting and working with practices that have turned into valued clients. I love hearing what they share about using our EMR and Practice Management system and working with our team. Hearing statements like, “…the check in and out process has bridged the communication gap between our front office and clinical,” and “…we finally have a system that understands the flow of the patient experience,” or “there is no guessing or having to ask questions about next follow-up or charges when you can view it at all times,” are all music to my ears.
I so enjoy hearing and sharing these stories. One of those stories comes from Peachtree Dermatology which you can read here. I love what I do, and when I can help transform a practice by using technology and helping them part ways with their beloved superbill, it makes my day that much better.
This article was originally published on March 28, 2018 and updated on May 7, 2019.
Interested in trading in your “security blanket”? We can help.
Senior Sales Solutions Specialist
Bringing over 20 years of knowledge in practice administration and billing, Laura Serrone started at Modernizing Medicine as the Lead Requirements Analyst on the Practice Management team. Upon launching the Practice Management system, she transitioned to Sales Solution Specialist and is a subject matter expert for Modernizing Medicine’s sales team.