A Comprehensive Guide for Therapists: Managing the Aftermath of the Change Healthcare Breach

 

Welcome, therapists and healthcare providers! Today, we’re delving into the recent disruption caused by the Change Healthcare breach and outage, offering you a roadmap to navigate these choppy waters with resilience and strategic insight. This event underscores the importance of digital security and preparedness in our increasingly connected healthcare landscape. So, let’s explore alternative billing solutions, advocate for systemic improvements, and discuss strategies to safeguard your practice against future uncertainties.

Exploring Billing Alternatives: Office Ally and Availity

In the wake of the Change Healthcare outage, finding reliable clearinghouses to maintain your billing processes is crucial. Office Ally and Availity stand out as robust alternatives, ensuring your claims processing doesn’t miss a beat. Transitioning to these platforms can be a hurdle but in light of the ongoing saga with ChangeHealthcare, these alternatives can offer peace of mind and continuous operation of your billing cycle. Diversifying your billing options not only mitigates current disruptions but also strengthens your practice’s resilience against future challenges.

Advocacy Actions: Making Your Voice Heard

In response to the breach, it’s vital to engage in advocacy to push for systemic changes and support for affected healthcare providers. Here’s how you can make an impact:

  • Reach Out to Insurance Representatives: Collaborate with your insurance contacts for claim processing support. They can provide guidance and expedite solutions during this period.
  • Contact State Legislators: Advocate for declaring a state of emergency and securing funding to stabilize healthcare providers. Your input can influence critical policy decisions.
  • Engage with National Associations: Tap into the resources and advocacy initiatives of your professional associations. Collective action can drive significant change and support for the community.
  • File Complaints with Regulatory Bodies: If you’ve experienced gaps in notification and response due to the breach, filing complaints with your insurance commission and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is essential. Highlighting these issues helps improve protocols for future incidents.

The Importance of Contract Management

The Change Healthcare incident serves as a cautionary tale about the risks of not being directly contracted with insurers. Without direct contracts, billing through third-party clearinghouses can become a significant hurdle, potentially interrupting your revenue stream. Now is an opportune moment to consider direct contracting with insurers, providing more control and stability for your practice.

Diversifying Income and Financial Preparedness

Diversification is more than a buzzword; it’s a critical strategy for financial stability. Exploring different income streams can buffer your practice against sector-specific downturns and disruptions. For inspiration, check out our guide on 30 Ways to Diversify Your Income for therapists.

Additionally, establishing a line of credit with your bank offers a financial safety net, ensuring you have access to funds during unexpected challenges. This proactive step can be a cornerstone of your practice’s risk management strategy.The easiest time to get access to funds is BEFORE you need it. 

Building a Resilient Practice

The Change Healthcare breach and outage are stark reminders of the vulnerabilities inherent in our digital healthcare infrastructure. However, by exploring alternative billing platforms, engaging in targeted advocacy, managing contracts wisely, and diversifying income sources, you can build a more resilient and robust practice. Embrace these strategies as opportunities for growth and adaptation, ensuring your practice not only survives but thrives in the face of future challenges. Let’s embark on this journey together, equipped with knowledge, adaptability, and a proactive mindset.

We crafted a letter to send to clients and one to notify your team of the ongoing issues:

  • For clients
  • For your team
  • To your elected officials

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