Will 2023 Be the Year of Outsourced Medical Billing?February 3rd, 2023 - Find-A-Code
Many healthcare providers have chosen to keep medical coding and billing in-house. From HIPAA compliance to the complexity of ICD-10 codes, it has just been easier to keep track of things by not outsourcing medical billing or coding. But things are changing. So much so that 2023 could be the year that outsourced services finally take over.
Why is outsourced medical billing and coding expected to be so strong in the coming year? It is a combination of two things: a labor shortage and continued high demand for healthcare services. Simply put, the healthcare industry itself is expected to grow considerably. Meanwhile, healthcare systems are struggling to hire and retain employees.
The Great Resignation
If you pay attention to employment news, you are probably familiar with what is being termed the Great Resignation. The Great Resignation began almost two years ago, with millions of people leaving their jobs in hopes of finding greener pastures elsewhere. It was facilitated by the COVID pandemic.
No doubt the Great Resignation has slowed somewhat. Nonetheless, there are still millions of people who are no longer satisfied with the traditional work model. They no longer want to work for employers who treat them as resources rather than people. Some have started their own companies, others have latched on to gig work, and still others have moved from one employer to another.
What does this have to do with outsourced medical billing? Everything. Dissatisfied workers who have left traditional employment might be in a very good position to start their own medical billing and coding companies in 2023. Experienced billers and coders already know everything they need to about ICD-10 codes, ICD-11 codes, NPI lookup, etc. It simply a matter of learning how to apply that knowledge in a small business setting.
Some States Hurting More Than Others
The Great Resignation is hurting healthcare providers in some states more than others. For example, California and New York have witnessed a mass exodus of healthcare workers in recent years. It's so bad that some estimates suggest the two states could be facing a combined healthcare labor shortage of 500,000 just a few years from now.
If healthcare systems cannot find the staff members to handle medical coding and billing, the only other option is to outsource. The beauty of outsourcing is that partners do not need to be located in California or New York. Thanks to the internet and digital systems, outsourcing partners can be anywhere.
Expected Industry Growth
Formerly employed medical billers and coders looking to start their own companies have industry growth on their side. Healthcare itself continues to grow at a steady pace. More importantly, global demand for outsourced medical billing and coding is expected to grow more than 12% in 2023.
Here is the point: healthcare systems are turning to outsourced services more often than ever before. They will continue to do so next year. The demand for outsourced services will be there; it is up to independent providers to meet it.
The ironic thing is that outsourcing medical billing and coding relies heavily on the remote work model. It relies on digital data being transferred between networks and healthcare systems via the internet. So while outsourced medical billing and coding is expected to see tremendous growth, so is remote telemedicine.
We do not have a crystal ball capable of predicting what 2023 will look like for outsourced medical billing and coding. But if recent trends prove accurate, next year could be a very good year for new third-party medical billers and coders. It could be a particularly good year, indeed.
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