As the healthcare sector continues to grow and change, many organizations are looking for ways to cut costs and streamline operations. Hiring an offshore pre-authorization specialist is one way to achieve this.
Before we share the tips on the hiring process, let us first know what pre-authorization is all about, the roles and responsibilities of a prior authorization virtual assistant, and the medical procedures that need prior authorization.
The Role of Pre-Authorization Specialists in Healthcare
Pre-authorization (also known as prior authorization, or PA) is an important step in the healthcare process. It involves evaluating the treatments and medications prescribed to patients before they receive them. PA process ensures that patients receive medically necessary healthcare services that their insurance covers.
The pre-authorization process makes sure that patients get the care they need quickly and for the least amount of money. It helps patients avoid medical procedures and treatments that they do not need, which reduces their overall healthcare costs.
Pre-authorization specialists, also referred to as prior authorization specialists, play a crucial role in this process. They ensure that all healthcare providers receive approval from insurance companies before providing certain medical treatments or procedures to the patients.
These specialists work with healthcare providers and figure out how to get approval from insurance companies, which is often a complicated and time-consuming process. They also verify the patient’s treatment eligibility and insurance coverage.
What’s more, they also assist patients throughout the pre-authorization process. They can also help patients get the things they need and make sure they get the treatments they need at prices they can afford.
The Responsibilities/ Job Description of a Prior Authorization Specialist
Indeed, prior authorization specialists are essential to the healthcare industry. Their job involves a lot of different tasks to ensure that all parts of the prior authorization process have been taken care of:
Verifying Patient Eligibility
An insurance authorization specialist must verify that a patient is eligible for a specific treatment or procedure before scheduling it. It could mean checking the patient’s insurance coverage, looking at their medical records, and verifying that the procedure is medically necessary.
Communicating with Healthcare Providers
Moreover, prior authorization specialists must have strong communication skills. They must effectively liaise with healthcare providers to discuss the prescribed medical treatments, obtain medical records, and ensure all necessary documents are submitted.
Navigating the Prior Authorization Process
Prior authorization specialists are responsible for guiding patients through the entire prior authorization process. They must have a deep understanding of healthcare policies. This helps the patients understand the requirements and make sure that they have fulfilled all prerequisites before giving a procedure or treatment.
Keeping Accurate Records
Prior authorization specialists must keep accurate and up-to-date records of all prior authorization requests. They must have excellent organizational skills to keep track of multiple cases and guarantee that all data, such as patient information, insurance information, and the status of each request, remain up to date.
Monitoring and Updating Insurance Coverage
Furthermore, insurance authorization specialists must monitor and stay up-to-date on changes to insurance coverage and policies. They are responsible for ensuring all prior authorization requests match the most recent information.
Providing Customer Service
Prior authorization specialists must provide excellent customer service to patients, healthcare providers, and insurance companies. Part of their role is to manage and ensure that they address any questions or concerns that may arise during the prior authorization process.
Insurance authorization specialists must have strong problem-solving skills and can resolve any issues during the PA process. It could mean finding alternative treatments, working with insurance companies to solve problems, and helping patients understand their options.
Which Procedures are Most Likely to Need Prior Authorization?
Some medical treatments and procedures are more likely to require prior authorization due to their complexity and the corresponding cost. The patient’s insurance coverage and specific policies of the insurance company may also affect which medical treatments require prior authorization.
Before undergoing certain surgeries such as orthopedic surgery, spinal surgery, and some types of cancer surgery, it may be necessary to get approvals. It is because these procedures are often complex and expensive. Insurance companies want to make sure that they are medically necessary and covered by the patient’s insurance policy.
Some imaging tests, like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computerized tomography (CT) scans, may also require prior authorization. These tests are often expensive, too.
Visits to specialists, such as cardiologists, oncologists, and neurologists, may also need prior authorization. Insurance companies want to make sure that these visits are medically necessary and covered by the patient’s insurance policy.
Certain prescription drugs may also require prior authorization to ensure if medically necessary. These are particularly specialty drugs for chronic conditions like multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and cancer.
Durable Medical Equipment
Durable medical equipment, like oxygen tanks and wheelchairs, may also require prior authorization to ensure that the patient’s insurance policy covers these devices.
The prior authorization process may vary depending on the policies of the insurance companies and the patient’s insurance coverage. Insurance companies have different policies and may have requirements specific only to them.
So, partner with Phoenix Virtual Solutions to streamline your prior authorization process. Their prior authorization virtual assistant helps you with hassle-free communication with insurance companies and rechecking insurance policies.
Hiring an Offshore Pre-Authorization Specialist
An offshore pre-authorization specialist can provide cost savings and improved efficiency, which is why it is important to be familiar with the hiring process to look for the right person for the job.
- Determine Your Needs
Before you start your search, spend some time figuring out your specific needs and requirements. Think about the number of pre-authorization requests, how complex the cases are, and what skills and experience the specialist needs.
- Search for Qualified Candidates
There are several ways to find qualified candidates for an offshore prior authorization specialist position. You can use job boards or reach out to recruitment agencies and offshore staffing companies like Phoenix Virtual Solutions. Check each candidate’s credentials and experience before continuing with the hiring process.
- Consider Cultural Fit
When hiring an offshore prior authorization specialist, it’s important to consider cultural fit. Consider a candidate who can work well in a remote environment and is comfortable using technology to communicate and collaborate with your team.
- Evaluate Communication Skills
Communication is key when working with a prior authorization specialist. Make sure to test the candidate’s English skills. See if they can communicate with patients, healthcare providers, and insurance companies in a clear and concise manner.
- Establish Clear Expectations
Before hiring a pre-authorization specialist, establish clear expectations and guidelines. It includes clarifying the job description, setting performance goals, and explaining how feedback and performance evaluations work.
- Provide the Right Tools
To ensure success, provide your prior authorization virtual assistant with the resources they need to do their job. It includes access to healthcare databases, electronic health records, and any other technology they may need to complete their work.
Pre-authorization specialists play a vital role in the patients’ journey during the prior authorization process.
The PA process can be confusing for patients because sometimes, they fail to explain why they have delayed the patient’s treatment. Pre-authorization specialists can help explain and keep patients informed about the status of their treatment requests.
Given these points, hiring an offshore prior authorization specialist can take your organization to the next level and enhance the patient experience. It’s important to approach the hiring process thoughtfully and with care to ensure that you find the right person for the job.
So, do you want to hire a pre-authorization specialist? You can make a positive impact on patient outcomes. Contact Phoenix Virtual Solutions today, and let’s make your journey happen!