The Unique Benefits of the Zelis ACH Network

by Ian Drysdale, President, Zelis Payments

The U.S. continues to have amongst the highest healthcare costs in the world. The rate of increase may be slowing, but spending still rose 3.9% in 2017 and around 5% in 2018.

What can be done about rising expenses? In a world dominated by innovative technology, there should be ways to reduce costs.  There is – with electronic payments.

Healthcare Payments Landscape

For decades, healthcare payments have been paper-based with long explanations of benefits documents and reimbursement forms, envelopes and checks.  The paper check drawbacks add up with the time to:

  • Arrive
  • Open
  • Account for
  • Deposit
  • Clear

There is real expense in paper-based payments. According to an Association for Financial Professionals (AFP) survey, it can cost up to $75 to process a paper check.  Not only are checks costly, they are prone to problems such as getting lost in the mail and fraud, where criminals can forge a signature or alter a payment amount.  Yet checks remain a standard way of business!

There is good news. Technology has made its way into the payments realm.  As with any repetitive, administrative task, there’s tremendous potential for efficiency gains and cost savings just by using technology.

Automated Clearing House (ACH) makes sense, especially once you look at the benefits:

  • Lower Costs – lower fees than virtual cards + time savings (required admin work)

CAQH and NACHA provide these estimates:

  • $10.39: average amount providers save via ACH
  • 40 minutes: time providers save by automating key claims management processes
  • Increased Transparency – Payers and providers know almost immediately if the transaction was sent/received.
  • Better for the Environment – ACH cuts down on the total amount of paper used.
  • Improved Data Accuracy – There’s no chance for human error with direct transfers between banks.
  • Enhanced Security – Fewer hands involved can lead to less fraud.
  • Low Cost – Pricing for ACH is less than 2% and can be even more efficient with increased payment volumes.

Healthcare Payments Vendors: An Even Better Way to Use ACH

Recognizing the potential for ACH to become a new standard of doing business, Zelis Payments has taken ACH one step further.

With Zelis Payments, providers benefit from:

  • Shortened revenue cycle – payments can occur nine days faster than with paper checks
  • Improved data quality– detailed and error-free data directly from payer to provider
  • Increased accuracy– decreased manual entry
  • More choices– payment and data delivery options
  • Portal access – billing companies, providers and health systems can manage payments from multiple payers & payer groups from a single account
  • Certified for CAQH CORE®compliance – Zelis provides payments and reconciliation data that supports standardized adjustment codes and EFT/ERA re-association

The health insurance payments industry is changing – providers experience increased satisfaction with faster payments and payment transparency by using ACH.

Whether the benefit of speed, cost, accuracy or eco-friendliness appeal to you, adopting ACH, especially in conjunction with the support of payment services like Zelis Payments, will be the way of the future.