Q&A: Impact of COVID-19 on chargemaster approval processes

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Q: What impact has the COVID-19 public health emergency had on your chargemaster approval process? How did you adapt to chargemaster changes?

Alisha Rohrer, CPC, COC, CRCP-I, director of revenue integrity at WellSpan Health in York, Pennsylvania: We had a really good approach with lessons learned for future. We actually set up an incident command for revenue cycle. [We] normally have clinical incident command. We met at least two to three times a week and had anyone from VPs the whole way down to supervisors from all aspects of revenue cycle, registration, patient financial services, and our Epic team. So, there was a constant flow of information coming from the clinical teams to our Epic build team to the revenue cycle incident command center, and it was great because we were always in the know of what was happening on the clinical side and where we needed to react on the financial side and revenue cycle side. To this day, [we] will get a popup meeting to continue with that format if something comes through from one of our facilities or as an organizational structure.

Paula Twiss, supervisor of revenue integrity at Regional Health in Rapid City, South Dakota: We kind of did the same thing during the initial response to [the] pandemic: We were meeting with key people, keeping each other updated on different pieces and parts, [and assisting] with capacity changes in the event that we reached capacity. Our chargemaster was key in that we had working sessions set up to monitor and review our COVID-19 testing. And we even went looking at things by payer as far as reimbursement goes and monitored that. We had everybody helping within our revenue cycle team to make sure that we could be as successful as we could with all the changes that were happening.

Editor's note: This Q&A was excerpted from the 2021 State of the Revenue Integrity Industry Survey Report. See the full report to learn more about chargemaster approval processes and the impact of COVID-19 on revenue integrity departments.