Staffing Payment Posting

June 1, 2004

Is it better to have one person post all charges or should some of the charges be entered at check-out as the manpower is available?

Question: Is it better to have one person post all charges or should some of the charges be entered at check-out as the manpower is available?

Answer: It's more efficient to have the charges posted in "real-time" - that is, as the patient is leaving. But this really is a staffing issue. Who has the time and who is better at posting? Charge entry must be done 100 percent correctly. Nothing less can be tolerated because the claim will be denied with even the slightest error.

The best way that I've seen it done is for check-out to post the outpatient charges, and then a member of the billing staff prints the charge report - to a printer or just to the screen - and reviews all of the codes before sending it out. Normally, a designated charge keyer in the billing office is doing the inpatient charge entry because he is better able to track admits, discharges, and hospital days.