WHAT IS A HEALTHCARE BPO?
The healthcare BPO market is broadly segmented into the type of healthcare services outsourced into provider services, payer services, and pharmaceutical services. The provider services segment is further segmented into medical billing, medical coding, medical transcription, and finance and accounts. Doctors, clinics and hospitals all over the world hire people just the do these jobs for them. Not surprising as many medical professionals who are providing the actual health care are quite busy with their usual tasks, with many not having enough time to actually go through the details of doing the transcription, coding and/or billing. But even though these aren’t part of their core duties, these tasks are still very important. Without records, taking care of patients can be problematic especially if information is missing or taken down incorrectly. Enter Healthcare BPO. Staying true to the original BPO idea of outsourcing non-essential but still important activities to another party.
A HEALTHCARE BPO AGENT
The people handling these types of tasks must have a firm idea of the medical industry (there’s a lot of jargon and understanding what the various terms mean could make a big difference in the way the information is being recorded); have undergone extensive medical coding training (one mistake could have serious repercussions especially to a patient’s treatment); and, they must be meticulous to detail (for example, when it comes to billing—if bills are done wrong or with mistakes this is a reflection on the clinic and/or hospital).
SNAPSHOT OF STATS IN THE PHILIPPINES
- According to the Everest Group (2014) the Philippines has the largest nursing talent pool with the ideal blend of medical knowledge and compatible customer service interaction (as they have strong voice English skills and have a cultural affinity and understanding with western health care).
- As of 2014, there were more than 60,000 full-time employees who were also medical professionals and mostly nurses. This was the equivalent of a 47% rise in the BPO industry. In 2015, healthcare outsourcing in the Philippines has about 87,000 workers, $3 billion USD in annual revenues, and the faster growth rate at 30%. The healthcare outsourcing segment is expecting to hire an additional 100,000 new workers this year (Sourcefit ,2016).
- The Healthcare Information Management Outsourcing Association of the Philippines (HIMOAP) in September 2016, will be holding an international conference with the theme: “Global Convergence enabling inclusive care and innovation”. This will feature top health advisors as well as international experts that will talk about the trends in health care system, healthcare solutions and the convergence of global market and local services and serves as a venue for industry players, training institutions, vendors, other stakeholders, and the larger business community to identify key factors and programs that will contribute to positioning the Philippines as the leading destination for quality healthcare information management services.
WHY SET UP A HEALTHCARE BPO IN THE PHILIPPINES?
Other than their strong medical background, not to mention grasp of the English language and Western Culture, one of the main benefits of doing so, certainly, would be the cost-effectiveness. In a chart provided by Business World (2016) they demonstrate the cost differences.