Video | Billing Patients No-Show Fees
Medical Billing Tips Video Transcripts
Hi, my name is Manny Oliverez, Director of Operations here at Capture Billing, and today we are going to talk about charging no-show fees. Here at Capture, we get a lot of questions asking, “Should we charge for no-shows when a patient doesn’t show up?” Well, the answer to that is a resounding “Yes!” Charge those patients.
Let’s say you have a patient come in – well, actually, he doesn’t come in – and he misses his appointment. What happens to this doctor? Well, he’s just left twiddling his thumbs, and there is a vacant slot that could have been used for someone who is actually sick.
So, what we want to do is we want to charge the patient for not showing up as a negative reinforcement to not do that. So what are practices charging for no show fees? I’ve seen them charge anywhere from $10.00 to $25.00 for a sick visit, $50.00 to maybe $75.00 for a well check or physical exam, and I’ve seen them as high as $125.00 if they miss a procedure. That’s quite a bit of money, but you’re training your patient not to miss that appointment.
Now, how do we inform the patient about the no-show fees? Well, the best thing to do is, when they become a new patient, they should be signing a financial agreement with your practice. In that agreement you’re going to spell out that a missed appointment is $25.00, or whatever you want to charge. It depends on your practice, your specialty, what part of the country you’re in – whatever seems to be fair.
Spell that out, and also spell out how much notice they have to give you – how much notice in order to cancel that appointment. Whether it is 48 hours, or 24 hours, or just that day, it’s totally up to you, but make sure that they sign that agreement. Because what’s going to happen is when you charge them and send them out that bill, they are going to end up calling you and saying, “Hey, what are you doing charging me for this?” You can always refer back to that agreement.
Also, I would suggest the first time they miss an appointment, use it as an educational talk. Inform them why it is important to keep or cancel their appointment, and possibly even waive that first fee. Note it in the account, so that if it happens again, you will charge them. That’s what practices are doing, and it is okay to charge a no show fee.
Always check with your local regulations, your state, and your insurance companies to see how this all works out with them. Remember, a medical practice is a business. Treating it any other way is just nuts.
61 thoughts on “Medical Billing Tips: Charging Patients No-Show Fees”
Can a practice charge a no show fee for medicaid patients?
No it’s not Doctors make thousands of dollars from patients insurance.Having nothing to do for ten minutes isn’t going to hurt a doctor I will go to a new doctor if they ever try doing this to me.
Ashley you obviously do not work in a medical practice. If you say that doctors make thousands of dollars from patients insurance – when they no show – that’s thousands of dollars doctors are NOT making. A lot of time is set aside for a new patient, so it’s not just 10 minutes of the doctor’s time; it’s 30-60 minutes of the staff time as well.
He charged me 150.00 for being 15 minutes late. I left his office and started seeing another doctor. That is consider robbery.
I wouldn’t pay it. Was the fee in the fine print of anything that you signed? If not, you are not obligated to pay it.
What if a patient gets in an accident or has a family emergency?
There are a number of reasons why a person might not be able to show up on an appointment that they shouldn’t be punished and charged money for.
What about the times when you have an appointment when all the sudden it’s canceled because a doctor is sick or whatever, even though you’re already on your way to your appointment like my husband was just the other day. I don’t see any money being put back towards him or any free service coming.
I totally understand being charged but I have no idea if I signed something like that and they did not tell me I was being charged $400.00 each time until My lawyer settled with insurance then they show me a bill for $1.038.70 for 3 times and the Secretaries lawyers made My appointment with the doctor because it was they Doctor that the Lawyer sent me too for 2 Vista and 2 Mris was over $12,000 my pip paid and when I collected I had to pay almost $2 000 of my winnings
What about when the role is reversed? The doctor has a set appointment time to see a patient, with a “No-Show Fee” clearly posted. The patient waits for over an hour, and the dr. still hasn’t shown up? The patient’s time is also valuable. Not everyone can easily re-schedule another time at the dr.’s convenience. I am a Type 1 diabetic. My appt was set for 11:15, I arrived at 11:10, had my vitals taken. I waited. And waited. And waited. Over an hour later, well into the lunch period and with my blood sugar dropping, I walk out of the room. No one is around. Guess they were all gone to lunch. I told the receptionist that it is wrong (and rude) to keep patients waiting that long. If they knew the dr was behind schedule, they should have said something at the start. Can I send the dr. a bill for No-Show? I am a programmer, and I make substantially more than minimum wage. My time is extremely valuable, too.
I had an appointment with Dr. X (dentist)for 5/23. However, on 5/1, I changed my dentist. I did not notify the cancellation of the 5/23 appointment with Dr. X. Am I obliged to pay the no-show fee, since they’ve sent me the no-show bill? I was under the impression that I don’t have to tell them, since I was no longer their patient.
In all honesty, it’s respectful to call and cancel. If the shoe was on the other foot, and your dentist cancelled and you showed up after driving to the appointment, how would you feel? Disrespected right? Some places don’t overbook, and a no-show really hurts the practice financially.
However, the doctor can over book or no show and the patient is just out of luck. Most people don’t just not go because they don’t want to. I have PTSD and can be ready to go and have a full blown panic attack. Out of my control. And a psych doctor should understand that.
It’s unfair and can leave a patient on SSDI unable to return to get their medication because they can’t afford both.
Maybe someone should educate doctors about that.
I highly doubt they are just twiddling their thumbs. They are too busy counting their money.
And yet when the office calls and cancels the the appointment I made months ago, they don’t pay *me a penalty. Hey look, I’m sure the Doctor had a good reason for standing me up, but I have important things that come up too. Chronic no-shows absolutely merit a response, but once in a very blue moon events? I’ll need to find another doctor, thanks.
They already charge an arm and a leg to see these doctors.
I’ve been reading through the comments and most of the patients seem to think that the only reason the doctor is charging a late or no-show fee is to make more money. Sure, it is lost income but mostly I see it as being disrespectful to the doctor and other patients. I have a busy practice and there is a wait list. We try to schedule patients so that people are in and out without much wait. If a patient is late, it causes our schedule to be thrown off causing other patients to not be seen at their appointment time. If a patient is a no-show, that is a time that another patient could have been seen. I’m considering implementing a “late fee” or “no-show” fee, not extreme but as a reminder that patients need to call or let us know that they will be late or unable to keep their appointment. I can understand emergencies or that time you just forget. But we offer a reminder text service to notify patients of their upcoming appointment so they should be able to call then to cancel of let us know they are running late. It’s a matter of being considerate and respect other people.
What about a physician who lies about a missed appointment on a Date that has not arrived yet let’s say ummm 12/22/22.
What about fees that are not covered by Medicare? I am charged for talking with a nurse on the phone on a weekend about a medication prescribed by the practice that I was having trouble with. Although it is a small amount I am concerned about what other creative charges that practice will come up with that they do not inform their patients about. Interested to hear your take on this.
Can they legally bill me when I called them and made a appointment and they sent me the agreement paperwork in the mail and I called them and asked them if they were going to charge me 50dollars for not showing up and they said yes and I told I would find another dentist and didn’t sign the paperwork and didn’t send it back and they are sending bills to me and even had a lawyer send me a bill do I have pay this legally and they don’t know it’s me and can they get trouble for harrassment
My granddaughter has medicaid. I’m her guardian and I forgot about a follow up visit she had. When I called to reschedule they stated I had to pay a $25 no show fee. I do know Indiana doesn’t allow doctors to bill medicaid clients for this. My question is, if I signed a paper stating I’d pay what medicaid doesn’t, am I responsible for this? Should I call them back and try another way to resolve this? I’m a single grandmother raising an 8 year old and a 10 year old by myself without support from my son or the mother. Simply put, money is tight. And if I’m being honest, at 56 years old keeping up with everything the girls have going on gets me a little frazzled sometimes.
What about charging a “No Show” fee for a telemed visit. Technically, the physician is not left twiddling thumbs as they move on to the next patient. Patients are given an “appt time” but they do not get called within that time, they are told the physician will call you on/around or after this time frame, be available.
I’ve been charged a “no show” fee of $300.00 to rebook a test. I had to be at hospital at 6:30am. I called and left message at doctors office the evening before telling them why I could not be there. I was sick. I explained to them how I was ill. But they went ahead and charged the “no show” fee that I can’t afford to pay.
You say this is the doctor training the patient to show up for appointments. The only thing this has taught me is not to accept appointments from specialists who only think in black and white. And also think they need to “train” patients about anything. I’d like to be able to charge doctors a fee who are consistently behind schedule by an hour, hour and a half and don’t acknowledge it when you finally do get in.
Patient Who Wont Be Going To This Specialist
So how do I go about charging the Doctor’s office for failing to keep my appointment time or failing to send medical records or prescriptions on time. Why should a doctor be able to charge me for the same thing they do to their patients ? No treating your patients like a cash cow destroys the Dr patient relationship. Penny rich equals dime stupid
I called to make an appointment with my endocrinologist today after pharmacy called in a prescription. I noticed he only gave me a one month refill. So, I realized I must be due for an app. Big shock when I called, I was informed I was a “no show” in August! I’m 66 and this has never happened to me before. My husband is severely disabled and had a lot of issues and apps. this year. They also scheduled me a year ahead last yr. for this app.!!! And they used to give courtesy calls. I apologized, explained about husband, mentioned no courtesy call. Was told that’s a convenience not always given!!! WHAT, after all the BS of the last year, they quit giving courtesy calls for an app. made ONE yr. out! I informed her I wouldn’t be scheduling 1 yr. out anymore. Was informed the Dr. is hard to see and booked 9 months out, even though she just booked me a new app. for 9/23/21! That’s fine, I’ll call January 2022 for my next app. He’s really not worth it anyway. I’m still hypothyroid after being his patient for 7 yrs.! If they bill me I’m gone! I say, “hasta la vista baby”, you have yet to do your job with me anyway! I’ll be better off with a new endo. All he does is fill scripts for me. I can get that from my GP. And he’s not the only endocrinologist around.
I’m a therapist and I’m an independent contractor at an agency. If clients no show on me, I don’t get paid.
I do all of the “things”, I send emails introducing myself reminding them of the appointment time, reminding them to fill out the paperwork prior to our 1st session, & have them sign the financial agreement twice to make sure that they know it exists and they understand it.
To no avail.
Everyone gets a freebie on their 1st no show or late cancelation – and after that they still get mad if they’re charged when they’ve had multiple no shows & are having a pattern of this behavior. “Emergencies” are a vague construct.
I have one client booked for every hour of my day and a no show or a late cancelation not only means that I’m not getting paid for that hour, it means that I’m sitting there doing nothing for that hour.
For those complaining that this is inappropriate – yes, the American health care system is in disarray and in a perfect world we would be in a single payer system where we would get paid our fair value no matter what. But that’s not reality.
My clients have not only the office number, but my email and my work cell phone number that they could call or text or email me to let me know even the night before if there was a situation.
This is the most fucked up thibg to read, literally saying you need to train people to show up by corruptly taking their money? Disgusting
What about if you have a tragic family emergency.. such as what happened to my family. One of our close family members committed suicide. We had no prior idea this would happen and we’re devastated and could barely think or breathe let alone think about a dentist appointment . Now we get double slammed wit a 75.00 missed appointment fee.! It’s like throwing salt in our wounds. I was so disappointed I will never go back to that dental practice again. Sometimes life happens to people that we can’t control. How about some compassion. I’m a nurse.. RN.. I work in the medical field. Stuff like this makes me wonder why I chose this job. Take care of patients??? That’s a joke. It’s take care of money!
I have been charged a $ 25 .00 Late fee for a missed appointment. is this legal ? I have Madicare Advantage.
I went to the a doctor for the first time. I refused to sign the form. They refused treatment. I left. This means they lost my income for that visit which would have been in excessive of $100 (likely closer to $200) for the chance that they could charge me $50 in the future if I miss an appointment. Doesn’t seem to make sense to me. One new few they wanted to charge was $5 for each monthly balance statement they send to me. Healthcare is confusing, complicated, and down right a pain. For a doctor who is making good money already to charge these fees – Simply ridiculous. Frequently I have scheduled an appointment, arrived on time and sat in the waiting room for 30 minutes. I refuse to do that anymore. I leave after 15 minutes. My time is as important as the doctor. Will the office charge me the “no show fee?” Or could I charge the $50 fee for them to not see me at the scheduled time?
Hi I’m an independent contractor for occupational therapy at a rehab clinic I’m scheduled to work 40 hours a week but with no shows I only end up getting paid fir about 20 hours of that but I’m at work the entire 40hours. This is due to no shows and cancelations. Example: I have patients from 11-6pm; 11-2pm show for appointment and 2-5 no show. I have to wait around til 6 for my last appointment doing nothing. It’s very stressful. Why can’t we charge insurance company’s for those cancelations. I’m located in Florida Orlando.
Insurance companies will never pay for no-shows. You can charge the patient patients if they have signed a financial agreement saying they would be responsible for $XX amount. Also, is the front desk calling and confirming appointments the day before? That helps reduce no-shows.
Well my opinion is as follows,…. the doctor in my case didn’t help the problem I was having and still have to contain with. And never took the time to let questions be discussed! Over booking of appointments is the reason with the time of 15 minutes for each patient. Now I ask is this the right thing to do? And the answer is absolutely not!…. my forgetting an appointment should not warrant a 35 dollar charge when I haveybeen properly attended to due to greed!!
Anna I would call the office and ask if they would waive the fee since you had never missed an appointment before. I know several of our practices will forgive the first instance.
My question is this, I made an apt for dermatology over the phone and was never informed of a no show fee. They never sent an email, text message, or phone call confirming the visit or the no show fee. And it was nearly two months out, so I forgot about it. Normally my dr, therapy, chiropractor, etc all either send a text or leave a voicemail confirming the voicemail at least 48 hrs in advance, so I was surprised that I received the bill in the mail, yet nothing to confirm the apt.
I’m looking for guidance.
My daughter had a scheduled sleep study in November at a sleep center in NC. She ended up having a high fever that Friday afternoon into the weekend. I called this office and left several messages to let them know I would have to reschedule, following state guidelines for covid.
I never received any calls back. The office never even called me to confirm the appointment and I didn’t sign any paperwork. I just received a bill from here, stating I have to pay a $150 no show fee. Insurance told me I was under no obligation to pay this and the doc couldn’t place a claim for the services either.
My question is, can they actually charge me for this? Considering she had a fever, she is already high risk for covid-19. But no one called me back, confirmed the appointment, and I never signed any paperwork? I didn’t even set foot into the office.
I have a question regarding such fees in the event of a life threatening emergency beyond a patience control.
If your doctor charged you a no-show fee, just give them a call and explain the situation. I find that most practices will be forgiving if it has not been a habit in the past. Most but not all practices.
I signed one of those contracts but yet today, I had a scheduled phone visit with the doctor at 10:00 a.m., 10:00 a.m. At past 10:15 a.m. I call the doctor’s office. The office said they cancel my appointment without giving me notice. I should be able to charge them $50 for the cancelation and without notice. If I promiser breaks the contract doesn’t he have to pay the promisee the $50. It’s a 2 way street not of one way.
David, unfortunately, it’s not a two ways street. It’s very frustrating I know. I have been canceled on too. It’s a big waste of time.
If you take a real close look at what you signed I bet you will see that only the doctor can charge. Sorry.
To Isabel 1/2 of what you said is not true. I audit doctors, time, bills, etc. One they don’t do their own dictation, made in the 60s now someone does that for them Or they computer does it as they are speaking. I don’t know what doctor office you go to, but mine closes down at lunch and they go. All the ones I have audit close for lunch and they go eat, no seeing patients. So yes my time is just as valuable. I shouldn’t have to sit and wait 2 hours after scheduled to be seen. There is no excuse with technology, refill a prescription takes one click of a button and it off the pharmacy. Charging for no shows is BS. I don’t get to charge them when they don’t show up.
For those of you that have commented that they have to wait so long in the lobby for the doctor I ask them to be honest with themselves about how many times they have taken up more than their assigned time with the doctor. Most Internist and Family Practice offices schedule appointments every 15-20 min. The patient will spend more time in the office because there is paperwork to fill out with each visit, the nurse or Medical Assistant will then “work the patient up” by getting their vitals, reviewing their medication sheet and asking for the chief complaint. The chief complaint, here in lies the problem, patients schedule the appointment to review their lab results or another test or because they have a new complaint, its never that simple. The doctor goes over the patient’s lab and then the patient says they didn’t take their medication last week and now they can’t poop and their hemorrhoids hurt really bad when they strain and what should they do? The doctor spends another 10 minutes with them and then they say oh and by the way I forgot to tell the nurse I need a refill on my blood pressure medication and can I have a muscle relaxant because I hurt my back getting out of the car and on and on and the nurse finally has to knock on the door to rescue the doctor after 45 minutes. And that one patient has thrown the whole morning schedule off but it doesn’t stop there because he/she is not the only patient that thinks the doctor works for them. So the doctor see patients through the 2 hour lunch break and is luck to go to the bathroom before he starts back seeing patients at 2pm. But it doesnt stop there for the doctor because after he sees the last patient of the day, who leaves the office at 6:30pm with all his questions answered, the doctor is stuck with hours of dictation and charting to do before he can go home to eat a cold dinner. So to all those patients that say the doctor keeps them waiting I say stick to the topic when you go to the doctor and respect his time. And to all of those patients that dont have the courtesy to call to cancel their appointment shame on you your mother raised you better than that!
What about being charged a $25 no show fee when the Doctors Office is always “busy assisting other callers” when you try to call them, and too busy to return your voicemails to cancel and reschedule the appointment? I had a Doctors Office charge me $25 for a no show fee when I tried cancelling the appointment 5 times. Each time I called it was during normal business hours and I waited 10 minutes in queue before being redirected to their voicemail, gave all my information and nobody ever returned my call. The only call I received from them was a robocall reminding me of the appointment 2 days before, not a live person. This call alerted me that they never got my voicemails to cancel and reschedule. So this robocall was at 7pm at night. So I call the office right away and I get redirected to their after hours line and I actually get to speak to a live person! Except this person does not take messages for the office or have access to their appointment schedule and cannot cancel your appointment or reschedule it. For that you have to call during normal business hours where you will be told that they are too busy assisting other callers and leave a voicemail that goes unanswered. So they make you sign an agreement as a new patient that informs you that you will be billed $25 for a no show fee if you miss an appointment. All the while the office staff is so busy, so overwhelmed with patients and patient phone calls, that they can’t answer the phones or check their voicemails and respond to them. Yet, they have plenty of time to bill you. This fee sounds like a scam to me and I will not pay it.
Is there a website that specifically states Meducare Dr. Policies in state of Mo. On no show fees? I was charged $50 as a new patient seeing a psychiatrist for PTSD ANXIETY. Missed aot. Because was burglarized that day. Has to pay $50. Then two weeks later had to go back in via recommendariin of A RAPE KIT nurse at local hospital. Attacked and raped by tennent iņ same building Extreme anxiety. Dr. Only took 2 minutes with me as usual. He never listens to me if meds work or not. It was tume for med refill apt. He said mske another apt for that. Well Im sorry. I missed it to. My phone broken. But wull take responsibility and PAY. Just seems like a run around. Enough emotional trauma. Rape,by another tennent, who is still allowed to reside here.every time I leave myÀpt Someone robs me.So I have great anxiety about even leaving.The management didnt take me seriously, then I get raped. He knows this but acts like he could care less. I feel like its patient profiling. I fully understand yiur point of view. If a patient is too kazy, but what do you do when the Dr or staff refuse to take into account there are circumstances beyond yiur control? Thank you
Hi! What about opposite? If you showed up for the appointment but the doctor or nurse failed to check in advance if they have necessary medication to do the simple procedure. You end up going home. That happen to me today. I wasted three hours because had to wake up earlier to be on time, driving to doctor’s office, back to home, looking for parking.
This is BS. I got charged a No show fee even though I showed up to my appointment but the doctor was 4 hours behind. I had to go back to work. The same thing is happening to my sister today. Save the “train your patients” rhetoric and call it what it is. A scam.
today i had an appointment with my eye dr, i been going to this dr. for the last 26 years and i have not miss any appt. when a arrive to the office the staff office gave me the policy of the no show appts. that this practice change in the last year. and he is charging $100 for no show appts. that is quite bit of money,and when i told him that i did agree with his policy he got very upset and started yelling at me. and said ” IF YOU DO NOT AGREE YOU CAN LEAVE MY OFFICE” he did not have a sent of loyalty or respect.
Yes, i left and i will never come back to this doctor aging. and I’m writing a review
If a patient misses an appointment well i’m sorry. How about about anyone can charge a fee just because the cable guy did not show up and i’m being charged for a day of program i didn’t use for example. Charging patient should not be legal. I guess i could charge the doctor for sitting in lobby an hour past my appointment. What doctors tend to forget is they work for me, employers have never waited on employees. This fee is a big scam in my opinion. Its the nature of any business. Get over it.
I understand that doctors can legally charge their patients a “no show” penalty fee. Many doctors do that and many don’t. But whether or not they engage in such a practice, aren’t doctors required by law to first inform their patients, either verbally or in writing, about their “No Show” fee policy?
I was recently referred to see an eye specialist for a sty in my left eye by my regular doctor who gave me the phone number to the specialist’s office for me to call and schedule an appointment, which I did. During the time I spent on the phone making my appointment, I was never informed of the doctor’s “no show” fee policy. Of course, because the appointment was made over the phone, and because I had never been to the doctor’s office yet, nothing was provided to me in writing, either, about the doctor’s “No Show” policy.
My appointment to see the eye doctor was scheduled about a month and one week from the time that I called the office to make the appointment, which was the earliest date available, according to the doctor’s office. About two weeks before my scheduled appointment, the company through which I received my government-sponsored free cell phone dropped out of the program, so I lost use of my cell phone and could not call the specialist’s office to cancel my appointment ~ my sty by then had been healed by using home-remedy cures.
Today, I just received a “no show” bill in the amount of $45 from the eye doctor’s office!
Had I been informed of the doctor’s “No Show” fee policy when I initially called to make the appointment, I would have driven the 5 miles to the doctor’s office to cancel the appointment, but since I was given no notice I didn’t think it was necessary.
Hello Kioshi —
You will need to talk to a lawyer in your state to see if doctors are required to inform their patients either verbally or in writing about their “No Show” fee policy.
Now that said, let me tell you what doctors should do and what I would do.
When you start seeing a new doctor there is new patient paperwork that the office has you fill out. Included somewhere in that paperwork should be their No Show Policy stating the fees and when you would be charged. The practice usually has you sign the paperwork to acknowledging that you agree with the policy. Of course if you do not agree with the no show policy or any other policy the practice has you don’t have to sign but you will have to find another doctor as they will probably not see you since you are not an established patient yet.
Now I too have a problem with being charged when I was not told or signed a document agreeing to a fee when I am a new patient and have not been to the office. I don’t believe it’s the right thing to do.
I have come across medical offices that ask for a credit card on file for new patients prior to making an appointment. If you don’t show up they then would charge you their no show fee. I personally do not like that practice and move on and find another doctor.
However, I have the responsibility to cancel the appointment thus freeing up the appointment slot given to me so that another person in need of medical attention could use it and not have to wait 5 weeks for an appointment as you did. I would pay the $45.
How about the customer/client whose waiting for an hours at the doctors office if the doctor/professional didnt show up??? all they could say was “Oh,sorry I was late or the doctor counldnt make it” this happened to me several time, waste of time and gas, doctors are sometimes unprofessional, customer/client should reimbursed for inconvenient too, not only doctors or professional who didnt showed up right? so biased practices….
It’s great that we have access to doctors and it’s great that there is no timer that goes off where the doctor says I’m sorry your times up. So, as long as my doctor continues to take his time and doesn’t rush thru my visit and miss something then I will gladly wait an extra hour. I also know his policy is to waive the first no show fee. Our country has become complacent and want everything handed to them.
Wonderful! So simple. Thanks for the info, you made it easy to understand.
You are correct in telling the viewers to double check with an attorney, or other legal professional. The wording of these provisions is extremley important. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve received a last minute call that the Dr. had to cancel their appointment. Or, what ever happened to basic courtesy in an Office. When checking in, it really would be nice to still know how many mins., (ballpark estimate) it might be before I see my Dr? This was a common practice not so long ago.
Now, in legal circles there is a common tenet, In order to impose such a fee or provision, the provider or office..MUST have “clean hands” in legal circles. In other words, if they are always running late, i.e. where the patient may sign in for a (2) 14:00 pm appt., but not ever see their Dr. until (2:30) 14:30 pm or later, this sort of penalty charge, the likelyhood this fee will not hold up in a small claims courtroom. Plus, Dr will come across in a very negative way. This is the feedback I hear all the time in offices.
(What’s good for the goose is good for the gander is what I hear.) I actually know an attorney who became so fed up, he left the Dr’s office and sent them a bill for his time wasted sitting there after (60) sixty minutes. Which sometimes one wonders if the employees are properly trained in setting up appts. in the first place. Too many offices are scheduling too many patients since the fees reimbursed to the physicians have been reduced in many different practices. Some providers are attempting to make up in volume instead and are actually killing their practices. Personally, I always delete the wording in those agreements then sign my name. (It’s my legal right to refuse.) Some offices need to plan their pt appts better. Incidentally, Yes, I have run the front end of more than one practice, I am aware of the many interruptions, problems that arise in the daily operations of an office. (These offices had > (4) providers.)
Interesting conversation otherwise.
You are crazy if you think a doctor is sitting there twiddling there thumbs. In my experience most patients wait on average 30 mins after their initial appointment time to see the doctor. I have been in the healthcare business for 20 plus years and the abuse that goes on is ridiculous. This so called no show fee should not apply to your regular patients. So to advocate draining people for more money is horrible. Sorry if they doctor cant have that extra cup of coffee at Starbucks, trust me they are not hurting.
Can a doctor charge a no show fee when he is doing an outpatient procedure at a surgical center?
In my opinion I don’t see why not as long as the patient had signed a form agreeing to the fee ahead of time. If it is a Medicare or Medicaid patient then I would not charge the fee.
Does this apply to Medi-Medi and/or Medicaid only beneficiaries?
Steve you should have no problem billing no show fees to patients with commercial insurance. However Medicare and Medicaid have their own rules which usually means you can’t bill a patient for no show fees. We never bill but double check with your local carriers. If a patient consistently no shows you may be able to dismiss the patient. Just do it properly.
So as a patient, I have been charged twice for no shows. Each time I refused to pay plus I will NEVER return. I guess if you don’t want my business and you have too much already, go for it. But I will never return to your business and will not recommend seeing you again.
Seriously….. How many times has a doctor just “sat twiddling his thumbs?” Offices overly schedule “slots” with so many patients the patient is the one who sits waiting. Do you knock a $25 to $50 discount for the hour or so that a patient sits waiting in your office? I did not think so. These fees are absurd and another reason physicians and billers are looked at with disgust whining about money
How do you charge a new patient that is a no-show? If you send them a bill, they won’t pay it and you will ensure that that patient never reschedules. Any suggestions? Or when you get the patient info do you also request that they keep a credit card on file?
Sharon it is very difficult to charge a new patient for a no-show. Our practices do one of two things:
1. Don’t do anything but will not make another appointment if the patient calls back;
2. Take a credit card but only for a higher priced procedure.
As management you walk a fine line between alienating a new patient by asking for a credit card and running your business but you need to decide what’s best overall.