"The way that providers interact with patients when it comes to billing and collection is a critical aspect of health care practice," said Rich McKeown, president and CEO of Leavitt Partners. "For providers, it's a business process, but for patients, it's personal. A comprehensive set of American National Standards - which are developed by consensus of all affected parties - will assure that providers rely on agreed-upon best practices, that consumers are treated fairly, and that sensitive patient data is protected."
Leavitt Partners has selected the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to serve as a "Trusted Advisor" for the PBSCP. ANSI accredits standards developing organizations (SDOs) and approves their documents as American National Standards according to the Institute's Essential Requirements for openness, balance, consensus, and due process in standards development. In addition, the Institute has a long history of convening cross-sector standards coordination work, with current activities in electric vehicles, energy efficiency, homeland security, nanotechnology, nuclear energy, and identity theft.
"When it comes to patient billing and collection, the time is right for a coordinated assessment of the standards and conformity assessment solutions that the marketplace has developed, or needs to develop," said S. Joe Bhatia, ANSI president and CEO. "Relying upon American National Standards to meet these needs demonstrates Leavitt Partners' commitment to an inclusive, consensus-based process. ANSI is honored to be a part of the Patient Billing and Collection Standards Project, and we look forward to close collaboration with public- and private-sector stakeholders to bring this effort to fruition."
The PBSCP will be led by an Advisory Panel to be chaired by Governor Michael O. Leavitt. A Steering Committee and issue-focused Task Groups will identify existing standards and gaps, and will prioritize areas where standards are needed. The PBSCP will then assess and partner with ANSI-accredited SDOs to identify existing standards or develop new American National Standards that fulfill the goals of the project. The project will also include an analysis and recommendation of appropriate conformity assessment activities to demonstrate fulfillment of standards requirements.
The PBSCP Steering Committee will include representation from a diverse range of interest categories, including hospitals, trade associations, consumer groups, companies providing billing and collection services, government agencies, insurance companies, labor/union groups, and certification bodies.
The body of American National Standards will be expected to address all aspects of billing and collection interactions between health care providers and patients, contain guides for implementation and execution, and reflect recent transformations in the health care industry. At a minimum, the standards should address in-patient care, ambulatory care, emergency room care, and physician services.