Healthcare professionals have long recognized the need for a unique and absolute patient identifier and to move away from dependence on inaccurate demographics. Demographic data errors or inconsistencies expose providers and patients to clinical and financial risk. AHIMA estimates the average cost of patient misidentification at $100 per incident with some medical informatics experts estimating the cost as high as $3,500 per account; this cost includes both administrative and clinical costs associated with the error.
Additionally, three percent of healthcare costs in the U.S., or $78 billion, can be attributed to medical fraud. Medical fraud can occur when a patient uses the identification of another to access care using another person’s health benefits, when providers fraudulently bill payers for patients not seen, or when providers bill for services not provided.
The costs of medical fraud echo throughout the healthcare system beyond the price of the fraudulent claims. Providers spend countless hours correcting and settling claims with payers in cases of medical identity fraud, incurring more expense on both sides, and typically must write-off balances associated with these accounts. Patients who are victims of identity theft find their credit ruined, their benefits exhausted, and the accuracy of their medical records compromised. Not only will adoption of technology such as Privasent enhance patient safety, it has the potential to save millions of dollars in healthcare costs.
Privasent eliminates medical identity fraud by requiring absolute Privasent identification at each healthcare encounter and providing a record of each time a patient has checked in for care. Privasent verifications authenticate that the patient was present and received care eliminating the possibility of identity theft coupled with fraudulent billings.