On this episode of The Modern Practice Podcast, host Gary Tiratsuyan is joined by Alanna Vose, Practice Solutions Consultant at Rectangle Health, to discuss the most common challenges healthcare practices face in growing as a business. Alanna gives insight into how she helps overcome these obstacles using technology, to strengthen the financial and operational health of the offices she works with.
During the conversation, Alanna provides her unique perspective and a look into her first hand experience in consulting healthcare providers to overcome their biggest pain points, including navigating staffing shortages.
She also shares how Rectangle Health’s software, Practice Management Bridge® (PMB) has been integral to providers using it, to automate administrative tasks, increase payment capture, and help treat more patients.
Gary Tiratsuyan: Hello, everybody, and welcome back to the Modern Practice podcast! Joining us today is Alanna Vose, a Practice Solutions Consultant at Rectangle Health. I’m really excited for this discussion as Alana is on the front lines, helping practices simplify the business side of care every day. We’re going to be discussing some of the most common challenges these practices face in growing as a business and how they overcome them using modern methods and solutions and, ultimately, strengthen their financial health.
Alanna, welcome to the show.
Alanna Vose: Thanks, Gary. I’m excited to be here.
Gary Tiratsuyan: Awesome. Well, let’s get into it…Can you give us a little bit of background on your experience at Rectangle Health…what makes this organization and the solution we provide special in your mind?
Alanna Vose: Yeah, awesome. A bit about me: I went to school thinking I wanted to be a physicist. I’ve always been involved kind of in the healthcare sector. But after I graduated undergrad, I really wanted to get out and start working. I got into the medical sales field right away. But I’ve always been on the more clinical vertical of things. And I was living in Wisconsin after school and looking for a way to get back to where my roots are in Maine. At that time, I had a Rectangle Health recruiter reach out to me to come build a territory throughout Maine and New Hampshire. I had no experience in the admin space or technology, or finance. I was extremely hesitant to even interview for the position. However, I did. And I absolutely loved the vibe I got from every single person I interviewed with. And I really needed a change in my life. I just went for it.
And then I went to my train in Valhalla, New York, two weeks before the global pandemic when the world was experiencing a complete, unprecedented time.” Now I was like, “Oh, my gosh, what did I just do? How am I going to build a territory when every single healthcare office is shut down?” But I’m here almost three years later, and I haven’t looked back because sometimes, with chaos comes innovation. And the pandemic has really transformed the way healthcare has looked at the business side of things. Our solution is really sought after. And I’ve made it and am still here for three years.
Biggest Pain Points and Challenges for Practices
Gary Tiratsuyan: And we are definitely happy to have you. And thank you so much for that, Alana. And as I mentioned, you’re out there every day speaking of practices across a range of care specialties. So your perspective is unique. I want to ask you when a practice closes for the day, the lights are out, and the day’s work is done. What would you say are the biggest pain points and challenges they’re thinking about as they look ahead to the next day?
Alanna Vose: Yeah, I would say they probably say, “did I get everything done?” I think the most common pain point I see, especially since the pandemic, is the issue of being understaffed. Office staff, they’re wearing multiple hats around their respective practices and just didn’t have enough time in the day to get every single thing needed to run a business. One of the most recent clients I set up a couple of weeks ago told me on the day I went to help them implement our solution that their billing manager worked a 13-hour day the day before because one of their patient coordinators was without sick, and they didn’t have the coverage. She had to cover the front of the office and get her daily duties done to run a business. And you know, that’s exhausting. And I think, to add to that office has yet to implement technology that will aid in administrative workflow. That can be an additive stressor on staff members who are already wearing multiple hats in the office. And then lastly, Gary, one of the things Rectangle Health has always done best is help implement tools that alleviate the pain points of not getting paid timely. I’d say understaffing and administrative inefficiencies are the hand-in-hand pain points. I see it every day in my conversations.
Gary Tiratsuyan: Yeah, and that’s definitely a national challenge that’s being faced by healthcare, but also it in multiple other verticals and the retail space. It’s definitely everywhere. And I think that’s a perfect segue into the next question. I want to give our listeners a visual of the after-effect on the practice as a business when you guide them through implementing Practice Management Bridge®. And I want to note that this solution specifically is all-encompassing. The practice reputation, reviews, appointment scheduling, payments, compliance, and cybersecurity are all within the solution, and it’s transformative. So, what does that do for the staff and the practice as a whole?
How Practice Management Bridge Helps Healthcare Staff
Alanna Vose: Yeah, great question. I’d say after a practice has implemented our solution; I personally usually follow up after they have started utilizing it. And more often than not, I hear, quote, unquote, how did I not operate with this type of solution beforehand? Seriously.
And I’d say, you know, we take the time as consultants to actually learn how our clients are currently operating. And throughout our entire offerings, we find where our many tools will help, you know, streamline their workflow, life easier for their staff and their patients. And most importantly, we’re trying to help find ways to increase their bottom line while also consolidating vendors within our one solution, Practice Management Bridge. I thought I’d give a couple of examples that actually come up way more often than we’d think. One of my favorite stories to tell a little over a year ago was when offices were still operating with no waiting room operations. I was out and about just leaving business cards and flyers with sincere handwritten notes in office mailboxes. And this particular dental office that signed up with us called me back almost instantly when I left a flyer highlighting the benefits of just online payment and Text-to-Pay. The office manager was like, Alanna, we’re so understaffed, we send out about 250 to 300 invoices a month to our patients, but the only way they can pay us is to call the office or send in a check. Or they just wait until they’re seen again. So long story short, we did an actual return on investment calculation, where we calculated what they were paying for postage, and how long it took to collect those balances. The staff time used to collect and manually enter in all those payments. And then, we estimated how much more they could potentially bring in if they started utilizing a system that was automated, digital, and would allow patients to have so much more convenience. So, I estimated all that. And we estimated to bring in about $50,000 more a month for them. They’re like, “No, Alanna, that can’t be right.” I’m like, “Come on, try it. Let’s track it for the next year.” Yeah, I have been tracking it for about a year now. And they’re bringing in about $160,000 more a month than before they started using our Practice Management Bridge solution. So pretty amazing.
Gary Tiratsuyan: Did you say $160,000 more a month?
Alanna Vose: I sure did!
Gary Tiratsuyan: So, we’ve surpassed the $50,000 mark. And that’s great.
Alanna Vose: And then some!
Gary Tiratsuyan: So, what stands out to me, you know, as you were talking, is the consultative approach. You know, the handwritten note. And to me, when I look at rectangle as an organization, it’s very tight, very close-knit, like family.
And the fact that you know, you and others are taking a moment to handwrite a note at a time, that’s extremely difficult for coming out of COVID, coming out of time where there was no waiting room. The extra steps that you take and that our team takes really is a difference maker. And then, you know, that attitude and the way that we treat our clients, combined with the solution. It’s just a better experience for the practice on top of all the gain, you know, the $160,000 extra that you mentioned, so it’s really incredible to hear that from your perspective.
Alanna Vose: Yeah, for sure. I think you hit the nail on the head there. We’re consultants, like all of us, on my team; at least, we take the time to learn like we’re not going to push a solution on you if it’s not meant for you. We want to learn how you’re operating and see if there’s any room for enhancement.
The Implementation Process
Gary Tiratsuyan: As far as implementation, what does that process look like? Because I’m sure, there’s a concern about taking on new tech and potentially disrupting business. Is that an issue?
Alanna Vose: Yeah, so great question. I think, especially with the nationwide staffing shortage, any type of change, new technology, or the thought of disrupting others is a concern; we always ensure the client knows our implementation process step by step and knows that it’s not a disruptive process whatsoever. We always identify what day of the week and timeframe works best for them, so we aren’t disrupting their day-to-day workflow. I always let them know that the first 20 or 30 minutes of implementation, our tech is really just going to be in the background, just installing our system on their computers so that they can go on with their day-to-day. And then, the last half of the implementation, they’re going to be trained, whether it’s with an on-site rep like myself or if it’s a remote with our tech team, they’re fabulous. And I think the really cool part about our system, too, is that after their training, our Practice Management Bridge has modules just embedded in our system. If they need instructions later on, on compliance, engagement, financing, or whatever it may be, we have step-by-step guides within the system that they can just easily click on and re-review after the training. And then the last thing I think that is super huge that my clients love is that we have a 24/7 Support tab where they can actually click and chat with a tech member if there are any questions or if they need any type of support. We have people who can just remote in and help on the spot. So super big. I think that’s a big differentiator with us.
Gary Tiratsuyan: That’s amazing. I just want to call out that 24/7 support; you’re not chatting with a robot. That is an actual human being on the phone with you, helping you and guiding you through whatever issue it may be. And it’s really good to hear and reinforcing to hear that you don’t bring on Practice Management Bridge, and you’re left to your own accord. There is training, and there’s constant support from consultants like you, from support members from in-house at our headquarters, and of course, the tech team. And before we go on, I just want to give our listeners an opportunity to see firsthand the effects of implementing Practice Management Bridge, like you said, that return on investment, seeing that revenue growth, seeing those payments come in, and the accounts payable decrease. And all it takes is five minutes; you just answer a few questions and find out how quickly and efficiently this solution captures those payments, automates and reduces repetitive manual work, and improves the patient experience. A link to that questionnaire can be found in the description of this episode.
So last question here, Alanna. If you don’t mind, can you share a reaction or a response that sort of moved you in your time at Rectangle Health, like working with healthcare heroes? Does anyone or a few instances really stand out?
Alanna Vose: 100% that first example I gave where I did that return-on-investment calculation with one of my dental clients, and then it actually coming to life. And then they came back to me and said that since implementing our solution that helped with their biggest pain point, which was their accounts receivable, they now have some extra funds to invest in things like a new staff member, marketing, and new technology for their practice to innovate. That the client that has resonated with me the most in my tenure here and a story I share very frequently among like my other meetings.
This is a story that makes me believe in the solution that I’m actually out here promoting every single day. I can’t say enough. It’s one of my favorite stories to share. I’ve shared it on my LinkedIn, and I’ve shared it in other podcasts, but that’s what we do. That’s what we help with, and it’s very powerful.
Gary Tiratsuyan: They’re spending less time and less money, you know, chasing down payments, and with the savings. Yes, they can bring on a new staff member, and yes, they can invest in care technology. They are, in essence, growing their practice and reaching new heights, and you got them there, and the Practice Management Bridge solution got them there. So, I really appreciate you sharing that story with us.
Alanna Vose: Also, Gary, I think it’s worth mentioning that I work for a company who believes in each and every employee that works for this organization. From the top down, it is so evident that personal and professional growth is extremely important to everyone here. The resources we currently have and continue to get, to better serve the healthcare professionals we work with are only getting stronger and stronger. And I’m so grateful to be part of this innovative journey for Rectangle Health, and I can’t wait to see where we’re going in the near future and be able to share more solutions with our current and future clients.
Gary Tiratsuyan: Truly special to hear and thank you. I echo that sentiment 100 times over and really appreciate you taking the time to join the podcast today, Alanna.
Alanna Vose: Thank you.
Gary Tiratsuyan: Till next time, everybody.
Editor’s note: This interview has been edited for length and clarity.