Revenue Retriever – How We Make The Difference


Understanding how we make a difference

Revenue Retriever (RR) is an intelligent proactive application which boosts revenue and profit. It does this by eradicating missed charges and ensuring that practice standards are adhered to – and properly charged for.

It achieves this by using four processes:-

  1. An audit of the revenue lost due to missed charges.

Such losses arise because of non-adherence to practice protocols or rules. Idexx Smartflow has estimated missed charges as costing 10-20% of revenue.

EXAMPLE: A four site practice with a T/O over a 6 month period of 1.6 million pounds, was audited by Revenue Retriever as having incurred £43,000 of lost revenue due to non-compliance with practice protocols. Since the majority of the practice overhead was already recovered most of this £43,000 would flow to the bottom line, adding around 25% to the practices EBITDA.

The audit performed is rapid and extensive – at a 24 hour interval or more if required.

  • An audit of the compliance with practice protocols or rules.

EXAMPLE: the practice’s protocol is that a consultation fee should usually (but not always) be included with a number of clinical products’ are dispensed. The rule lists all the occasions on which this charge has not been made. This can then be considered by the clinical director or practice manager. The report specifies date, time, and practitioner name.

  • A live automatic prompt to remind the clinician in real time of likely better practice compliance and billing.

EXAMPLE: the protocol is that an eye drops should be administered before an eye examination takes place. Sometimes the clinician forgets to make the charge for the drops. RR reminds the clinician to add that charge. If for whatever reason drops were not used the vet does not add the charge but if they were, the vet will have been reminded to do so. The audit trail reports the apparent non-conformance which can be subsequently followed up to ensure best practice takes place.

  • An auto-correction of missed billable charges.

Unless action is taken to override the invoice will be adjusted in real time before payment is required.

EXAMPLE 1: when an Xray is taken it is a requirement that an Xray interpretation fee is charged. If this is not added by the clinician, RR automatically intervenes and adds the charge before the client is presented with the bill.

EXAMPLE 2: Another rule can stipulate that professional time must be charged when a number of injectable medications are given, additional to the cost of the medications. In one recent application the corrected charges added amounted to £18,000 over six months; revenue which would otherwise have been lost by the breach of this one rule alone without the application of RR.

IMPORTANT: It should be emphasised that auto-correction can be overridden if the vet is sure that it would be correct to do so, but this decision will be captured by the audit for subsequent clinical evaluation.

The RR reports are flexible – they can provide overall and exception information for each rule or protocol by practice, by date and by vet – regardless of whether the item is just being audited, is being prompted or being corrected.

EXAMPLE: For one group of practices on which RR has been operating there are just 7 rules in operation. The total value of occasions on which rules were not complied with came to £102,000.

It is noteworthy that the two main rules which were broken related to standing protocols which required that an injection of an antibiotic or painkiller is given in the surgery before a course of tablets is proscribed for home administration. The charge cannot be autocorrected, as the injection is not given on each and every occasion, but the vets appear to have fallen into the habit of hardly ever observing what is a standing protocol  and losing £80,000 of revenue – prompting clinical review and management intervention and retraining.

Benchmarking can deliver comparative audit information which can help practice managers and business owners focus their improvement activities on current problems in a timely fashion.

EXAMPLE: In the above example there were five practices and for the rules where autocorrect was not applied, the level of compliance is given for each practice. This indicated that for one rule, the compliance rates varied from good (100%) for three practices but down to 30% and 60% respectively in the other two practices. Clearly management effort can be best directed to the two non-complying practices to help the vets (who are identified) understand why the charge should be made. If these vets are educated to increase the frequency of rule compliance substantial extra income will be added.