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I have COVID. I tested positive yesterday. One of my daughters tried positive today. So I’m in a particularly cranky mood. This will be one of those rant podcasts where I go off on someone. Right now, I’m in a particularly sour mood.


I’ve watched a webinar recently called “Setting Your Practice (or Client’s Practice) Up for Success With Achieving Clean Claims and Reducing Denials in 2022”. Elizabeth Woodcock of Woodcock & Associates put on this webinar.

I should say that while I don’t know Ms. Woodcock personally, she’s exceptionally well-degreed and credentialed (undergraduate degree from Duke, MBA from Wharton, which is one of the top institutions in the world) and has a doctorate, it seems, in Public Health from Johns Hopkins. Again, extraordinary achievements, all of those. She’s a coder and has all kinds of letters after her name for all types of certifications and things like that. She is exceptionally well educated and must be extraordinarily intelligent as well.

Explain things more clearly

I don’t understand what’s going on in this webinar. For somebody who is so respectful of the industry, has so many degrees and certifications, and clearly must be externally intelligent. I don’t understand. We’re learning nothing of any significance whatsoever in this webinar. Yet, it offers CEU credits (continuing education credits). But I don’t know what people are coming away with that is new, actionable, or valuable.

We’ve got a lot of platitudes about things like checking on processes and “you should dig into this and look at this.” But they’re just gross generalizations and not particularly helpful, even at one point diving into concrete suggestions like offering a jeans day for the staff. Let me repeat that, offering a jeans day. That means letting the staff in your office wear jeans if somehow they perform well. That’s retarded, in my opinion.

How to quantify improvements?

I’m not supposed to say “retarded” anymore. Sorry, that’s moronic, in my opinion, because if you can’t even quantify the performance of your staff, if you don’t know the baseline of how your team is performing. You can’t quantify the improvements or even identify where the gains are coming from. There is no point in offering an incentive, whether financial or a jeans day.

I don’t understand not giving data. This webinar has no data that I can find anywhere. 

Now, again, I skimmed through it because it’s an hour, and that’s quite painful to me. While I looked at every single slide, I admit that I didn’t listen to every single second of the presentation. So it’s entirely possible that something was verbalized that was not included in the slides that I missed, so caveat.

A few examples where there was some data isn’t even actual data. It’s not original data. Also, it’s not Woodcock & Associates’ data. For instance, third parties estimate it.

What are the data points?

For example, they quote that 75% of denials can be overturned. That’s not a data point. That’s an estimate from an OIG report. Remember, the OIG is the government. I’m not sure that the government is particularly helpful on this subject because I don’t have the greatest regard for government organizations regarding their efficiency and their data collections (a potential exception being the NSA). They’re not the world’s foremost experts in analytics, certainly not the OIG. They only have data on their subset: Medicare and things like that now. Again, it’s an estimate.

There is fundamental data on this. You can track your denial payment rate. We do that, and our clients do that. That’s not hard to look at. You can see that number. If it’s only at 75%, you’re not performing particularly well because it can be significantly better than that. We have data on that that exists. You can see that about your practice or billing company across your portfolio of practices. You can track that and see if it improves over time.

Show us the data

Where’s the data? Why isn’t there something of actual substance in this webinar other than just, “Oh, you should dive into processes, and you should look at eligibility”? Well, everybody should look at all those things, but you need data.

How come we’re not talking about a process for identifying your top problems? Why is that not including data? That should be the foundation of everything. You should have data on your own business, look at it, and say, “Okay, is it a CO97 or a CO59 or 234 or what?” Whatever it is, what are the top problems you’re experiencing? Are they all eligibility problems? Why are you focusing on them if they’re not even the top five?

We just looked at one today where the number one problem was a timely filing limit. Number one out of all of the denials. Number one. That isn’t good and quickly solved. It should be easily solved. Is that an eligibility problem? Nope, not. But somebody has to have the data. Until anybody looks at the data and sees, “Hey, this is the top problem,” nothing’s going to happen. But then, the problem can be solved.

To conclude

That’s my rant. That’s “me-sick.” I hate webinars that offer nothing of substance and are just thinly-veiled sales pitches. So “Setting Your Practice (or Client’s Practice) Up for Success With Achieving Clean Claims and Reducing Denials in 2022” has no substance. Don’t waste an hour of your life! You can’t get it back.