ACI recommends that claims be handled proactively. Gathering and reviewing evidence on an ongoing basis will provide comprehensive representation, improve results as well as client satisfaction and ultimately increase the percentage of clients referring family and friends to the firm. To increase the quality, efficiency and effectiveness as the claim progresses:
- Immediately obtain evidence upon signing up a new client.
- Send the letter to the attending physician(s) provided by ACI.
- Regularly update medical evidence by encouraging clients to obtain the office records each time they visit their medical providers.
- Communicate with clients about current medical and work status.
- When a client appears to need a consultation with a specialist in another medical area, advise them to have their current physician recommend it.
- Inquire as to changes in their condition, including medical, financial and emotional.
To expedite the gathering of evidence, give your clients 10 self-addressed stamped envelopes. Ask them to obtain copies of doctor’s records, which are usually available to patients without charge, each time they have an appointment. The lack of follow up while a case is pending can be a glaring weakness in case management. If a client notifies you that they are no longer seeing a physician, request their records immediately. Those records will not change and are easiest to obtain as soon as treatment has been terminated. Case managers must create a tickle list for records requested and monitor it at least weekly.
Form letters and forms are to be processed consistently throughout the office. The failure to process claims according to a firm procedure will diminish the quality and professionalism of the representation provided. Additional letters must often be created and used on an ongoing basis to manage cases consistently and effectively. ACI helps with the creation of appropriate forms and letters.
By taking the time and making the effort to teach case managers methods to responsibly manage their claims, attorneys will be able to engage in more comprehensive representation. ACI helps set up a program to effectively teach support staff what is necessary to manage cases.