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Anesthesia Coding Alert

Reader Questions:
Avoid a 'Finders Keepers' Overpayment Mentality

Question: We've discovered that a patient overpaid us on her copay. We collected $50, which was the last copay we had on record. It turns out that the patient's plan changed but is still under the same payer. Her copay is now only $25 for an office visit, however. Can we just credit her account or do we need to issue a refund?Answer: You do need to issue a refund to the patient, but how you do that is up to the patient. As soon as you discover that a patient has overpaid you, your practice should notify the patient.You cannot hold onto the money indefinitely.You can credit the patient's account, but only if the patient agrees to that. If the patient will be returning your office you can suggest that you apply the overpayment as a credit toward the patient's co-payment for the next visit. If the patient doesn't [...]

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