Get To Know Amber Kirkpatrick – Revenue Cycle Management Leader
CaptureNet is a proud sponsor of the Healthcare Financial Management Association’s (HFMA) HERe initiative. The HERe initiative aims to inspire not only women but men invested in the professional development of women leaders in the health care field with the tools and resources they need to succeed.
In honor of our support for this program, we are dedicating this month’s blog to introducing CaptureNet’s Vice President of Client Operations, Amber Kirkpatrick and the contributions she has made (and continues to make) within the health care field.
Question (Q): Amber, thank you for agreeing to participate in this feature column in honor of the Arizona HERe Women’s Leadership Conference. This year’s conference theme is “Rising Strong” inspired by Dr. Brene’ Brown, author of three #1 New York Times bestsellers – The Gifts of Imperfection, Daring Greatly, and Rising Strong. Overcoming vulnerability is one of Brown’s key messages. You play an important role at CaptureNet, and we know you prefer to be behind the scenes rather than in the spotlight. We appreciate that you are allowing us this opportunity highlight you and your leadership today.
To begin, why don’t you tell our readers about yourself and the role you fill here at Capturenet.
Amber Kirkpatrick (AK): I am just like many other women attending this year’s HERe event. I have worked hard, I’ve challenged myself, I have made mistakes, I’ve blown opportunities, I’ve embarrassed myself both personally and professionally, I have experienced shame and, frankly, suck at vulnerability. Responding to this prompt might be the most vulnerable move I have made all year and the one thing I am sure of is that I likely won’t be satisfied with my responses when all is said and done.
For the last 17 years, it has been my pleasure to serve many types of customers in revenue cycle management. For me this has been an opportunity to participate in something I believe in where I can see the impact of my effort while working alongside people I continue to learn from day in and day out.
I entered this industry through member benefits and customer service roles. I grew through claims management, zero balance review and denials management positions and I came to love patient billing after joining the CaptureNet team in 2013 where I currently serve as VP of Client Operations.
While working towards my degree I gained experience in revenue cycle. During these years, I developed a passion for client management and team member development as I worked alongside some of the most talented professionals in the industry. Today I am operationally responsible for ensuring positive results while maintain a collaborative relationship with our client base.
Q: You were CaptureNet’s very first employee? Was it difficult joining a new organization, especially one in such a competitive industry? How has CaptureNet grown since you joined the team?
AK: CaptureNet has undergone considerable growth since I joined the team in 2013 and I feel privileged to have participated such a successful effort. In 2013, it took some courage to leave the organization I had grown with over the past 10 years, but once I made the decision to join the CaptureNet team as Employee Number One, I realized my courage paid off. I quickly realized I gained as much, if not more, than what I had just given up. I found myself amongst professionals that challenged me, helping me to grow by allowing me to fail as we collectively worked to grow the organization. Today we stand at just under 60 team members, serving more than 200 hospitals in 26 states. There have been times over the past four years that I have felt vulnerable, but always followed by some sort of confirmation that I am exactly where I supposed to be.
Q: That sounds like a story that would be featured in Rising Strong: ”We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can’t have both. Not at the same time.” You say you feel like you are exactly where you are supposed to be. Explain that. Where do you find fulfillment in your career?
I find fulfillment in results. It’s a great feeling knowing our team can help a patient find an amicable solution to a stressful situation. Medical bills are often unexpected and when our customer care team can help a patient with a payment plan, financial assistance or bill insurance to satisfy an outstanding balance, all parties benefit. The effort put into finding an equitable resolution for patient’s healthcare financial responsibility goes beyond the tangible results we help our clients achieve, but extends deep into the heart of the communities we ultimately serve.
Q: Clearly the impact of your clients’ work extends beyond payment collections. How does improving the self-pay collection process improve communities?
AK: Improving self-pay collections through CaptureNet’s process benefits the communities we serve because of the investments we make back into those communities while simultaneously improving the patient experience. Rather than taking jobs out of the community, it is our goal to invest back into it. We hire our customer care team from within the communities we serve. In addition, the patient experience improves with a consistent workflow application made possible through leading edge analytics and knowledgeable customer care representatives who truly care about their neighbors.
Connie, one of our Customer Care Representatives who has been with CaptureNet for just over a year, recently shared with me an encounter she had with a guarantor in her community. The client was so confused and frustrated by the multiple statements she had received from a single occurrence for her child. She had received bills from the emergency room doctor, the anesthesiologist, and the ambulance company. She did not understand why and how she owed so much to so many different entities. The situation was unexpected, and she did not have the savings set aside for such an event. Frankly, the guarantor was stressed by the entire set of events. She only had a few minutes remaining of her lunch break because she had spent so much time with the other billing groups but was desperate for information. Connie offered to send the patient a detailed statement that should be compared to her EOB’s so she could review the information at her convenience. Connie told the guarantor that she would call her back in seven days. The patient was thrilled to hear back from Connie seven days later as promised. She spent the necessary time to review each physician’s invoice and facility bill ultimately confirming the patient responsibility for the guarantor. Connie patiently took the time and effort to ensure that the amount due was accurate which allowed the patient to plan for payment and finally find peace with the situation.
As an Arizona HFMA HERe Women’s Leadership Conference Sponsor, CaptureNet is proud to equip women leaders in the health care field with the tools and resources they need to succeed. Learn more about how our innovative solution improves self-pay revenue collection and the patient experience by visiting our website at www.capturenet.com.