Atrium Health adopts digital payments from Epic

Charlotte, N.C.-based Atrium Health built a digital payment platform with Epic that is moving the health system away from paper billing.

Atrium Health, which is part of Advocate Health, launched the program for patients with smaller self-pay balances in mid-2022 before expanding it to all self-pay patients later that year, according to a June 10 Epic article. These patients are notified via text, email or MyChart when they have a balance, which they can pay online.

"Consumers want the payment method that is the least intrusive and the easiest path for them to follow," said Chris Johnson, vice president of patient account services and vendor management at Atrium Health, in the article. "We need to meet patients where, when, and how they prefer to interact with us."

Atrium switched all patients with MyChart accounts to paperless statements in November and plans to do the same in August for patients with an email address or cellphone number on file, per Epic. Also in August, one Atrium clinic plans to pilot a program where patients can store credit cards on their accounts to automatically pay balances up to a certain amount.

Atrium patients made more than $19 million in digital payments between June 2022 and July 2023, while the health system avoided sending more than 200,000 paper statements from April 2023 to March 2024, for a savings of $182,000, according to the article. Leaders from Atrium's billing, marketing, MyChart patient communications, and regulatory compliance teams collaborated to design and customize the Epic program.

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