Healthcare systems in the U.S. are continually challenged to maintain strong revenue cycles amid fluctuating industry dynamics.

Many healthcare organizations are seeing decreased revenues as patients become increasingly responsible for their own health-related costs. To address these financial challenges, organizations are looking for ways to decrease costs without impacting the quality of service and care they provide. 

Next-generation artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) solutions like Robotic Process Automation can help healthcare organizations more efficiently and cost-effectively manage day-to-day activities.

What is RPA?

Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is a type of software solution that makes it easy for users to automate digital tasks, regardless of their ability to code.

RPA lets users generate software robots (i.e., bots) with the ability to learn, imitate, and perform various rules-based functions and tasks. Users build custom bots by observing the digital actions of human workers and showing the bots what to do — the software then executes the business processes from there.

Such RPA bots can interact with any application, system or database in the same way a typical worker does. The only difference is RPA bots can function 24/7 with more speed, precision and reliability.

Automation in healthcare

The opportunities to leverage RPA in healthcare, an industry habitually overrun by non-scalable manual workflows and a myriad of disparate databases, are immense. That's even more the case today as health systems everywhere have been forced to accelerate the embrace of digital transformation thanks to the ongoing pandemic.

WWT partners with Automation Anywhere to help our customers discover automation opportunities in this growing and complex space. Automation Anywhere's offerings have been shown to drastically impact healthcare scenarios across claims processing, operational analytics, patient preauthorization, and medical and record data management.

Another area RPA solutions can be of use is revenue cycle management, the process healthcare organizations use to collect medical bill payments to generate revenue.

Healthcare use case: Revenue cycle management pilot

A U.S.-based cancer research center approached WWT for help with ways to streamline its revenue cycle management processes through automation.

After holding multiple C-level meetings with the customer's revenue cycle management leadership, including weekly briefings with their Center of Excellence, WWT's healthcare and automation experts recommended a cloud-based RPA software solution from Automation Anywhere.

To demonstrate the cost saving value this RPA solution could have on the customer's revenue cycle management system, particularly around optimizing claim denials, WWT worked with Automation Anywhere to perform a proof of concept (POC) in the cancer research center's IT operating environment. This type of POC exercise is how many RPA projects begin.

The POC featured the Automation Anywhere Robotic Interface (AARI), a digital interface designed to improve employee productivity through a cloud-delivered digital assistant. This assistant lets users without programming skills unlock the full benefits of automation. For example, a call center agent can use the AARI interface to alert patients when an agent is available rather than having them wait on hold.

The POC also included correspondence document extraction and routing into the customer's specific financial billing system.

WWT and Automation Anywhere showcased our POC findings to cancer research center leadership, to great reception. The customer subsequently acquired a small round of bots from Automation Anywhere to begin Phase 1 of backend processing optimization work.

We look forward to working with the cancer research center on their plans to expand their automation capabilities to solve revenue cycle management and other industry challenges in the coming months and years.

Learn about additional value chain solutions from WWT Healthcare.