The Guam Memorial Hospital still has millions of dollars in uncollected receivables, with a significant portion of them overdue by more than a year now.
Yuka Hechanova, the acting CFO of the hospital, informed the GMH board of trustees that the hospital has about $42 million in receivables and over half of that has been overdue for over a year.
According to Hechanova, the biggest part of the hospital’s receivables consists of unresolved Medicare billing.
“The biggest part of the receivable is actually Medicare. There are a lot of unresolved Medicare billings and that’s why we’re working with consultants to help us with those old Medicare billings that have been sitting on the books for a long time,” Hechanova said.
She added that the older the account gets, the less likely it would be to collect.
So far, GMH only has a 45 percent collection rate although it plans to boost that up to 75 percent.
To make matters worse, GMH only has four staffers working on collections.
“And these staffers also entertain the patients that call about their bills, make payment arrangements with the patient, and also, on their downtime, call patients who are in arrears with their payment arrangement. They also monitor some of the accounts that are going to quit and also follow up with calls with those patients as well. But these are mostly with the self-pay because those that are insured, the insurance companies take care of that because of our agreements,” Hechanova said.
GMH board trustee Sarah Nededog said the $42 million in receivables is a significant amount of money and the hospital board must make the collection of these receivables a priority.
“I just feel like, if anything, that’s a clear responsibility of our board. We have to take action. That’s a lot of money left over for the hospital. There’s so much we could do if the hospital gets paid. And I think it’s not an issue that the board can just carry over our minds. It is something, I think, that we really need to be very, very aggressive on,” Nededog said.