Thank You to Our Platinum and Presidential Sponsors

2005 Issue 2

2005/2006 ISSUE TWO
Chapter Sponsors

Platinum Club
Ernst & Young, LLP
First Credit (FCI) International Corporation
Healthcare Resolution Services, Inc.
Human Arc
Long-O'Shea & Co., LLC
NatCity Investments, Inc.
Revenue Group/HRS

Gold Club
Fenner Consulting
Gustafson + Associates
Senex Services
Squire, Sanders & Dempsey LLP
Wise Management Services, Inc.

Silver Club
JP Recovery Services, Inc.
Masters Associates Receivables Management, Inc.
Mutual Hospital Services
Quadax, Inc.

Bronze Club
Bruner-Cox LLP
Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP
Engelhardt & Emrhein
HMC Group
Howard, Wershbale & Co.
Microsys Computing, Inc.
NCO Financial Systems Inc.
OSI Healthcare Services
Professional Receivables Control, Inc.
UCB - A Receivables Management Co.
Vorys, Sater, Seymour & Pease LLP

HFMA Northeast Ohio
Chapter Officers 2005-2006

Maureen A. Wood

Christopher Milligan

Vice President
Karen J. Joyce

Suzanne M. Tschetter

Brian K. Quinn

Chapter Coordinator
Kathleen A. Much

Board of Directors

Barry L. Franklin
Neil Freer
Brian C. Nestor
James F. O'Donnell
Laurie A. Rauser
Anna Sulewski
Allen R. Tracy

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Visit HFMA Northeast Ohio at:

Click here for Past Newsletters

HFMA Northeast Ohio

Maureen Campbell

Bottom Line Systems, Inc.

Jorie Novacek

Parma Community General Hospital

Jennifer Hahn
Robinson Memorial Hospital

Laurie A. Rauser
The MetroHealth System

Mary Jayne Reedy
Human Arc

Steve Rybka
United Collections Bureau

Anna Sulewski
The MetroHealth System

Steve Thome
Ernst & Young, LLP

Email the Committee

Dave Kilmer

President's Message

Dear Fellow HFMA Members:

Happy New Year! I hope everyone enjoyed the holiday season and was able to spend time with their families and friends. I look forward to working with the NEO Chapter in 2006 as we continue to strive to bring the best programs and services to our members.
As we begin the second half of our program year, I thought this would be a good time to look back on the goals that the board set for our Chapter and provide you with an update on what we have accomplished and what to look forward to in the upcoming months.

Chapter Goals:
  1. Increase number of sponsors and sponsor involvement in the Chapter.
    Chris Milligan and I have been aggressively pursuing new sponsors this year which started with a review of the sponsor benefits being offered. Chris is working directly with each sponsor to ensure they have an opportunity to use their benefits. One new benefit being offered is the opportunity for each sponsor to bring one non-vendor to a meeting.

  2. Develop a formal new member program that promotes Chapter involvement. This initiative is striving to increase the number of active members in our Chapter and will be rolled out in the February. In addition, we will sponsor a Chapter Member-Get-a-Member program that offers awards based on number of new members recruited.
In This Issue?
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  1. Develop a formal program to contact inactive HFMA members to increase Chapter participation.
    This program we be conducted in the spring of 2006 and is aimed at bringing back past active members.

  2. Offer quality educational programs while increasing overall attendance.
    We will continue to offer quality educational programs on topics that are of interest to our members while looking for creative alternatives to the traditional format we have used in the past.

  3. Increased communication to all members
    In addition to the quarterly newsletters that you receive, email blasts are now being sent throughout the year to keep members up-to-date on current events.

  4. Perform Board self assessment in May 2006
    We want to make sure we are meeting the needs of our members and of National HFMA. We will evaluate what worked and what areas we can continue to improve on.

I hope this overview provides our members with a good understanding of where our Chapter is headed and the dedication of the Board and its committees. This is a very aggressive list of goals the Board established for our Chapter this year. The Board and committees are very committed to the success of our Chapter and of its members. I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their efforts and look forward to working on making these goals a reality in 2006. As always, please feel free to contact me directly with questions or concerns you might have. Additionally, volunteers are the core of any successful organization and HFMA is no exception. If you would like to get more involved please give me a call and I will work with you to find the committee that best fits your skills and area of interest. Best wishes for a wonderful year in 2006!


Maureen A. Wood, C.P.A.

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New Members - Welcome to NEOHFMA!

By Maureen Campbell

New members are the lifeblood of our organization. In the spirit of "making it personal", please welcome our newest members to HFMA. Look for them at our next meeting and welcome them to our organization.

Renee Arcuri
Cleveland Clinic Foundation
Lourene Dentkos
Cleveland Clinic Foundation
Grace Jen
CCHS East Region
Chris Maeder
University Hospitals Health System
Sharon Martin
University Hospitals Health System
Darren T. Mauch
Cleveland Clinic Foundation
Kathleen M. Metcalf
Samaritan Regional Health System
Carolyn Mudery
University Hospitals Health Systems
Danielle E. O'Brien
Knox Community Hospital
Scott J. Platz
UHHS Richmond Heights Hospital
Meral Schroeder
Cleveland Clinic Foundation
Tina Sestak
University Hospitals Health System
Hampton W. Shadrach
Cleveland Clinic Foundation

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New Sponsors

By Maureen Campbell

On behalf of NEOHFMA, we would like to welcome our newest Sponsors. Welcome and thank you for your Sponsorship!

Revenue Group/HRS
Platinum Sponsor

Fenner Consulting
Gold Sponsor

Senex Services
Gold Sponsor

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Committee Corner 2005

By Steve Rybka

Patient Financial Services Committee
Please join us February 23'rd at the New Doubletree Hotel on Rockside Road. The annual PFS meeting sponsored by Human Arc is helping us start 2006 with a bang. Come and fully understand the upcoming changes in the Medicaid HMO's.

Topics include:

Medicaid HMO's - How to Navigate the New Processes in 2006
Presentations scheduled to include Charles Cataline, OHA and Jeff Corzine, ODJFS who will begin our discussion by sharing an overview of upcoming changes in the Medicaid HMO program for 2006 and how they impact area health care providers. We will also have several major payors involved in a payor panel to provide an overview of their plan and answer questions. Scheduled payor representatives include Caresource, Qualchoice, Gateway Health Plan, Unison and Buckeye Community Health Plan. If you have a question you would like addressed by the panel, please email it to by February 10.

Health Care Assurance Program - What's new in 2006?
John Smith from Human Arc will share the latest developments in HCAP.

Medical Employers Savings Plans - What should we do?
Mike Williams, partner from Dreyfuss Williams & Associates LPA will share information on how to identify these plans and effectively collect on these balances. Mike's experience focuses on representing providers in obtaining health care reimbursement and representing individuals in ERISA claims.

Every year is something new in PFS. Come hear the latest on 3 hot topics and learn how to effectively navigate change. This program is designed for Patient Financial Services directors and management staff to be ready to face the new challenges of Medicaid HMO's, HCAP and Medical Employers Savings plans. The program will also be of benefit to other finance staff involved in revenue cycle accounting.
MAY 24-25-26 2006.

Those dates sounded so far away just last month. Now it's just around the corner. Mark your calendars now for a GREAT Regional meeting of HFMA at Quail Hollow Resort. Nationally known speakers, luxurious spa, unbelievable dining, golf scramble, prizes, entertainment and much much more. Watch for more details coming your way, but make plans NOW!

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Medical Group Practice Meeting Nov 17

By Steve Rybka

The Medical Group Practice Committee put on another instructive meeting on November 17th with three very informative presentations.

The first was from Katherine B. Hatting VP of Sales for Ovations. Kit gave a great presentation on the Medicare Part D program and at the end, some of us could actually understand the basics of the very confusing program.

The second speaker was Alan Hochheiser from Weltman, Weinberg & Reis Co. of Cleveland. His history lesson and updates of the Bankruptcy Laws made for a very interesting and humorous session.

Marty Frygier was the final speaker and his focus was on the quality of care and economic benefits of Electronic Health Records to hospitals, physician practices and insurance companies.

The meeting concluded with another delicious lunch. Thanks to Jim O'Donnell and Mike Scocos, Co-Chairpersons of the Medical Group Practice Committee and their members Cindy Dormo, Stan Kasmarcak and Brad Smith.

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A "Rockin" Holiday Party

By Steve Rybka

A large number of people that attended the HFMA Holiday Party and Awards Banquet said they had never been to The House of Blues. Well I think it's safe to say they will be back.

What a grand evening presented by the Networking Committee! The Cambridge Room provided a warm setting for the cocktail hour, fabulous dinner buffet and to top off the evening, our Awards ceremony. Congratulations to the award winners (see photo page) from our Chapter. It's through efforts like yours that make this chapter a success.

The generosity of our members was also very evident at this event. Our fund raiser this year was a 50-50 raffle to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Northern Ohio. We had 2 winners to our raffle, Rose Golembiewski won the dollar prize and Jack Bailey won Indians Club seats provided by UCB. Thanks to our generous members for giving close to $500 to the L&L Society.

Also many thanks go to Ellen Zizis and Joyce Gusman, Co-Chairpersons of the Network Committee for the huge amount of time and effort putting together another successful Holiday event. Members of the Network Committee are: Betsy Boatman, Bill Bogdan, Bill Emrhein, Betti Harper, Maria Jayoussi, Karen Joyce, Art Juarez, Mary Jane Reedy, Steve Rybka, Kelly Sheehan, Suzanne Tschetter, Nadia Vincenti, Tammy, Zografos.

By the way, with the 119 registered guests, this was the largest Holiday/Awards Banquet in quite a few years. Wait till you here where next year is planned!!

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Kudos to You!

By Laurie Rauser

The Northeast Ohio Chapter of HFMA would like to express "kudos" to the following Chapter members.

Congratulations to Anne and Chuck Armao. They had a baby girl, Maria Nicole, on August 11th. She weighed 8lbs. 14 oz. and was 22 ? in. long.

Sue Densmore - Sue has moved from controllership of East Liverpool city Hospital to Assistant Regional Controller of Humility of Mary Health Partners.

Thomas Halbert - After five years as Manager of Accounting at UHHS, Heather Hill Hospital, is resigning to operate his own accounting and tax practice. His new office is located at 33579 Euclid Ave in Willoughby. He can be reached at 440-585-5557 or emailed at

Kent Holdcroft - AIM Healthcare Services is happy to announce the promotion of Mr. Kent Holdcroft from Regional Director-Ohio to National Director-Northeast Division. Kent is looking forward to his continued involvement with HFMA within a new chapter once he relocates to the New England states.

Dave Lennox - Dave was promoted from Senior Consultant to Principal Consultant with Siemens Medical Solutions.

Dorothy Long - Dorothy was promoted from Supervisor to Manager of Billing at UHHS.

Jeff Myers - Jeff recently joined Marymount Health Care Systems as Chief Operating Officer.

Congratulations to Laurie and Richard Rauser. They had a baby girl, Ruby Anna, on October 21st. She weighed 6 lbs. 2oz. and was 18 ? in long.

Donald Sinko, CPA - Previously Director of Internal audit for CCHS, was named Chief Integrity Officer of the Cleveland Clinic Health System. He will be responsible for the Offices of Internal Audit and Corporate Compliance.

Michael Szubski - The Chief Financial Officer of University Hospitals of Cleveland, has been promoted to the position of University Hospitals Health System CFO - Hospital Division. Mike will assume additional responsibilities as the CFO for all UHHS wholly owned hospitals and the executive leadership of the Revenue Cycle and Managed Care Contracting departments. Mike will retain his title and responsibilities as CFO of University Hospitals of Cleveland, in addition to his new title and responsibilities.

Claudio Zanin - Claudio left Parma Hospital in mid November to join UHHS/CSAHS - Cuyahoga, Inc., St. John West Shore, and St. Vincent Charity Hospitals, as Manager of Reimbursement/Revenue Support.

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Upcoming Events

Listed below are the remaining events planned for the 2005/2006 program year. Details and dates are announced as soon as they are available.

February 23, 2006Patient Financial ServicesDouble Tree South
March 16, 2006Sarbanes-Oxley ImplementationDouble Tree South
April 27, 2006Post Acute CareDouble Tree South
May 24-26, 2006Gerry Haggerty Annual Leadership InstituteQuail Hollow
June, 2006Managed CareTo be Announced
July 28, 2006To Be Announced To be Announced

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A Sneak Peak at This Year's GHALI Plans

Mark your calendar for the upcoming 2006 Regional HFMA Gerry Haggerty Annual Leadership Institute (GHALI). The GHALI, co-sponsored by the Northeast Ohio and Central Ohio HFMA chapters, will be held May 24 - 26, at the Renaissance Quail Hollow Resort in Painesville, Ohio (east of Cleveland). Highlights of the conference will include:
  • Up to 20 hours CPE featuring nationally-recognized speakers on a variety of pertinent topics
  • Pre-conference workshop: Fundamentals of Healthcare Finance
  • Welcome reception at the Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum
  • Networking activities include golf at Quail Hollow Country Club's Delvin-Von Hagge championship golf course, spa, wine tour and tasting at Debonne vineyards, shopping excursion to Legacy Village, and "Casino Night"
  • Executive Roundtable breakout session
  • Payer / Provider panel debate
  • Vendor fair
Registration information and further details to follow . . .

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HFMA National's On-line Membership Directory

Have you visited HFMA National's On-line Membership Directory lately? Here's the link: When you select "HFMA Directory", not only can you search for members of our chapter, you can also search for all of your HFMA colleagues by name, company, and location - regardless of chapter! Using an on-line directory instead of a printed directory ensures that you always have the most up-to-date contact information.

While accessing HFMA National's On-line Membership Directory, you may view your current contact information and make edits to your profile. You can also view any products you have ordered, events you have registered for, your CPE credits, your Founders points, and more! It is vital that HFMA has your correct information, so please take a moment to review your record now. By doing so, you will ensure that HFMA continues to provide you with valuable information and insights that further your success.

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By Jo Ann Ude
Vision Financial Corp.

In today's economic environment of regulatory compliance, implementing an effective revenue cycle management program is critical to the success of health care institutions and the level of patient care. Before you can effectively define and achieve strategic revenue cycle improvements, it is imperative that you answer some critical questions and consider all available resources to assist you in maximizing revenue and meeting your specific objectives.

One of the most critical areas to look at when putting together a revenue cycle management program is outstanding receivables. Whether you collect internally on your delinquent accounts or outsource to an agency, the following questions need to be answered to determine whether or not you are getting value from your investment.
  1. What are your goals for bad debt percentages, and are they realistic? Set attainable improvement goals for your facility based on previous history and strategic enhancements.

  2. What recovery percentage on your receivables are you currently achieving? Net of fee recovery is revenue to your bottom line. If you are unhappy or unsure of the current recovery percentage, then it's time to restructure your efforts.

  3. If using an agency, are they licensed in ALL states where licensing is required by law? Very few agencies today are licensed in all 50 states. If your patients cross state borders, be sure to ask the question when considering a new agency.

  4. Is all correspondence sent out with mandated state-specific language? This is a requirement that must be complied with to protect you from potential legal issues.

  5. Does your agency have the technology to run the statistical reports you need to determine the effectiveness of your collections program and do you completely understand them? With today's cutting-edge technology, you should easily be able to receive reports in YOUR preferred format. If not, look for an agency that can provide exactly what you need.

  6. At what point do you cease your internal collection effort or when does your agency stop pursuing your outstanding receivables? Remember, these are your receivables and your bottom line can be greatly affected by the results. If your patient accounts are not being aggressively pursued, then it's time to make a change.

  7. When your agency ceases collection activity, are you advised of the alternate means that may be pursued? There are more options available today than ever for maximizing your recovery; make sure your agency is communicating these to you.

  8. When outsourcing your receivables, how often does your agency communicate with you, and is it enough? As a client, you have the right to request feedback and, if available, have online access to view activity on your accounts.

  9. Does your agency provide you with advice that is truly beneficial for you, or is it only advantageous to them? Select a partner with the highest of standards, professionalism, and financial experience. Successful business relationships are built on a thorough understanding of your specific business needs, and your partner should continually communicate with you to meet those needs.

  10. Are you 100% satisfied with both your internal efforts and/or your outside agency's performance? It's harder to gain a new patient than retain one. Effective collections and courtesy go hand-in-hand. Collection representatives are a reflection of YOU. Make sure that your staff and/or agency are trained to understand the account and treat each patient with respect and common sense.
After reviewing and asking yourself these questions, you are well on your way to defining an effective revenue cycle management program. Every effective collection strategy consists of a few key ingredients; a high level of integrity and professionalism, superior service levels for both patient and client, and progressive technology. If you have ever questioned whether you are achieving the highest possible results in your revenue cycle, the answer is likely no. With some careful research and an objective view, you will certainly improve your process. The result will be a worthwhile investment in time and a beneficial improvement to your current revenue cycle management program.

Jo Ann Ude is a member of HFMA and Regional Sales Director with Vision Financial Corp., 11470 Euclid Avenue PMB 502, Cleveland, OH 44106-3926, (888) 826-3853.

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Financial Performance of Medical Groups Declined in 2004

By Lance S. Loria, CPA, FACHE, FAAMA

The Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) recently released the 2005 Cost Survey which is based on 2004 data. This year's survey marks the beginning of a split into two detailed reports for multi-specialty practices and single-specialty practices. The MGMA continued the practice of separately identifying hospital-owned and physician-owned practices separately.

Following years of declining revenues coupled with increasing costs the result is declining margins for primary care medical group practices. Internal Medicine single specialty groups experienced a decline in margin of 5.5 percent to less than $202,000 and Primary Care multi-specialty groups not owned by hospitals saw a decrease in margin of 3.9 percent to just over $217,000. The trend in declining margins existed among all specialties, although there were variations in the amounts.

Performance differed by ownership for multi-specialty practices. Cost controls seemed to be more effective for hospital-owned multi-specialty practices whereas revenue growth was better for physician-owned multi-specialty practices. Single-specialty practices continued to experience professional liability cost increases in 2004 (with the exception of anesthesiology) which put pressure on margins.

For hospitals and health systems that either own medical practices or have plans to acquire them, the message is clear. Efficient practice management coupled with a focused revenue growth strategy is required. Implementing productivity metrics for physician performance evaluation can have a favorable result on margin. Managing the number and type of physicians recruited to markets can also impact performance.

The weakening operating performance trends should not be overlooked when buying or selling practices. The documented unfavorable trend on physician practice margins may be used in negotiations as an adjustment to reduce purchase price. On the other hand, when selling a practice, cost controls and revenue growth should be emphasized.

Whenever possible differentiate the practice being sold from the MGMA "averages" by gaining an understanding of the MGMA cost survey data. Since survey participation is voluntary, the results may not be representative of the industry. The 2005 Cost Survey can be purchased from the MGMA by calling 877-275-6542, ext. 888 or going on-line at

Lance S. Loria, CPA, FACHE, FAAMA, is President of LORIA ASSOCIATES, LLC, in Houston. He has 33 years of health care industry experience. Lance is an advanced member of HFMA and recipient of the Founders Medal of Honor Award for outstanding career service. He is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives; and Fellow of the American Academy of Medical Administrators. He is a frequent author and speaker on health care industry topics. Lance can be contacted for questions regarding this article at

Reprinted from the December 2005/January 2006 issue of gulf coast lines, with permission from the Texas Gulf Coast Chapter of HFMA.

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By Jennifer Hahn

Jen, Paula and Sarah had spent the week decorating an elderly neighbor's house, for which they earned $500 between them. When it came to dividing up the money, Paula claimed she had worked three times harder than Jen, and Sarah had worked twice as hard as Paula. If the money was divided fairly, how much money did they each receive?

E-mail your answer to Jennifer Hahn at All correct entries will be included in a drawing and one lucky entrant will receive a $25 gift certificate to Target.

Previous puzzle: Bag of Beads
Answer: 10 red beads, 5 green beads and 9 blue beads
Winner: Ken Lakota of University Hospitals Health System won a $25 gift certificate to Starbucks.

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