How to Develop Billing Software for a Medical Laboratory

Your average medical laboratory has a lot of work to do. The number of tests it should perform daily is enough to keep dozens of specialists round-a-clock busy while managing the teams and complex paperwork-heavy procedures is a challenge in and of itself. After the work has been done, money should be sent, employees should be paid, taxes should be done. The laboratory billing process is also a complicated, bureaucratic task that throws quite a lot of additional work onto an already huge heap of responsibilities. It’s quite easy to make a slip in this complex environment and cause yourself and the lab a lot of trouble. Fortunately, the software is here to minimize the possibility of slips and maximize the efficiency of the lab as a whole. A billing system in particular can make the billing process a relative breeze that is pleasant rather than frustrating.  

From this article, you will learn about the lab billing systems and their functionality, the nuances of building lab billing software, and the surest way of determining the price of such a complex endeavor. 

Content: 

1. Lab Billing Software and its Functionality 

2. Options of Laboratory Billing Process 

3. How Much Does it Cost to Build Lab Billing Software? 

4. Conclusion 

Lab Billing Software and Its Functionality

Diagnostic lab billing software is a digital solution that automates and optimizes the billing with its related processes and manages data. Depending on the specifics and requirements of a lab, the functionality of the billing software may differ. However, the primary mission of any billing system is to boost the productivity and financial standing of the lab by eliminating the necessity to manually perform mind-numbing tasks.  

If you want to make billing software for medical laboratory, keep in mind that a well-rounded lab billing software usually has the following features: 

Scheduling 

With the help of the billing software, the employees can schedule tests (or meetings with patients to take samples). Ideally, the scheduling includes a notification system.

Eligibility check and claims processing

If the insurance is required to perform certain tests, the billing software should automatically check the eligibility of patients. In addition, the software should help monitor, manage, reject, and edit patients' claims in real-time. 

Reporting

There’s not a well-rounded billing software without a convenient and advanced reporting system. The billing software should automate monthly, weekly, and annual report creation and processing, provide significant customization capabilities, provide statistics with KPIs, accounting, and sales data. The more — the better as reporting can be a source of valuable strategic insights.  

Data Management 

All relevant laboratory information should be conveniently stored in one place and managed using the system. Also, if the billing system is a part of a larger ERP solution, it should have access to relevant data that is stored there as well. 

Options of Laboratory Billing Process

When the deal gets to handling billing stuff, you have 4 primary options. The first one is to deal with the task in an old-school manual way using whichever tools you have available to make the process easier and quicker. No need to tell, why this approach is less than efficient and more than simply time-consuming. 

The second option is to outsource billing to third-party providers who will handle everything. It can be quick and efficient, but expensive solution. Besides, if you rely on third-party providers, you are sacrificing a bit of your independence and flexibility and add to the ambiguity because you can’t control their pricing policy or be well-aware of their future decisions. 

The third option is to buy the out-of-the-box billing solution. It’s a quick and effective way of level upping your billing game. Nonetheless, it’s also not as flexible as it could be considering that out-of-the-box solutions are made for a mass market and as a result may lack some features that your lab may need the most. Also, often, you’ll have to pay for the out-of-the-box solutions for as long as you use them. Being dependent on a third-party isn’t the most comfortable option. 

The fourth option is to develop medical lab billing software tailored specifically to the needs and specifics of your lab. In the short-term, it’s an expensive decision, which requires a significant starting investment and some time to develop and implement. However, in the long-term, the custom billing solution will pay off twofold. First of all, it grants unprecedented flexibility as it’s tailored specifically to the needs of a given lab. Also, it provides independence as you don’t have to pay for it in the future and rely on third-party providers. Besides, custom software is easy to expand with new functionality and integrate into a bigger system. 

How Much Does It Cost to Build Clinical Lab Billing Software 

Without beating around the bush, the cost of developing clinical lab billing software depends on the prices of the chosen software development provider, complexity of the system, chosen platforms (Windows, Android, iOS, Mac, or all of them), chosen model of cooperation. Therefore, the best way of determining the price is to conduct price estimation, during which experienced developers will analyze the problem, its solution, needed functionality, approaches, and relevant tech stack to determine how much time it will take to develop the software. 

Such an approach is good when you already have some initial drafts, descriptions of the future system. 

However, if what you have is only a rough idea of what you want, we propose a Discovery Phase, which will provide you not only with the accurate cost estimates but also with 

- product concept from Product Manager

- prototypes from Business Analyst

- a visual concept from UI/UX Designer

- architecture concept from System Architect

As a result, you will have a solid foundation for further development or investment rounds. 

Conclusion

Whether it’s a dental lab billing software, pathology lab billing software, or a billing solution integrated into a larger ERP of the hospital, we can help you develop one. With the expertise that covers software development and business analysis, we are well-equipped to deliver regulation-heavy software. Besides, we have plenty of experience creating software solutions for the HealthCare industry and will be more than happy to make this experience your asset. Also, we provide a variety of flexible business models: fixed price, time and materials, dedicated team. Therefore, depending on your needs and budget, you can choose what suits you the most. 

Contact us, if you want to create medical laboratory billing software. We can help.