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Celent: Doctors Need Walletoscopy Tools

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The shift to high-deductible health care will create opportunities for companies that help doctors collect payments from patients.

Red Gillen , a banking analyst at Celent L.L.C., Boston, gives that assessment in a review of the patient collections technology market.

Patients are likely to be responsible for 30% of health care expenditures in 2012, up from 12% in 2007, Gillen writes.

The current patient self-pay bad debt level is about 40% to 50%, and that means providers could be responsible for collecting $317,000 from patients per location, Gillen writes.

The providers may face about $158,500 in bad debt per location, with a national total of about $170 billion in self-pay bad debt, Gillen predicts.

Many locations will buy systems that will help them adjudicate claims and collect payments up front, Gillen writes.