Vermillion's newest employer, Alleviant, LLC, is getting its furnishings and office equipment settled into its new home at 907 N. Norbeck Street.
(Photo by David Lias)
No firm date has yet been set for the company's first day of business in the community. That day is approaching, soon, however, and it brings with it the prospect of employing up to 60 people by the end of the year, and double that number by the end of 2013.
Alleviant is a subsidiary of Navigant Consulting, Inc., of Chicago, and likely will open the doors of its Vermillion facility sometime in the third quarter of 2012, according to John Boland, managing director with Navigant Healthcare and head of Alleviant.
"July, August, September – it will be within that timeframe," he said.
Vermillion residents took advantage of an opportunity to meet Wednesday evening with Boland and other members of the Alleviant staff that currently are on board during an open house held at its local office building.
Navigant works in a number of industries – including healthcare, energy, and financial services, and its Alleviant office in Vermillion will be part of its national medical billing and coding offerings. It currently operates similar offices in Mitchell and Plankinton.
"We do all of the back office administration that physician organizations need to be able to bill and collect the money that is due to them for the services that they provide," Boland said. "Really, why people want to do business with us is that we can help in a manner where we have a controlled cost scenario for a physician.
"We can take over all of the business administration to help them get paid for their services so that they can focus in on the care of the patients in the communities that they serve," he said.
Employees of Vermillion's Alleviant office will have a variety of duties, including claim coding, sending claims to insurance payers, and posting payments that come back from insurance payers.
"They'll also be working with payers on claims that are denied, and providing the insurance payers the right information to get those claims paid," Boland said. "They'll be educating patients on their billing statements and who owes what from where, and they'll be providing back statistics to the physicians so that the physicians can see how their businesses are running."
The services that will be provided by Alleviant's Vermillion staff will be a "win-win" for both physicians and their patients.
"Our services enable the back office to run efficiently, and that lowers the overall cost of delivery of health care from the administrative side," Boland said. "The nice thing is that it enables the physician to focus in on the actual clinical care needs of the community, which is a win-win again, too, because you've got physicians who are focused in on their clinical crafts, and you've got patients who are getting the best possible care that they can get in any community where they may live."
Alleviant's Mitchell office currently employs approximately 100 people; 42 people staff its Plankinton site.
"The Alleviant offices right now are solely in South Dakota," he said. "We've had great success in finding and employing folks here in South Dakota that have the skills that make them very necessary and very integral to the success of the physicians' offices.
"It's been a very loyal and stable workforce," Boland said. "It's enabled us to build a business that's very predictable and delivers a lot of value to the physicians that we serve. We find all of that combination to be very, very compelling, and a reason why we want to continue to grow here in South Dakota."
Alleviant serves physicians throughout the United States, from coast to coast.
"We're not limited to just one area; we serve physicians in California and we have physicians on the East coast, from New York to Georgia, and we've got them in-between," Boland said.
Alleviant's U.S.-based processing centers in South Dakota also offer reliability and cost advantage over most alternatives, providing physician organizations a lower-cost alternative to manage the profitability and growth of their organization over time.
Alleviant is backed by a deep bench of industry thought leaders and consultants within Navigant Healthcare who assist health systems, physician organizations and payers in designing, developing and implementing integrated solutions that create high-performing healthcare organizations.
Alleviant's business model will remain steady, whatever the U.S. Supreme Court may decide concerning the constitutionality of Obamacare. The High Court is expected to announce its ruling today (Thursday).
"No matter where you stand on the political issues, everybody is trying to figure out a way to increase the quality of the care that's being delivered, and decrease the cost of that care that's being delivered," he said. "Regardless of the Supreme Court decision, Alleviant and Navigant, as a company, are positioned well to try to help folks deliver their services at a lower cost, and to be able to overall control the costs of health care and to help drive up that care factor.
"We're less concerned about the politics of it," Boland said, "and are more concerned about helping the whole industry segment become more efficient."