When you need to post payments you received later, use the Personal Payments program (
pam) in your Practice Management window. The
pam program makes it fast and easy to post a stack of checks, a credit write-off, or a single copay.
Payments typically posted through
pam include personal checks, money orders, credit card payments, and cash. Payments from insurance companies are posted using the Post Insurance Payments (
Not Just For Payments: While
pam‘s primary purpose is to post payments, it can also post account adjustments. Any adjustment that behaves like a payment and would result in a decreasing balance should be posted in
pam. Adjustments that behave like refunds (or procedures) and increase an account’s balance (or remove a credit) should be posted in the
Post a Personal Payment
Read the steps below for a complete introduction to
pam. Follow the steps to post a personal check and apply it to several old balances. Then read the sections below to learn more about the tools and features of
You can access
pam from the “Daily Operations” window of your Partner windows. You can also type
pam at a command prompt.
Find an Account
Enter the account’s name into the find screen:
To learn more about finding patients and accounts, read Finding Patients and Accounts.
Enter Basic Payment Information
Enter the date of the payment, the payment type, the amount, the check number (if applicable) and optionally a provider. Press the Tab or Enter keys to move forward one field, press the Backspace or left arrow keys to move back one field.
Automatic Date: Today’s date is entered for you automatically. If you wish to record a previous date of payment, simply press Backspace and change the date. The date can be written without slashes, i.e. “092205” for September 9th, 2005, and you can use the abbreviations of “y” for yesterday and “t” for today.
F4 – Link Payments
After you enter basic payment information, press F4 to see a list of outstanding charges and link the payment to a charge.
Select Charges to Apply the Payment Against
Enter the number, or range of numbers, of the charges towards which you wish to apply your new payment. To help you make your selection, the screen displays the amount of each charge that is currently pending insurance and the amount due personal. In most cases, you will apply the full amount of a personal payment to the oldest charges first.
You can use a range of numbers or commas to select specific charges. Press Enter to continue.
Where is the Charge I Need?: The screen will only show unpaid charges that are at least partly personal. Paid charges or charges that have no personal balance will not appear. If you can not find the charge you expected to see, press F8 – Show Insurance to view both insurance and personal charges. You can also press F6 – Correct Mistakes or F7 – Family Editor (from which you can run a Collection report or Family History report) to analyze the account and find out when the charge was paid off.
If Necessary, Indicate How to Apportion the Payment
If you selected charges that exceed the value of the payment, you can use the next screen to indicate how much of the payment should be applied towards each charge.
Customized Behavior: You can configure Partner to automatically distribute the payment among the charges or to apply the money towards the oldest charge first. Contact PCC for more information.
F1 – Save
Press F1 to save your payment and return to the main
pam screen. Your payment has been posted, and you will see the updated “New Balance” column.
When you first run
pam, it asks you for an account name. Once you have found an account, you are presented with the payment-entry screen:
This screen contains useful demographic information for the account, provides links to several other Partner programs, and allows you to begin posting a payment by entering information in the available fields.
The demographic information includes account name and contact information. You can also review the Status field, which may list important billing statuses for the family, such as “Overdue” or “Bad Check.” The screen also shows you a list of dependents to the family and a balance summary, aged by transaction date, for Personal, Insurance, and Medicaid balances on the account.
Look-Up Fields: Both the “Payment/Adjustment” field and the “Provider” field are look-up fields. You can enter an abbreviation or use an asterisk (*) to look at a list of possible entries. Common answers for the “Payment/Adjustment” field are “Personal Check,” “Cash,” or “Courtesy Adjustment.”
More Demographic Information: Press Page Down to view a quick summary of other account demographic information, including insurance information and recent account notes. You can press Page Up to return to this screen. You can also press F7 – Family Editor to run
fame and make changes to the account information.
Link Payments: Whenever you post a payment, you should use
pam‘s Link Payments feature to link payments to the particular charges they are paying off. In other words, you should specify for which charges the payment is intended. If you don’t press F4 – Link Payments, and press F1 to save the payment, you will be posting an unlinked or open-item payment. Open-item payments are still applied towards the account’s oldest personal balance, but they may float around on an account, making it difficult to track and understand an account’s history and remaining balance.
New Balance: Once you have posted a payment, the final column in the balance summary, “New Bal” will be updated with the accounts new outstanding balance:
Posting Personal Overpayments/Credits: Posting a personal overpayment in Partner is simple. Use
pam to post a payment and do not press F4 – Link Payments. The account will have a credit, which you can then refund or leave on the account until the next visit. The credit will automatically be applied to any outstanding balances on the account, and you can link it to the charges by running
Get a Receipt: Select “Print receipt for this payment” to generate a paper receipt when you press F1.
F1 – Save
Press F1 to save any payments you have entered as open-item payments and quit
pam. You can then enter a new account name or press F12 to quit and run a different program. If you have entered a payment amount, you should consider pressing F4 – Link Payments and assigning the payment to specific charges before pressing F1.
F3 – Post a Refund
Press F3 to run the
refund program. Use
refund to post refunds or any other adjustments that take money away from an account or increase the balance.
F4 – Link Payments
Press F4 after entering a payment type (and check number, if desired) to select outstanding charges to which the payment should be applied. If you post a payment without using F4, it will be an open-item payment that Partner will automatically apply to the oldest unpaid charge.
Function Keys While Specifying Payments: On the first Link Payments screen, function keys are available to batch claims, print paper claims, print bills, run
oops, and run the Family Editor (
F5 – Print a Bill
Press F5 to print a paper bill, for any desired date range, for the account.
F6 – Correct Mistakes
Press F6 to run
oops, the “Correct Mistakes” program. In
oops, you can change the pending status of charges, delete payments or charges, and adjust various visit information. If you need to link or unlink payments from charges, run
oops. For full documentation on
oops, read Correct Mistakes.
F7 – Family Editor
Press F7 to run
fame, the Family Editor. In
fame, you can change account demographic information, including mailing address and insurance policy information. The Family Editor also provides access to the Collection Report, which can help you understand an account’s outstanding balances. For full documentation on
fame, read Editing Patients and Accounts.
F8 – Acct History
Press F8 to run
tater, the Account History report. This report, which can be restricted by date and type of transaction, shows you a history of all transactions on an account.