Sinai Hospital said yesterday that it is looking for outside vendors to take over professional billing services it now provides. The move would eliminate up to 45 jobs in the billing office.
It also could reduce the amount it costs to bill patients. Like many teaching hospitals, Sinai sends out bills for its staff physicians for a fee.
But the size of its staff -- 130 doctors -- means that the effort costs more than that of its competitors.
The professional billing department handles fees for radiology, surgery and other medical procedures performed by doctors who are hired by the hospital.
The hospital collects $20 million to $25 million annually in doctors' fees, at a cost of 13 percent of the billings. Reducing the cost by 1 percent could save about $250,000, said Art Wieland, senior vice president and chief financial officer.
He said the hospital will try to place employees with the new vendor or in other hospital jobs. Professional billing staff represent about three-eighths of the billing department, Mr. Wieland said.
The hospital has no plans to contract out the rest of its billings, he said.