About Us

Fire Ant Software is focused on making it easier for healthcare providers to deliver services in the workers’ compensation system. We help physicians get paid faster for the services they perform while reducing their paperwork and minimizing the time spent away from patients.

This in turn helps injured workers get back on the job faster, so that they can provide for their families and contribute to the economy.

Our technology platform automates and streamlines the notoriously complex billing and collections processes that have plagued workers’ compensation claims for years. We eliminate the grunt work so that our customers can spend more time treating patients.

We are currently beta testing our solution in select clinics and surgery centers, and we make it available to the public later this year.

Workers’ Comp Primer

The workers’ compensation system was created 100 years ago to provide benefits to employees who have suffered a work-related injury while protecting employers from costly litigation related to these on-the-job injuries.The system is supposed to be simple. If you are injured on the job, regardless of whose fault the injury was, your employer must pay for your medical bills and provide disability payments until you are able to return to work. In return, the employee is prohibited from suing the employer, and punitive damages cannot be awarded. In lieu of the court system, a workers’ compensation commission oversees injury-related disputes between employees and employers and resolves these disputes via an arbitration process.

The employer is required to purchase a workers’ compensation insurance policy, and health care providers bill these insurance companies in a manner similar to how they would bill Medicare or private insurance. If an insurance company believes that the claim is illegitimate, it can deny the claim, and the case will likely be heard at the commission, where the arbitrator will decide whether or not the insurance company should pay the medical bill.

The Crisis in Workers’ Compensation

Every state’s regulations are different, but they are all very complex. Standard medical billing software was built for Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurance, and it can’t keep up 50 different sets of workers’ comp regulations. This leaves healthcare providers to deal with the complexity themselves, and they invest a lot of time learning the quirks of the system.

Meanwhile, workers’ compensation insurance carriers are losing money. Policy premiums are down because fewer people are employed during the recession, and expenses are at an all-time high due to rising healthcare costs. The carriers are looking for any way they can to save money, which means they look for any reason they can think of to deny a workers’ comp claim.

The insurance carriers use sophisticated software systems to reject claims automatically. If the physician didn’t follow the billing procedures exactly, the claim will be rejected. If the patient is taking longer to heal than expected, or the treatments cost more than expected, the claim can be rejected.

Each of these cases must be resolved at the workers’ compensation commission, which means the commission is hugely overloaded. In some states, it can take years for a case to be heard. During that time, the physician is not being paid, and worse, the patient is probably not being treated. The patient can’t return to work, which means the employer is out a worker and the employee can’t provide for his or her family.

This hassle is so great that many physicians refuse to treat workers compensation patients at all.

Fire Ant Can Help

At Fire Ant, we think we can help. By utilizing the same type of sophisticated software that the insurance carriers use, we can detect billing mistakes before they are submitted to the carriers. We can respond rapidly to carriers’ questions and inquiries. And we can help the physicians present a more compelling argument at the commission so that they are likely to win the case.

To learn more about our services, or to be notified when our technology is ready for prime time, send us a note.

The Team

Michael Trafton, Founder and CEO

Michael Trafton

Founder and CEO

For more than 20 years, Michael has been helping the most successful companies in the U.S. design, develop, and deploy mission-critical technology solutions. A serial entrepreneur, Michael is an expert in building high performance teams with amazing cultures. His most recent venture, Blue Fish Development Group, was voted as the best place to work in Central Texas and among the fastest growing companies in Austin.

Michael has a passion for helping first time entrepreneurs reach their goals through mentoring, coaching, and investing. He is a mentor and investor in Capital Factory, a top-ranked startup accelerator for technology companies, and he serves on the advisory board of several local startups. He is a regular speaker on the topics of Enterprise Content Management, Entrepreneurship, and Company Culture.

Michael has a degree in Computer Science from Rice University.

A.J. Whitney, Founder and CTO

A.J. Whitney

Founder and CTO

A.J. Whitney has more than 20 years of experience developing software products and solutions for companies such as Bausch & Lomb, Dell, and Sun Microsystems. He is an expert at creating software products that are high performance, easy to use, and easy to support.

A.J.’s career spans both product development, where quality, compatibility, and supportability are most important, and enterprise software consulting, where schedule, budget, and client communication are key. He has developed solutions used by tens of thousands of users processing millions of electronic documents.

A.J. has a degree in Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.

Contact

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Fire Ant World Headquarters

Fire Ant Software
901 S. Mopac Expy #3-120
Austin, TX 78746