Top challenges for independent medical practice leadership explored; Part 1 of 3
Physician burnout, competitive market pressures, and rising costs are all reasons cited for the decline in the number of independent medical practices in the US.
In this series, we’ll explore the Top 3 issues teams are facing.
Rising costs of IT systems and of data collection prohibit analytics making rate negotiations and APMs difficult to impossible
Independent physicians are frustrated with a perceived lack of power when it comes to payer contract negotiation and it may start with IT costs. Implementing a new EHR may cost a solo physician practice upwards of $150,000 with ongoing annual fees over $50,000 per year. Add on other operational IT systems and patient engagement tools, and the practice’s annual IT spend may not leave room for the data aggregation and analysis required for contracted rate negotiations. Those who attempt to negotiate contracts on their own without data often make little progress.
For smaller practices, even collecting or aggregating the data may be thought to be too complex or expensive. Even armed with a good data set, amid busy patient schedules it may be hard to commit the time required to analyze population data across a panel. When IT resources have already been allocated to an EHR, practice management, and patient engagement solutions, this additional resource expense may be a non-starter. And, adding to the level of frustration, poor product support from IT vendors create distractions and additional resource spending that don’t get teams any closer to negotiating higher rates for quality care delivered.
The problems faced by these businesses are fluid. And the collaboration, strategic mindset, and continuous operational improvement required for these businesses to flourish and grow is difficult to add from dedicated in-house employees. Hiring an experienced team of healthcare consultants that act like a ‘Virtual Healthcare Executive” is vital for the proliferation of the independent medical practice.
H3 has solutions in each of these areas and offers engagements of various sizes based on your team’s objectives and timelines. Contact us today for more information or to get started.