A good number of physician practices are facing difficult times as they continue the battle to remain independent as the medical sector places more and more emphasis on value-based care. Apart from the threat of giant competitors, they are also tackling stiffer regulations, falling reimbursement rates, and bigger administrative demands, among others.
These difficulties have led to many medical practices shutting down or being bought out by larger hospitals. However, daunting these challenges may be, there are still small providers that have remained steadfast in being independent and are thriving in their value-based care surroundings.
In some instances, some smaller practices are even breaking away from larger hospital chains to form their own independent offices. Independently practicing physicians that have bucked the trend are focusing on new goals. These include giving that unique or personal touch to their patients, creating a working environment wherein doctors were not overwhelmed nor underwhelmed with work, making sure that patients get quality care with due respect to all preventive measures, treating illnesses, and providing chronic management care. Like any formidable organization, it all begins with putting the right tools and processes into place.
Here is a closer look at how to build a successful and long-lasting independent practice.
- Define your goals and get everyone to move in that direction. You must get everyone’s buy-in towards more value-based care. This means that your office staff, your nurses, your physicians, and even your billing personnel must all look and move towards that objective. Value-based care is all about being responsive and proactive towards a patient’s concerns and needs. If you wish, you can also focus on specialized issues concerning their communities, such as substance abuse, the aging population, or diabetes care.
- Take to heart the rules and responsibilities surrounding your practice. As the move from the conventional fee-based approach to a value-based system solidifies, it is essential for your success that your practice is on top of the learning curve. Find out where you can acquire credible learning and resources to stay up to date with the ever-evolving game as well as organizations that can provide training to your staff.
- Making the use of technology to improve patient care and system management. For smaller practices with limited staff and resources, technology is a great benefit. Move towards Electronic Health Records and systems for population health, medical practice management, and care coordination can help with various administrative work, improve engagement with patients, and enhance reporting.
Just remember that for technology to work well for your practice, it must integrate seamlessly with your systems that are already in place. Keep your solutions and workflows that are already in place on top of mind when on the lookout for new technology to employ.
While the challenges that smaller practices face may be daunting, there is a formula you can follow so that medical practice reimbursement changes do not have to be a threat to your game.