Your Go-to Guide on Charge Automation in Epic
Article May 06, 2020
In today’s competitive medical practice marketplace, it can be challenging for independent physicians to thrive on their own. Increasing healthcare regulations, evolving insurance rules, and mounting pressures to consolidate make it difficult for smaller, more siloed practices to keep pace. On top of that, independent physicians are often strapped with all the administrative headaches of a larger medical center —but under one, minimally-staffed roof.
But there is good news. Emerging digital tools and resources are empowering independent practices to take control of their businesses in ways that weren’t possible before—and many physicians are eager to leverage this new, robust technology.
In fact, in one survey nearly half of physician respondents agreed that more innovations in business models designed specifically to focus on cost savings and efficiency would help them maintain their autonomy.
Simply put, physicians want to do what they were trained to do: care for the health of their patients. Management should be secondary (if not almost entirely on autopilot). Achieving this important balance starts with unburdening providers and staff from basic manual tasks—and finding ways to leverage new tools and technologies as much as possible. Here are three that can make a world of difference.
Between managing patient accounts, hospital affiliations, insurance companies, and vendors, financial housekeeping for a smaller, independent practice is often enough to keep one (or even three) employees busy full-time. Among the most effective, and common, ways for independent physicians to improve their financial health is to outsource the management of their revenue cycle.
Through a combination of medical experts and cutting-edge tools designed to hunt down lost profit and unclog billing backlogs, this dedicated effort can have an immediate impact on your bottom line—often in the range of 5-20%. That’s a discernible difference by anyone’s standards.
Additionally, new tools can provide insights on anything related to your practice’s performance, such as staff productivity, year-over-year growth, how well your clinic is yielding versus Medicare, etc.―all in real-time. With easy-to-read dashboards, it’s like an X-ray into the inner workings of your practice. You’ll immediately see what’s working well and what needs to be fixed.
Many administrative tasks are time-consuming, labor-intensive, and expensive to handle in-house (not to mention that overtaxed, understaffed medical practices degrade the patient experience). These admin tasks are begging for technical innovation. Thankfully, many digital solutions can now vastly improve—if not completely take over—some of the most mundane of all management tasks, including scheduling, routine communications, recruiting, and supply purchasing.
From intuitive patient management software that keeps your patient data in one place (and ensures you keep a full schedule) to third party solutions that can help you find and hire the right providers for your practice (for a whole lot less time and money than if you did it on your own), there are a host of high value, reasonably priced resources for independent physicians who are looking for ways to level up their practice.
Pre-digital age, sharing patient information with other providers was difficult. Printing, mailing, and faxing medical histories and test results was (and is) costly and time-consuming. Not to mention, these paper-based approaches can delay treatment. Of course, with the advent of the Electronic Health Record (EHR), physicians obtained faster and more efficient ways to access, organize, and share patient data.
Now we’re seeing the next generation of patient data sharing emerge, as larger patient data networks become available to physicians. By aggregating patient data from a wide variety of affiliated providers, it’s now possible for doctors to eliminate manual searching, duplicate testing, and other inefficiencies that result from incomplete patient data. Not only do these resources and tools improve workflow and save time and energy, but they ultimately enable better care.
Your personal concierge at Digital Physician Lounge is here for this exact purpose—to inform you about what products and services are available to you, and guide you toward the ones that make the most sense for your practice. If you want to spend less time on mundane task, and more on quality patient care, ask one of our experienced healthcare experts how we can take some of these To Do’s off your plate—today.