Administrative waste permeates every level of the health care industry, including the physician practice. Time and money wasted on redundant or unnecessary administrative tasks could instead be spent helping patients and building your practice. Use the tools and information available here to develop valuable efficiencies in your practice.
You don’t need to hire a consultant to tell you about the inefficiencies in your business processes. The curious and analytical mind that has made you a successful physician or practice administrator will serve you in making your practice operations more efficient. There are several standardized methods for process improvement, but most follow the same path that a physician takes when treating a patient:
- Define the problem (Where does it hurt?)
- Define the desired end state (It shouldn’t hurt.)
- Determine the cause of the problem (Why does it hurt?)
- Recommend a solution (Take two of these…)
- Confirm that the solution was appropriate (Follow-up appointment)
The AMA’s Administrative Rapid Process Improvement (RPI) initiative shows that it doesn’t require a lot of time and effort to make meaningful improvements to your processes related to business operations, practice connectivity, collections and patient satisfaction. Use the information and videos here to define your issues, compile and analyze data, act on your findings and validate your changes.
This overview video outlines how process improvement is a model for success, letting you improve processes and profitability.
When patient feedback is collected and acted upon in a meaningful way, the physician’s office can use the data to create satisfied and loyal patients who will help a practice grow. View the AMA’s educational tools for patient satisfaction for more information.
The AMA has developed the educational resource “Fee schedule analysis: Using your complete practice cost as a guide” to help physicians and their practice staff recognize the need to establish their practice fee schedule based on what it actually costs to provide a service rather than basing their fee schedule on what a third-party payer or other entity wants to pay. This resource includes a 12-step guide to help physician practices create their own unique physician practice fee schedule with an easy-to-complete spreadsheet that will allow physician practices to include additional markup percentages to account for profit, contributions to reserves and future capital expenditures.
The AMA has developed three resources to help physicians access physician data generated by public and private health insurers and strategically use them to improve practice efficiency and delivery of care, as well as ensure that payers and other reporting bodies are not misusing the information.
View "Open access scheduling: Coulf it improve your patients' experiences and your bottom line?" to access an educational flyer on making same-day appointments available to your patients. This resource will help you better understand this unique type of scheduling system, consider the benefits and challenges of implementation, and see if open access scheduling is right for your practice.