A new year has already begun! If you are hoping for significant year-over-year improvement you need to act – and sooner rather than later. Here’s how great practices help ensure that each year is better than the last.
- Examine past performance. Consider what data points are important to review. As a guide, great practices will compare their performance against at least these benchmarks every year:
- Total revenue per full time equivalent (FTE) physician
- Total operating expense as a percentage of total medical revenue
- Total visits/procedures per FTE physician
- Percentage of total A/R aged 120 days more
- Bad debt due to fee for service activity per FTE physician
- Determine what the numbers mean to you. Compare your performance between 2012 and 2011 to evaluate your year-over-year performance. Are you clearly performing better or worse? Then assess why there is a difference. If you did better was it because you were more assertive? Dit you have clearer established goals to guide you? Perhaps changes in performance can be traced to changes in staff or actions taken to improve contract reimbursement? Did you implement a marketing plan or are differences between years merely chance variation? If there was no change in 2012 or you did worse, you will want to take decisive action to make 2013 a better year.
- Plan for 2013. Of course, given the challenging business environment, leaders of improving practices make planning a priority. I recommend a strategic planning session be scheduled well in advance. Scheduling an off site meeting in early February can minimize interruptions. If you have a skilled communication facilitator on your staff, and your practice isn’t facing especially serious challenges, your practice might conduct your meeting without an outside consultant. On the other hand, a consultant can increase the value of strategic planning sessions by facilitating communications on difficult topics, providing an objective overview of your practice’s performance, helping you understand your position in the marketplace, and assisting leadership in determining goals for the upcoming year.
Practice leaders it is not too early to think about the steps you can take to protect and guide the practice’s future.
Capko & Company wishes you a prosperous new year!
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