Article

The challenges of medical practice management

Managing a medical practice has become harder than ever, especially for independent providers and practices. Because of the increasing burdens related to medical practice management, physicians today work the same number of hours but may earn less money. The Physicians Foundation found that physicians spend over 22 percent of their time on non-clinical paperwork, and 62 percent of physicians said they provided $25,000 or more every year in uncompensated care.1

One of the biggest challenges of effective medical practice management is handling the onslaught of administrative work that’s become a part of today’s health care environment. Managing a medical practice today means adapting to new payment models, new clinical care models, declining reimbursement, and mandates such as the Meaningful Use program and the transition to ICD-10 – all while keeping costs down and delivering excellent patient care.

Effective medical practice management also entails knowing how to attract and retain top talent, and identifying and investing in the right health information technology to keep up with mandates and guidelines.

What does it take to succeed? Any successful independent practice of the future needs medical practice management tools and services to manage growth by supporting efficiency, care coordination, patient engagement, and the oncoming transition to value based payment models. Yet, many medical practice management systems lack the flexibility and scalability to satisfy these needs and can’t manage the mounting pressures of growing and managing a medical practice.

The medical practice management solutions best poised to enable growth deliver a practice workflow that seamlessly integrates front-end intelligence and back-office knowledge and support. This gives physicians and practice staff the ability to streamline their practice operations, boost productivity, and focus on patient care — and it requires much more than just billing or EHR software. The right vendor should be able to handle and support vital medical practice management tasks such as patient scheduling, claims submission and tracking, and researching and implementing real-time updates to payer rules so that they appear for practices automatically. Using the right technological platform, all this can be done at scale by the vendor, using their own staff and data to drive improvements for all their providers and practices.

1 The Physicians Foundation. September 2012. A Survey of America’s Physicians: Practice Patterns and Perspectives.

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