Running the profession of medicine, requires the adoption of two roles – the scientist’s and entrepreneur’s – while many times this dual role, is a huge challenge, as patient care consumes most of a doctor’s time.
For a practice to be efficient and cost-effective, it is important to monitor, measure and work on specific benchmarks. In this article, a number of key areas will be examined, ranging from attracting potential patients/clients, to studying the quality of care, as well as monitoring financial indicators, as to effectively evaluate your practice.
The main points of reference which concern your practice, will therefore be developed: clinical, functional, and financial.
1. Clinical/qualitative benchmarks
Fully recording and evaluating the clinical data concerning your patients can be difficult, especially when it comes to the results of health tests. The important fact is to improve their quality of life, in which everyone possesses a slightly different perception of.
You can therefore conduct research on the improvement of symptoms, monitor the frequency of their hospital admissions, or any other element that may affect the quality of their life.
It is known that the challenge for the primary care doctor is to work for prevention, avoiding hospitalization, while offering quality care and support to the patient.
2. Operational benchmarks
They regard business elements, which can differentiate your practice from competition. These data include measurements such as monitoring the waiting time of patients in your office, or the services you offer to facilitate them, such as the reminder of their appointment through a text message, email or phone call, or the ability to make an appointment online etc.
What you should take seriously into account, is that we are now in a new era of healthcare, with a patient focus approach. This fact requires a careful examination of the patient’s experience, from the first moment of contact, to the provision of care.
That’s why it’s important to track your patients’ reviews and comments through an automated process, with the help of texts or emails, drawing useful conclusions to improve your practice.
3. Financial benchmarks
The financial reference points to be examined, begin before you even practice your practice, with the care of the patient. In what ways do you attract new patients? How do you communicate the services offered?
At this time, there are many opportunities to track the conversion rates of potential customers to appointments. A website, an app, or your social media presence will help you boost your reputation by having a strong online presence and visibility in search engines.
Enhance interaction through digital technology and bring your patients closer together. You should also consider the possibilities that technology and software can offer to improve your practice and make it easier for patients.
This could be done by reminding the appointment with sms or email, the ability to fill in the patient’s medical history electronically, etc.
The care model is what determines the measurements
The economic indicators that you will need to monitor vary depending on the model of the business and the type of practice you offer.
In a model of full remuneration for the services offered, the more you offer, the more you will be paid – in the event, however, that you spend a lot of time with someone and do not receive the corresponding fee, you will have a problem financially.
Adopt ways to offer care to your patients, without requiring a visit to the doctor’s office.
In the remuneration model for service, you should pay special attention to the profit rate. Improving this ratio may require an increase in the number of available payment options.
Ιn the model of care based on the value, and the total amount of time it will take to complete a treatment, where doctors are paid in a capitalized way, financial benchmarks are more linked to the quality of patient care.
This means that doctors will have to work more effectively to reduce the frequency of patient visits. With value-based care, gaining patient confidence is more important, while experience depends significantly on communication.
An obvious metric to track your practice’s performance, are the receivable accounts. Common problems with this include factoring in your costs of providing care (space, staff, medical supplies, etc.).
In this case, effective management and possibly delegating it to an external partner will provide you with a reliable performance result.
The last point that is emphasized is the identification of the general elements of your practice. Who are you treating and why, and how did you decide this? Do you accept insurance funds? And which ones? And if not, for what reasons?
All this extends to guiding patients, who are often confused by their health care journey, in understanding everything from how to make an appointment to the costs of their care.
The more that a doctor can hold a patient’s hand and guide them through the things where they have the most fear and doubt, the more value that doctor is going to create…