Friday, July 22, 2011

Improving Physician Integration Culture

With the trend of hospital employment and practice buy-outs, one sensitive aspect of the transition is the cultural clash that occurs between hospitals and physicians. To alleviate the challenges of hospital-physician integration, focus on leadership, teamwork, and communication; this according to a study by Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) magazine.

According to a recent Accenture Health report, by 2013 less than 1/3 of physician practices will remain independent; in addition, healthcare mergers and acquisitions have hit an all-time high. Merger and acquisition deals are 26% more likely to be successful if all parties pay attention to resolving cultural differences during the negotiation and prior to the implementation of the new hospital group.

Culture can run the gamut of treatment of patients, referring physicians, and employees; decision-making process; performance rewards; risk; and quality and costs. Just as important is identifying who the leaders are in the physician practice and the hospital. The merging organizations should use these representatives to drive the process and communicate every step to each other.

A merger, buy-out, or lease of a practice can be more successful from the beginning if hospitals and physicians develop a measurable vision, understand the joint agreement, implement an organizational communication plan, analyze results, and measure cultural alignment.

Read the full article in Healthcare Financial Management Association magazine, or click here:

Monday, July 18, 2011

Rewards of Staying in a Private Practice

There has been so much reported on the decreasing number of private practices, it is refreshing to read about the rewards of staying in a private practice.

Although the hospital employment model has become more attractive to many physicians seeking new positions, the private practice model will always appeal to some physicians and there will be a market for the private practice, even in today's changing healthcare climate.

Some physicians, particularly those more entrepreneurial-minded, will always prefer to control how they wish to run their practice and not be 'owned' by a hospital which will dictate how they must operate their practice. They will deal with all aspects of running a practice including billing and overhead, however they can have 100% decision making power and elect how they wish to market and present their practice.

Read the full article in American Medical News, or click here:

Monday, July 11, 2011

Hospital Employment Alternative: Lease Your Practice to a Hospital

There has been a lot of press on the trend toward hospital employment, driven from both physician candidates seeking new positions as well as hospital's desiring for employed physicians to be a go-to in-house resource.

This article from American Medical News provides an alternative to a typical hospital employment model: private practices can actually lease their practices to a hospital.

Although these terms can vary significantly, a private practice can often maintain most control over how their practice is run. Normally the hospitals lease hard-assets as opposed to purchasing the practice and creating a hospital employed situation for the physicians. Or, a lease can be an experiment for a private practice to see how it would be affected if the practice did decide eventually to sell to a hospital.

Read the full article in American Medical News, or click here: