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Are you looking for ways to improve and scale your medical practice? This is no easy task for any physician or health administrator, and it requires a concerted effort from your entire staff.
Whether you are running a medical clinic, dental office, nursing home, or rehabilitation center, here are 11 practical ways in which you can improve your practice.
Invest in Healthcare Accounting Services
As a physician or health administrator, your time is best spent focusing on patient care. At the same time, your practice’s finances must be carefully managed to ensure that your practice is operating honestly, sustainably, and in compliance with all regulations.
Hiring a company that specializes in healthcare accounting services can help eliminate the burden of keeping a close eye on all of your practice’s financial activity. A healthcare accounting company can assist with all elements of your practice’s finances—from billing and receivables to audit preparedness and more.
Focus on Improving Patient Care
Without a doubt, the most effective way to improve your practice is to prioritize and improve patient care across the board. This will keep your schedule full and help you maintain a positive reputation in your community.
This means hiring empathetic staff members, putting the patient’s healthcare needs first, and going above and beyond to make sure that every patient feels comfortable when they visit your facility.
Delegate Mundane Tasks Where Possible
Burnout is especially prevalent in the healthcare industry. As a physician or administrator, there is only so much you can do to keep your practice running smoothly without putting your own health and well-being in jeopardy.
Rather than attempting to juggle more than you can reasonably handle, make a habit of delegating tasks to other staff members. If a mundane or routine task doesn’t require your expertise or experience, it should be delegated or outsourced!
Build Your Network of Specialists
The medical field is broad, and chances are that your practice will encounter patient needs that are outside your immediate field of expertise. For this reason, it’s important that you build up a network of trusted specialists.
Take your time to vet these practitioners and build relationships with them, as referring a patient to someone who delivers a poor patient experience can easily tarnish your reputation as well.
Reduce Your Number of “No-Shows”
If you’re a physician, a “no-show” might bring a brief sense of relief—a much-needed break in your relentless work schedule. However, it’s important to remember that cancellations are costly, and too many canceled appointments can have a significant impact on your practice’s bottom line.
Actively work to reduce your practice’s number of “no-shows” by confirming appointments with your patients. If you don’t have the staff to do this for every patient, start with the longest or most costly appointments.
Join or Form a Group Practice
If you are not already part of a group, you might consider joining one or starting your own. The reality is that one physician is extremely limited in what he or she can achieve.
On the other hand, a team of practitioners can lean on each other for support, pool resources, consolidate staffing, and share risk. Not to mention, they may find it easier to increase brand awareness and have a greater influence on their community.
Strike the Ideal Workload Allocation
Staffing remains the biggest challenge that healthcare practices face today, largely because it’s easy for employees to feel overwhelmed or burned out. If you are part of a large practice or group, however, it can be difficult to make sure that every staff member is given a balanced workload. In many cases, you might find that a provider is overworked while another staff member has very little on their plate.
By constantly evaluating your practice’s workflow, adjusting staff roles when needed, and asking providers to delegate accordingly, you can help create a steady yet reasonable workload for all of your practice’s employees.
Get Rid of Overtime
While there may be occasions when working overtime is necessary, it should not become routine for your practice. It is not only expensive for your practice to continue paying your employees overtime wages, but it can also cause your staff to feel tired and overworked.
What’s more, employees may come to expect overtime hours and become disgruntled once they are no longer available. Optimize your patient schedule so that overtime becomes the exception—not the norm!
Make Staff Training a Priority
As we saw in 2020, the healthcare industry is constantly evolving and reacting to the latest health challenges. What’s more, medical technology is advancing at a swift rate. Practices that fail to adapt to the ever-changing health landscape can quickly become obsolete.
Of course, adopting the latest technology and industry practices requires a complete buy-in from your entire staff. Therefore, staff training days should become routine events on your calendar. Use this time to not only help your employees hone their abilities and learn new skills but also build positive culture.
Implement an Effective Management System
Without an efficient management system, overseeing patients, schedules, and claims is often much harder than it needs to be. Of course, a management system is only as effective as the person operating it. Identify a capable individual who can learn the software and effectively train others on how to master it.
When fully integrated, management and scheduling software can help alleviate your staff’s workload by automating routine tasks. Validating patient eligibility, scheduling appointments, sending reminders, and tracking claims are just a few of the many administrative tasks that can be automated!
Ask for Patient Feedback
As a healthcare provider, receiving poor feedback can be a hard pill to swallow. However, it’s important to remember that patient feedback plays a crucial role in helping you improve and grow your practice.
Rather than waiting for poor feedback to appear in online reviews that can damage your practice’s reputation or lashing out whenever you receive a negative patient review, ask every patient to complete a survey shortly after their appointment. This will not only allow you to keep negative opinions private but also indicate to patients that you care about their healthcare experience.
Whenever you receive new feedback, be sure to embrace it and make the necessary changes to improve your practice’s patient experience!