Don't Let Physician Practice Acquisition Derail Your Back Office
For several years now, hospitals and health systems nationwide have been acquiring physician practices. It's a potential growth opportunity for hospitals and health systems, and a stabilizing move for small group practices which may be financially unable to absorb all the possible reimbursement losses due to the changes in Medicare and Medicaid.
In fact, in the coming year 32% of financial leaders say they expect to acquire another organization, and the service lines they'd most like to grow are geriatrics, cancer and oncology, and primary care, according to the HealthLeaders Media Industry Survey 2011. While growth is great, that doesn't mean it doesn't come without causing a few hiccups—especially in your back office.
In the fervor to grow, many have a tendency to look all the benefits (translation, money) that a new acquisition will bring. However, in the haste to reach for success, many also fail to look at the challenges that may result from these purchases—not only in terms of physician alignment with organizational goals, but in this case, in terms of back office processes.
The first step financial leaders should take is a full examination of whether or not the back office has the capacity to handle what's about to come its way. After all, once you've completed the acquisition process, the last thing you need is to discover that you aren't able to handle the new influx of new patient claims that come with your newly acquired physicians and your cash flow suddenly decreases up instead of increases.
- As Medicare Advantage Cuts Loom, Disagreement Over Program's Stability
- Doctors Feel Pressure to Accept Risk-based Reimbursement
- Surgical Checklists Unused in 10% of Hospitals, CMS Data Shows
- Centralizing the Revenue Cycle Protects the Bottom Line
- A Fresh Look at End-of-Life Care
- CA Fines 8 Hospitals for Medical Errors
- 3 in 4 Patients Want E-mail Consultations
- Heart Attack Patient Costs Skyrocket Beyond 30 Days
- ACGME Chief Sees 'Huge' Risk of Error in Proposed Assistant Physician Licensure
- 3 Insider Tips on Cutting Costs without Strangling Growth