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Physician Alignment Strategies to Counter Uncertainty

Michael Zeis, for HealthLeaders Media, September 18, 2012

This article appears in the September 2012 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.

Physician alignment is, in part, about filling the beds and securing physician buy-in. According to Lloyd K. Ford, president and CEO of Riverview Regional Medical Center, a 281-bed acute care hospital in Gadsden, Ala., "It’s about maintaining current levels, plus growth. Ultimately, we are always looking for growth." Increasingly, healthcare organizations are adjusting the mix of physician organizational models to achieve that alignment.

The 2012 HealthLeaders Media Physician Alignment Survey shows that the medical staff model of working with independent physicians is in decline. While it is used by 67% of organizations today, looking forward three years, only 50% of respondents expect to include the medical staff model among their top three staffing models. "You are starting to see the end of the independent physician," says Ford, who served as lead advisor for this month’s Intelligence Report.

In the three-year time frame, nearly three-quarters (71%) of respondents expect their percentage of employed physicians to increase. 

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