"It hasn't always been that way because the organization hadn't been growing," Boydell says. "We had really good results in some entities and others, mostly where there was ease of use issues or competition in their market—those were harder to grow. Overall, this past quarter we had significant results."
So, is the physician liaison role on its way out? Perhaps, but most likely not anytime soon. Even THR kept two physician liaison-like physicians, called Retention Specialist, sat two entities based on their specific needs. Still, 22 of THR's 24 hospitals are functioning just fine without a physician liaison role.
"We transitioned away from that," Boydell says. "There are some that are left within the organization, but nobody has put in any new position that is similar to [the physician liaison]."
Regardless, putting the emphasis on business growth, and less on physician relations, is a critical strategy for all hospitals and health systems in order to stay competitive.