5 Vital Business Signs for Medical Groups

Debra Shute, August 24, 2017

Practice leaders explain how key metrics help groups meet their missions.

"We always thought we were doing a great job," says Meryl Moss, MPA, EMHL, chief operating officer of Coastal Medical, a primary care group practice in Rhode Island, with 19 locations throughout the state. 

But when the group began measuring performance more deliberately to participate in meaningful use, the National Committee for Quality Assurance’s certification, and similar programs, practice leaders recognized that their perception didn’t align with reality.

For example, Moss and colleagues learned that elderly patients weren’t receiving flu shots as consistently across all clinics as they could be, and that numerous patients were using the ED unnecessarily.

Related: CMS Finalizes 2017 Changes for MSSP ACOs

As a result of standardizing and systematizing its operations, Coastal Medical can now empirically say that it received a Medicare Shared Savings Program quality score of 100% in 2015.

Prioritizing Performance Areas

"The idea of working toward quality for our patients fit in with Coastal’s culture," Moss says.

"Physicians here didn’t want to just jump through hoops to chase an incentive. They absolutely wanted anything we did to be connected to higher-quality care and better patient outcomes."

As a result, the group resolved to continue to tracking its performance in the following key areas, in order of importance:

  1. Quality
  2. Patient satisfaction
  3. Utilization
  4. Cost
Debra Shute

Debra Shute is the Senior Physicians Editor for HealthLeaders Media.

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