From Cardiologist to CV Service Line VP

Despite making unprecedented investments in cardiologist integration, hospitals are struggling to effectively leverage the knowledge and expertise of their physicians in growing and managing the CV service line. The lack of a defined growth strategy leaves many cardiologists uncomfortably waffling between the role of clinician and that of administrator, unsure what influence they can or should wield. Private practice physicians are in an even more uncomfortable position, as they also want a voice in service line development discussions but are uncertain of their role. So, what’s the answer? Continue reading

Patient Contact Centers: Much More Than Glorified Switchboards

Businesses that restrict customer or client access to services should not expect to be in business for long.  Yet in healthcare, provider organizations have a long history of building barriers to patients obtaining care.  There are a litany of ways organizations hinder access:  answering telephone calls only during limited, inconvenient hours; failing to fully develop Web-based access points; restricting physician schedules based on what works best for the organization (not its patients); having too many points of contact for seemingly basic tasks, like reaching a nurse; and the list goes on.  In the new healthcare environment, health systems and provider groups need to find ways to break down barriers to care – and patient contact centers represent one strategy for doing just that. Continue reading

Patient-Centered Care Is Coming, But Are You Ready?

The path to a better healthcare system starts with primary care. Changing how care is organized and delivered among primary care settings has the potential to transform the entire healthcare system. As physician groups face mounting pressures to produce accessible, high-quality care at lower costs, the patient-centered medical home (PCMH) is emerging as a primary vehicle for care delivery transformation. We are increasingly finding the PCMH model embedded in accountable care organizations (ACOs), clinically integrated networks (CINs), and population health management initiatives. But as critical as the PCMH model has become to redesigning care delivery, not everyone is ready for patient-centered care. With that in mind, we have developed a quantitative and qualitative PCMH Readiness Assessment Methodology that reviews an organization’s ability to successfully operate and sustain a PCMH. This tool is designed to leverage existing strengths, address operational weaknesses, and identify resources to invest in key capabilities. Continue reading

ACOs – Is an EHR Enough?

Accountable Care Organization

Since its inception in 2009 as a key piece of the Affordable Care Act, the goals of the accountable care organization (ACO) have been clear: provide timely, coordinated care; manage at-risk populations; and eliminate redundancy across the continuum. But while the goals may be straightforward, the best ways to implement an ACO are not. Continue reading

Circumventing the PCP Shortage

The warnings have been pretty clear – demand for primary care physicians (PCPs) dwarfs supply, and will do so increasingly into the next decade. Further, the physician deficit comes at a time when primary care is playing a much bigger role in population health management and more people are gaining access to health coverage. Clearly, this presents significant implications for health systems seeking to enhance their primary care networks. So what’s the solution? Here are five strategies systems are employing to circumvent the PCP shortage. Continue reading