It is no secret that running a medical practice can be challenging. However today, with all the changes in healthcare, managing a medical practice has become more challenging than ever. If you are lucky, you have found a wonderful practice administrator who is able to take the day to day operating tasks off of your plate. But even if this is the case, you may find yourself with questions such as, “Are we running the practice efficiently?”, “Are we collecting reimbursements in a timely manner?”, and “Are we compliant with all the new rules and regulations?”.
Benefits of a Third Party Practice Management Consultant:If you find yourself questioning the operation of your medical practice, hiring a third party practice management consultant is the way to go. Below you will find 5 of many reasons to work with a practice management consultant.
- Gain exposure to industry best practices
- Receive unbiased evaluations
- Have the practice evaluated with a fresh set of eyes
- Utilization of outside knowledge
- Leveraging past solutions to similar issues
Selecting a Third Party Practice Management Consultant:When deciding on a practice management consulting company, keep these 5 important points in mind.
- Availability: When selecting a practice management consultant, availability is important. As a medical professional, your days are filled with treating patients and tasks surrounding your patients. Finding the time to set aside to meet with practice management consultants can be difficult to come by. That is why it is important to select a company who values your time. They stick to appointment times, arrive promptly, and finish on schedule. They must have the available time to commit to your practice and be willing to put in the hours necessary to identify the problems of your practice and recommend solutions.
- Market Knowledge:Selecting a practice management consultant with vast market knowledge is important for two main reasons. First, they are able to identify potential shortcomings of your practice (the reason you hired them in the first place). Secondly, they will be able to pass on their knowledge to you and your staff. Often times medical staff does not have the market knowledge or the time to commit to identifying internal inefficiencies, which is where a knowledgeable third party consultant comes in handy.
- Methodology:One question to ask when interviewing potential practice management consultants is how they would invision solving the issues of your practice at first glance. Identifying a problem is one thing, but having the correct methodology for approaching potential problems and making recommendations is extremely important. If you don’t agree with the methods of the consultant, you may need to consider looking elsewhere.
- Flexibility and Adaptability: Being part of the healthcare industry you have come to learn that things change, such as regulations you are required to comply with. Determining how a practice management consultant is equipped to deal with these changes is important. The best way to determine this is to ask questions such as, “how have you solved problems in the past and how have you adapted when the problems or regulations surrounding the problem changed?”
- Expertise and Experience: It goes without saying that you want an expert who is experienced in identifying and solving potential problems. For this reason, it is important to hire a practice management consultant who is focused solely on the healthcare industry and has a proven track record of success working with other practices. Asking for and following up with references is a great way to gain insight into a potential third party practice consultant.