Is Your Medical Practice Ready for Value-Based Payments?

Right now, CMS’s value-based payments program is a murky stew of acronyms and deadlines. Here’s what it boils down to: CMS is moving away from fee-for-service payment models and toward pay-for-performance models To do that, it’s aligning the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) with a value-based payment modifier (VBPM) For now, VBPM applies to groups of 10 or more eligible professionals (EPs). However, by 2017, the VBPM will apply to all physicians Clearly, physicians who have not paid much attention...

EHRs: Shorten the Time to Positive ROI in Your Medical Practice

In a study of 17 primary-care clinics, Canadian researchers found that providers were able to achieve positive ROI on their EHR investment within 10 months, on average. The main reason was an increase in the number of patients each clinician could see after the EHR implementation—a 27% increase in the active-patients-to-clinician ratio. Of course, provider experiences with EHRs vary greatly. Both the US and Canada have seen incredible successes and spectacular failures, with some practices going so far as to...

Living Versus Irrevocable Trusts: What Docs Should Know

Trusts can be among the most significant components of a physician’s financial and estate planning, but not everyone understands them or how they can affect a medical practice. A revocable living trust is a set of assets that you can add to or take away from while you are alive. Living trusts have several important distinctions compared to irrevocable trusts. All trusts involve two main parties: the trustee (or trustees) and the trust beneficiaries. Trustees have the authority to use...

Physicians and Stolen Tax Returns: Avoiding Medical Practice Fraud

Physicians are not normally the segment of the population that comes to mind when one thinks of filing fraudulent tax returns. During this year’s tax season that culminates on October 15, 2014 for those who filed for extensions for turning in their tax returns, some physicians in Texas are realizing that they are in the midst of a scheme. Filers of bogus tax returns aim to defraud the federal government out of millions of dollars. Since June, physicians in Texas...

Boost Medical Practice Revenue with Technology and Human Resources

We understand the challenges facing private providers – shrinking reimbursement rates, increasing compliance mandates and an influx of newly insured patients, some who haven’t seen a physician in years. Naturally, these challenges have some practice managers struggling to find ways to boost revenue, or at least slow down the declining profit margin. Professional practice consultants, like Rosemarie Nelson (Medical Group Management Health Care Consulting Group), encourage clinicians to invest time and effort scrutinizing their processes and technology to find ways...

Selling Your Medical Practice? Do These Things…

Legal experts advice physicians to start preparing for the sale of their practice several years in advance. Careful planning ensures accurate valuations so that physicians are not compelled to sell their practice during unfavorable market trends. Retaining a team of professional appraisers, accountants and attorneys who specialize in medical practice transactions is also advisable. Entities that commonly express interest in purchasing a practice include other physicians, larger group practices wanting to expand and hospitals. As you prepare to sell your...

Stressed Docs – Manage Work-Life Balance in Your Medical Practice

Physicians work more than most people realize. In fact, the time they spend helping others through their medical practice often leads to serious imbalances in their own lives. While it may be impossible to fully alleviate this difficulty, there are some steps that physicians can take to bring more equilibrium to both their jobs and their personal time. 7 Ways Physicians Can Improve Work-Life Balance Learn to delegate – Although it is tempting to do everything oneself, there is only...

Is Your Medical Practice At Risk for Cyberthreats?

Unfortunately, medical practices cannot be fully guaranteed for protection against cyberthreats by even the most cutting-edge computer software. However, specific plans and actions can be implemented that significantly contribute to preventing cyberattacks from compromising sensitive medical data and patient information. In fact, many of these anti-cyberthreat actions are required by HIPAA’s risk assessment policy that focuses on the following: Completing extensive background checks on office personnel who regularly access confidential data. Consistently maintaining a vigilant attitude towards the status of...

Medical Practice Tips: Don’t Get Sued for Inappropriate Emails

Advances in technology have made it possible to communicate with patients via electronic devices, but that does not mean it is always a smart decision. Physicians should always be aware of the potential pitfalls and downsides associated with electronic communication solutions. Accidental Breach of Privacy As a physician, you are responsible to maintain doctor-patient confidentiality and protect the personal information of every patient. A downside associated with electronic communication, particularly on mobile devices, is the risk of accidentally giving away...

5 Medical Practice Staff Retention Strategies That Work

A shockingly high number of US businesses don’t have a formal strategy for employee retention. Considering the time and money it takes to successfully educate the folks who work in your medical practice, if you haven’t considered retention, you’re not thinking clearly. Here are five no-nonsense strategies to help you keep the valuable employees you so carefully hired and trained. Hire right. Retention starts with the interview process. Get to know the top candidates as well as you possibly can,...

Powerful Tips to Speed Up Claims in Your Practice

Even if your current claims process brings in a steady stream of reimbursements, it might surprise you to learn that hidden fees and inefficient protocol unnecessarily cost you thousands of dollars each month. It is impossible to push every medical claim through without a few slipping into the dreaded “pending status,” but there are steps your practice can take to avoid processing delays and costs associated with denials and appeals. Controlling Costs Medical claims processing grows increasingly more complex, more...