• Adam Tabriz, MD

Medical Practice Information Technology Operations

The Top Challenge For Independent Physician Practices In 2022

Initially published by Illumination on Medium!

Photo by Cdn Pages on Unsplash

The increasing administrative burden physicians have been facing for the past decade has created a vacuum of ill afford coping with daily professional tasks. That is mere since, during the last decade, healthcare leaders in the hands of 3rd party payers have doubled down on paying physicians based on their performance instead of the number of services they provide. The last transition to a value-based payment model has prompted many physicians to adopt health information technologies (IT) and practice management solutions. The solutions that influx into the healthcare market vacuum created by the radical transition. Then again, such IT solutions themselves are not flawless.

The Cause Of Administrative Burden For Physicians In 2022 Amid The Value-based Implementation Payment Model

Most physician practice solutions, including Electronic Health Records (EHR) and practice management software, still lack fluidity and user experience, thus contributing to physician burden and burnout when they are meant to do just the opposite.

In fact, according to a report from the American Medical Association (AMA), heightened poor EHR usability and increasing volumes of data entry required by the recent implementation of value-based reimbursement are leading causes of physician burnout.

“Without a doubt, 21st century IT disruptors vows to make medical care more effortless and further efficient has failed physicians by forcing computer screens between them and patients”

Dealing With The Value-based Physician Compensation Model Is A Complex Process.

Value-based reimbursement model is tied to specific data-driven quality metrics. Addressing quality metrics has burdened the physicians when it ought to be a joint and collaborative task. That is why Value-based payment requires comprehensive information technology. That kind of system creates, processes, retrieves, exchanges, and stores all sorts of data and information through technological automation and human multidisciplinary collaboration.

Today's practice management solutions rely predominantly on workflow automation and a centralized repository structure. Hence, such solutions are fragmented and lack enough interoperability, deemphasizing the essence of hands-on support.

According to MGMA Stat Poll, over 31% of medical practices acknowledge the importance of IT operations for clinic management. That surpasses the importance of the utility of technology to improve revenue cycle and Human resources, which places the latter two at 2nd and 3rd place, respectively.

Adopted from: MGMA STAT — MAY 18, 2022

Healthcare leaders have long emphasized the necessity of a skilled and capable healthcare management system. Because without a solid management system, clinic operations and workflows are subject to collapse will strain physicians and staff further, thus producing disgruntled patients, employees, and physicians.

A competent manager's ability to learn the IT system operations and use it to the advantage of the given medical practice is of utmost importance. That comprises an interoperable, transparent, collaborative, and selective automated system.

The current IT system should enhance practice staff collaboration and minimize downtime, ultimately improving revenue stream, patient access, and satisfaction.

Information Technology Operations Are More Than Automation.

Based on the MGMA poll, one can expect to understand the "Revenue cycle," which is essential. Management will flop without understanding the Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) process. In other words, a medical practice manager of IT operations must continually be able to learn, analyze and make necessary changes.

Rules that apply to RCM are also applicable to human resources (HR) and data analytics. For instance, if a manager fails to hire, build trust, treating physicians and treat employees with respect, and does not create a teamwork environment, the medical practice productivity will also fall short.

In every medical practice making, data-driven determinations for practice require converting data into understandable logic, and insight is a must. Information management's capacity to analyze information will help identify subtle yet significant problems. Once again, knowing the right data analytics to review will open the door to executing the proper solution and turn a practice around.

But, simple practice management automation and utility of conventional Electronic Health Records (EHR) will not suffice given the complexity of the modern medical practice commitments associated with value-based payment systems.

One can conclude from what said, such a high expectations from average practice manager alone is burdensome task and costly.True, Practice operations and IT is the top challenge for today's physicians, particularly to those in private practice.

Today's medical practice requires multidisciplinary, hands-on management and a modern IT infrastructure. One that is also affordable to small medical practices making them competitive in today's environment.

Today's system's techniques must help them retain employees and not just recruit them.

Keeping doctors and staff satisfied at work by reducing redundant admin work and engaging them will preclude future problems and thus employee loss and churning.

The solution is a hybrid Cyber-physical-human system. That is an intelligent network comprising humans, cyber systems, and physical sensors to achieve specific operational objectives at an optimal level.

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