Medical practices seek effective ways to prepare for the arrival of new patients receiving healthcare coverage through the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) new Health Insurance Marketplaces and expanded Medicaid programs. Non-physician providers (NPPs), including nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, physician assistants, and physical therapists can provide much-needed support in this new healthcare era. However, for NPPs to work, physician practices need to track performance by identifying quantitative and qualitative practice goals and measuring progress toward them.
The Non-Physician Providers Benchmarking Yardstick
In a typical medical practice, NPP performance benchmarking falls into five categories:
1. Day-to-day practice. Does the NPP meet deadlines? Is the NPP up-to-date and accurate with charting and dictation? Do team members promptly complete billing forms? Does the NPP prepare effective referral letters and other correspondence?
2. Practice development.How well does the NPP attract new patients and retaining existing ones? Is the NPP a source of ideas for practice improvements and willing to assist with administrative matters?
3. Practice style.Does the NPP work efficiently and sensitively regarding the cost of resources utilized? Does the NPP demonstrate enthusiasm and flexibility during the daily work routine?
4. Clinical performance.The NPP must not only have appropriate knowledge, but also maintain it through continuing education. Can the NPP ensure patient compliance with directives and coordinate care?
5. Interpersonal skills.Does the NPP interact well with patients, clinical staff, management, referral sources, vendors, and suppliers?
Among all members of the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA), there is an average of 0.31 NPPs for each full-time physician, with NPP costs totaling 4.05% of practice revenue and total provider (NPP and physician) costs combining for 41.75% of practice revenue.
Contact CRI’s Healthcare CPAs for Good Measure
CRI’s healthcare CPAs can assist your practice in the benchmarking process and in identifying the more meaningful performance indicators for your medical practice.