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Build a Successful Practice

Posted on by Lancet

Staff Report

Practices run the gamut from struggling to produce acceptable revenues to succeeding beyond expectations. The successful practices appear to attract new patients, add new providers, and have greater revenues than their peers because these practices understand the fact that a medical practice is a business and act accordingly. Management needs a basic understanding of business operations and has the ability to change as circumstances warrant. Following is a list of some of the qualities that practices need to have to be successful.

Look for Opportunities and Have a Plan
Successful partners do not leave growth to chance. They have the ability to analyze their resources and the competition so they can find opportunities for growth. They look for opportunities that provide important services to communities that can drive practice growth; they plan for long-term growth and provide immediate and near-future plans that advance those long-term plans. Sometimes a simple change of facilities and advertising in local publications will lead to new patients. It may be necessary to form a multi-specialty practice to offer specialties that better handle community needs that are not yet being met efficiently.

Know How to be Visible
Use a TV monitor in the reception area that reports on the services that the practice offers. Maybe add extended hours or weekend hours to accommodate working patients. Advertise to social and professional networks for new patients. Effective advertising should communicate the practice’s unique services.

Keep Patients Happy
The most successful tactic of all is to keep patients happy. Word-of-mouth has always been the best marketing tool. Quality care is the goal of every staff member from the front desk to the physicians. Such goals are emphasized from hiring through every-day activities.

Reliable Data
Use data, not guesswork. Know when patients need specific testing done. Know the time it takes to be paid for specific procedures and their volume. Success requires the right data at the right time to make correct medical decisions. Integrated electronic health records and practice management systems can help organize your data and alerts.

Strong Leadership
Managing physicians set the direction for the rest of the staff. Hire the right people who can handle day-to-day needs so providers can focus on overall goals and clinical issues.

The team
must successfully interact to accomplish the overall business goals. Successful managing physicians spend at least 90% of their time with patients with the remainder spent tracking business goals and efficiencies.

Time Management
The most successful practices efficiently manage doctor-patient time. Productivity benefits everyone, including patients. Set up reasonable and consistent policies. Thus, basic business practices consistently applied to everyone will form the basis for a successful practice.