Let us say I need to make a trip to Nashville, which is about 400 miles round trip. I can take my car, a vehicle I purchased and maintain, or I can take a flight in which case I outsource all the responsibility and indirect costs to an airline. If I take my car, I simply fill the tank with gas for about $40. If I take the flight, my ticket costs $350. Seems like a no-brainer, right? The flight seems to cost more, but the sophisticated reader will immediately recognize this is an apples-to-oranges comparison.
“Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun,”– Mao Zedong, 1927
On my first day as a “cow” (or junior) at United States Military Academy at West Point, I learned a lesson that has stayed with me my entire life and contributes to the lens through which I consider all business issues. During my time at West Point, all cadets were required to take SS307, “Introduction to International Relations.” As I was a pre-med math/science guy, I walked into the first day of this class having no idea what we would be learning, much less expecting to learn anything that would become part of my intellectual bedrock. I was dead wrong in the first 15 minutes of that class.
I remember repeatedly memorizing the Krebs cycle in both college and medical school, and hating it intensely. I did not know much, but I knew I was not interested in any job where knowledge of the Krebs cycle was important, and so I never seriously “learned” it. I would simply “spec and dump” it for the test, which ensured that within 24 hours I could only vaguely remember Krebs had something to do with ATP and acetyl-CoA — and that was always good enough to get me to the next level of training. Not all cycles are so worthless for a surgeon to understand, though. The revenue cycle is equally as complicated as the Krebs cycle, but is enormously useful to understand when running a practice.
In last month’s blog, we defined the equation: Opportunity = Delivery + Neglect, where “opportunity” is the total daily orthopedic value created in our local markets, “delivery” is the total daily orthopedic value delivered — what we do; take care of patients — in our local markets and “neglect” is the total daily orthopedic value left untreated in our local markets.
Webinar: Does your office’s appointment process optimize your opportunities with patients you’ve determined to be valuable to you?
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In our education and training as orthopedic surgeons, we spent years learning a vitally important technical language, without which we could not exchange ideas and accumulate knowledge. Amongst ourselves, we may use a term like “varus derotational osteotomy” to easily communicate a complex biomechanical principle, but non-orthopedists would have little idea about what we were discussing. Without our technical language, we could not be successful as orthopedists. It is therefore easy to understand the value of language to any complex occupation.
In bid to help MD practices generate more revenue, nextDoc Solutions IDs high value patients. Read more about it in the MedCity News article: http://medcitynews.com/2016/12/nextdoc-solutions-ids-high-value-patients/
I refer to appointment procrastination as “flash-to-bang” time. During the Cold War, American soldiers were taught to count the number of seconds between the “flash” of a nuclear explosion and the impact of the pressure wave (“bang”). The time difference between the arrival of each of those two events could be reported to higher authorities (assuming the observer survived) to calculate where the bomb hit.
Learn how a similar idea impacts your practice’s ability to attract patients: Healio: The Business Minded Surgeon Blog
In conversations with our clients and groups interested in value-based physician scheduling, we tend to spend the majority of time speaking about the benefits to the practice. It’s true that physician practices have many headaches in scheduling patients efficiently and intelligently. But, often overlooked is the tremendous headache that patients face when scheduling an appointment. An outdated telephone queue does nothing to show a patient that your practice values their business. This is a nice blog piece that highlights an experience a patient had using the nextDoc app and why the patient experience can’t be overlooked when changing the appointment process. Patients are who we all serve!
In a blog writing that I did on Healio.com, I explain why it’s not only logical, but also necessary to the survival of physician specialists to carefully consider how their time is allocated as part of their business practice. We see this approach in almost every industry outside of medicine. But, I’d argue it is critical to our success in our chosen field of medicine.
Read Here: Healio: The Business Minded Surgeon Blog