As the healthcare industry shifts toward value-based reimbursements, it’s no secret that hospitals are finding the transition difficult. As an anesthesiologist, you’ve probably seen your hospital struggling to balance improving efficiency and outcomes while lowering costs.
To meet these demands, some hospitals have adopted the strategy of integrating surgery with other hospital-based specialties. This, of course, includes anesthesiologists. The improved communication and newly fostered collaboration between specialists—while not without its challenges—can be a gateway to more efficient, higher quality care.
But many anesthesiologists are essentially “lone wolves” within their hospitals. Unlike other specialties, they operate without offices, without staff, and often don’t even meet their own patients. So, the idea of working closely with hospital management to improve cost-effectiveness may seem like an unnatural fit.
As a hospital-based physician, your fate is tied directly to the success of your facilities. You are in a unique position to improve not only surgical services but the entire spectrum of acute care. And while working closely with hospital leadership may feel foreign, it provides a tremendous opportunity by giving you the chance for deeper input during contract negotiations.
With the right information at your fingertips, you can help hospital leadership improve their metrics, and renegotiate your contract to get the best possible deal.
When Negotiating Your Contract, Knowledge Is Power
When talking about contract negotiations, think of yourself as a movie star. You are the talent, and a company like Fusion Anesthesia is your agent.
With all due respect to Entourage’s Ari Gold, a good agent doesn’t rush into a meeting and say, “my client’s the best and you’re an idiot if you don’t hire him.” Rather, a good agent brings reams of data, and says something like, “My client’s last three movies grossed $100 million each. Here’s what other actors in that category are making. And here’s how you can improve the shooting schedule to save three days in production so that you can better afford my client’s fee.”
In the same vein, Fusion Anesthesia’s practice management software gives you immensely powerful, data-driven tools so you can help your hospital improve patient care, lower costs and negotiate a favorable anesthesiology contract—all at the same time.
Our practice management software gives you powerful data that can help your hospital improve operations and help you negotiate a favorable contract.
One tool, called the room utilization graph, offers an overview of which anesthesiologists and CRNAs were assigned to each OR, how many cases were completed that day, and total anesthesia times. Fusion’s anesthesia practice management software can analyze this data to tune up staffing models, ensuring anesthesiologists aren’t being assigned to empty rooms.
This is the kind of information that’s invaluable during contract negotiations. First, most hospitals don’t have data on room utilization, including anesthesia times or the staff involved. So, by arming yourself with this data, you already have the upper hand. Second, this information is mutually beneficial: it allows you to be assigned to more cases that pay, and it allows hospital to boost efficiency by eliminating unnecessary staffing.
A Wealth of Tools at Your Fingertips
Fusion Anesthesia offers a variety of practice management services that provide a complete overview of your practice’s health. What’s more, our concierge service eliminates the need for back-office staff or multiple support providers.
Our anesthesia practice management consulting services include:
Insurance contract negotiation
Fusion Anesthesia understands anesthesiology contracts better than the insurance companies do. By letting us represent your practice, you’ll greatly improve the information odds when negotiating with the insurance companies.
What’s more, we serve 400 anesthesiologists across the country, so we thoroughly understand your local competitive landscape as well. The bottom line is that Fusion Anesthesia can help you negotiate a better contract than you’d likely be able to negotiate on your own.
Hospital contract negotiation
Just like negotiating with insurance companies, anesthesiologists often feel overwhelmed when the CFO of the local hospital starts spitting statistics at them that seem to justify whatever concession they are looking for. Fusion Anesthesia brings statistics of our own to support your claims. The best news is that much of this data isn’t adversarial. By helping the hospital improve efficiency, you’re opening up the door to more money for you and your partners while maintaining quality patient care standards.
Fusion Anesthesia can combine historical data, future projections, and industry averages to propose an equitable stipend formulary that adequately compensates you and your group for facility-imposed requirements like staffing requirements that routinely leave you underutilized (and underpaid) and/or changes in the patient mix that results in more indigent or other low-paying patients.
This usually involves some complex math and lots of tedious data modeling. But you can’t get the hospital to compensate you for lost income if you can’t show the numbers. We bring the numbers. Lots of ‘em.
Scheduling & efficiency analysis
We model how to keep all the MD’s in your group running on optimized schedules, use CRNA’s to ‘flex’ the coverage where possible, and provide full coverage at all times. The result is an idealized schedule that meets your needs while maximizing efficiency.
Keeping up with credentialing can feel like a full-time job. The mountain of paperwork, deadlines, and minor fees to prove to the world that you can (still) do your job can be a major hassle. Various state and federal agencies, certain facilities, and payers are just some of the organizations who require updates and proof that you’re still a physician in good standing.
We take care of all it for you, including tracking requirements, deadlines, and caseloads and handling all the correspondence and forms.
Anesthesia Practice Management: Let Us Help You
As a hospital-based physician, you have a unique perspective on surgical processes. While the healthcare landscape continues to change, and hospitals work furiously to lower costs without sacrificing patient care, anesthesiologists are presented with a unique opportunity to share their knowledge with hospital leadership.
They key is having the best information possible, and Fusion Anesthesia’s practice management team provides you with in-depth data that even your hospital’s CFO doesn’t possess. By stepping up to the plate, you can negotiate your next contract so that your financial needs are met, and the hospital improves their metrics as well. A good deal leaves everybody happy.
Interested in learning more about what practice management services we offer and how we can help you better negotiate your contract? Contact us.