How to Adjust Your Physician Compensation Plan in The Wake of Accountable Care

Money and a StethoscopeEverything in your medical practice is changing, especially when it comes to billing and reimbursement. That means you’ll also need to make some changes in the way you compensate your physicians. Payment metrics are shifting from pure productivity toward customer satisfaction, efficiency, and outcomes. So, how can you– without too much turbulence– make a similar transition in your compensation plan?

“Physicians are your partners, not just your employees.”

1. Engage with your physicians and encourage their leadership.

Payment reform, like healthcare reform, is a tough row to hoe. So, it’s important to manage this change with confidence and unwavering leadership. In the same token, it is critical to remember that physicians have skills and qualifications that should never be taken for granted. You can encourage physicians to offer their input and leadership by rewarding them for such efforts. Also, consider prorating compensation accordingly for admin and directorship duties.

2. Incorporate value-based metrics into compensation contracts

When adjusting physician compensation based on these new measurements, getting the doctors’ input is critical. It’s important that they have some influence or control of what is “quality” to help avoid negativity. Remember that these aren’t exactly welcome changes for them, so consider working patient satisfaction in with existing pay metrics before gradually adding efficiency and outcomes to the mix. Whatever you do, don’t outpace your IT capabilities– if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.

3. Build flexibility into you plan to allow for a gradual transition toward value-based pay.

Right now, we’re between a rock and hard place when it comes to reimbursements. While we’re slowly moving away from fee-for-service, we haven’t quite reached the land of value just yet. In the mean time, processes and productivity are still important. This transition will take time, and you’ll be making small adjustments as you go. You won’t want to renegotiate a new contract each time you adjust your compensation plan, so make life easy for yourself by incorporating gradual change into your contracts.

4. Refocus pay incentives to include team goals

Achievements in quality care and efficiency will require teamwork among physicians, as much as they may hate to admit it. While doctors have long relished their self reliance, the transition to value-based, patient-centered care will absolutely require a team effort. By integrating group-based incentives in your compensation plan, you’ll be promoting a collaborative and efficient team culture.

These are just a few ways you can adjust your compensation plans to account for the changes in health care reimbursements. For more practice management solutions, contact us today to schedule a consultation.

Guide: Accountable Care Organizations

Click here to download our Guide: "How Independent Practices Can Succeed in a Healthcare Industry Shaped by ACO Programs". If you would like more information you can Request a consultation.

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Guide: Accountable Care Organizations

Click here to download our Guide: "How Independent Practices Can Succeed in a Healthcare Industry Shaped by ACO Programs". If you would like more information you can Request a consultation.

Practice Management

  • Anesthesia Billing
  • Full-service medical billing
  • Patient account management
  • Encounter form design
  • Patient balance collections
  • Learn More

MBA In The News

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