Health care organizations pay physicians for a variety of duties that are not patient care based, but are more administrative or perhaps task based activities that are for the benefit of the company, not necessarily the physician. These activities are not defined as productive time, meaning the physician cannot bill insurance companies or a patient for this time. It is work being performed on behalf of another organization, not a patient. Over time, health care organizations such as hospitals, device companies, large physician groups, pharmaceutical companies have had to pay physicians a fair hourly rate for all the hours asked of physicians.
Topics: physician contracts
So your organization has a contract management system, meaning your physician contracts are covered right? WRONG.
Contract management systems do a great job of managing the development of new physician contracts, executive approval, and any redline changes that are made on the various versions. Once signed, the contract management system is not the best place to manage the activity on these contracts. The day-to-day management falls to the operational and financial side of the house.
Topics: Physician Time Logging
Medical directorships are necessary for the effective management of patient care. However, medical directorship payments can cause headaches for hospital administrators.
Duties are most often outlined in the agreements, however because they are so complex, they become impossible to manage over time. Many agreements include duties that are paid at different rates depending on holiday, weekend or weekday hours. Some duties can be paid quarterly, while others are paid monthly. One agreement with a series of payment amounts and payment timeframes can be detrimental to making accurate payments.
We know as a leader in your hospital organization that you’ve got a number of priorities and likely a number of reasons to toss and turn through the night. We also know that physician administrative agreements are an intricate part of your strategy to align with physicians and are probably a much more complicated and time-intensive process to manage than they should be. We've gathered a couple of the reasons that may be keeping you up at night when it comes to your physician contracts and offered solutions so you can finally get some shut eye.
Physician administrative agreements are such a critical part of hospital strategy. The challenge with these agreements is they live in a variety of departments where each department manages them differently which can be cause for manual process and leave large opportunity for error. With automation comes concrete process across all silos of physician contracts as well as ownership of the problem.
The regulatory environment dictates that hospitals who contract with physicians meet specific conditions in order for the contract to be legal. The conditions are meant to ensure the physician payment is not based on volume or value of business because it can lead to overusing services and increasing overall costs of care. Technically violating your own contracts can lead to multi-million dollar settlements.
If you’re working with physicians in hopes of continuing to build good relationships with them, you are well aware of the intricacies that come with managing their administrative agreements…after all getting your docs paid on time will certainly help alleviate any relationship woes. Even though you may already be housing these agreements in a digital solution and capturing time logs whether on paper or via excel files, there probable is more you can be doing to help yourself and your relationships with your physicians.
Our hospital clients have let us know that the handling of physician administrative contracts is a “hot potato” within their administrative team. Nobody seems to want to fully own the issues that come along with these complicated contracts; everyone seems to own a piece of physician administrative contracts such as compliance, medical staff offices, hospital administration, legal teams and the finance department.
Administrative physician agreements have been written for your physicians with help from your legal department or counsel. The clauses are there to be followed for numerous reasons. Perhaps it is to meet your organization’s goals with the way you align with doctors as well as for a variety of compliance reasons. Whatever the reason, it’s important to handle your physician agreements in the way they’re written, even if they’re complex. Failure to do so leaves room for incredible consequences that can affect your organization in a variety of ways.
Hospitals pay a plethora of physicians in a variety of ways. Some are employed. Some manage the clinical components of service lines in tandem with hospital leadership in co-management arrangements. Some are service line leaders. Some provide on-call coverage for the hospital. Some teach residents or interns at the hospital.