• linkedin
  • Increase Font
  • Sharebar

    How to survive in independent practice

    Finding strength in numbers and developing business savvy can help physicians retain their autonomy


    Re-examine fee schedules

    If you are not part of a group that negotiates for you, you may discover that you’re losing money in some ways you may not have reexamined in a while. When Searfoss persuaded the same doctor to review his fee schedules with her, they realized he was actually losing money when he was reimbursed by a particular group that has only 8% market share.

    “Their fee schedule is so low he is paying to see the patient,” she says. “That contract is likely going to go away. If you can’t be reimbursed for seeing the patient, there is no point to have the contract.”

    Consider a buying consortium

    Some doctors gravitate toward giant organizations like the nonprofit Physicians Alliance of America.

    Others, like Kevin J. Kelleher, MD, find that the informal route works just fine.  Kelleher, who has been in private practice for 21 years, runs Executive Healthcare Services, a concierge practice in Reston, Virginia, as well as Generations Family Practice in the same building. Periodically, to reduce overhead, he has pooled money with other practices to make purchases.

    “Over the years we’ve sometimes done that loosely for vaccines and costly hospital supplies,” says Kelleher.

    Still, it’s not easy to constantly keep an eye on the bottom line—and treat patients. After being courted by several IPAs over the last six years, Kelleher is considering joining Privia Health, a physician practice management and population health technology company. 

    But Kelleher is still examining the tradeoffs. While he would remain in charge of his own HR, he would have to operate under Privia’s federal tax ID and dissolve his own business entity. Still, with more hospitals buying up primary care practices in the drive to create the Accountable Care Organizations encouraged under the Affordable Care Act, Kelleher believes independent physicians can benefit from the strengths of joining groups like this. “We’re strongly considering it,” he says.


    You must be signed in to leave a comment. Registering is fast and free!

    All comments must follow the ModernMedicine Network community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated. ModernMedicine reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part,in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

    • Tammy Mocal
      Well Elaine Pofeldt! I am very happy to read about this article "How to survive in independent practice". It is correct statement because I have red plus seen numerous essay site archvie but your contetn consist an attrection for the reader because of that anyone who look at this post recommend for reading once.
    • NimmiD
      This is common problem with all intern practitioner. Need some solution for this. I am looking something good out of this. dental implants india
    • EthanBryan
      It is very difficult to survive in the independent practice because of many reasons. There will not a proper guidance for the doctors and the people who are doing practice didn't learn properly.valet parking luton
      The place to start is the most critical area for a practice — its financial condition and operations. The best way to do this is with good benchmarking data. These data can be secured through many sources, including healthcare associations such as the Medical Group Management Association, suppliers, and networking. By comparing a practice's performance relative to benchmarking data, key areas of weakness can be identified for action. Benchmarking data should reflect the size, geography, specialty, and operating model of a practice, although some metrics can be viewed more universally. contact me for further information: http://www.medpmr.com/

    Latest Tweets Follow