Mergers & Acquisitions

Physician Success Requires More Than Focus on Patient Care


Beginning in 2012, Medicare’s Value Based Purchasing program will  provide financial incentives based on the performance of quality measures. Patient satisfaction surveys will yield significant weight in measuring performance.

Many physician groups will make the mistake of focusing even more intently on patient care and on patient satisfaction.

Taken alone, focusing on increasing both the level of care and, significantly, the level of patient satisfaction, are important goals.  But in a very real way, they are simply an intensification of the “in your practice,” as opposed to “on your practice” focus that is damaging to your group’s overall success.

I can hear the complaints, so let me be clear:  Focusing even more so on patient care, to the detriment of other areas of your practice that also require devotion of quality “care,” is too much of a good thing.  Red wine, in moderation, a glass or two, has health benefits; drinking a few bottles instead of eating dinner is not a good idea.

The naturalist John Muir said that when we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.

The same is true in respect of your group’s success.  Just as it’s tied to patient care and patient satisfaction, it’s also tied to the organizational structure of your group, the agreements among the owner-physicians and between the group and non-owner physicians, and between the group and referring physicians, hospital administrator and others.

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