Welcome to Practice Rounds, our weekly column exploring what's being covered in the larger world of healthcare
Study: Non-Academic Physicians Earn More
New research from the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) showed a sizeable pay difference between non-academic physicians and their academic peers.
The 2017 MGMA DataDive Physician Compensation and Production Survey found primary-care physicians in non-academic settings earn $57,129 more than those in academic settings. The largest difference was in specialty care where a non-academic physician makes $122,795 more than an academic physician.
Average salaries were not the only difference. Authors of study also found starting salaries differ across the board. According to the survey, first year physicians at non-academic institutions earned more than those who entered academic institutions. For example, the difference in primary care was upwards of $86,000.
Health Care Facility Power Systems Unequipped for Digital Age
A survey done by Schneider Electric of 150 health care executives and facility managers found that healthcare organizations are missing out on opportunities to reduce energy use and costs, avoid outages, and improve patient satisfaction due to their power distribution and management systems not being equipped to take advantage of the Internet of things (IoT).
Furthermore, 36 percent of respondents said their power distribution systems were more than five years old, with cost reduction (23 percent), safety (22 percent), and power availability (20 percent) among the top concerns. The survey also found that more than half (51 percent) of respondents plan to invest power distribution and management in the next 12 months.
Physicians Need Patient Request Training
A new study from UC Davis Health found patients who ask and are denied specialist referrals or medications are less satisfied with their doctors, bringing into question how physicians are trained to handle such requests.
It is common for doctors to receive requests from patients, but not all of the requests are medically viable. Some requests are for services of little value that could potentially have a detrimental effect on the patient. Properly addressing these requests is where further training is needed, researchers say.
The study gathered responses from more than 1,100 patients and found the patients asked nearly 1,700 specific requests to their physicians. Those requests were fulfilled 85 percent of the time, leading to high satisfaction rates among patients. But when requests for medications or referral visits were denied, patient satisfaction scores dropped 10 to 20 percentage points.
The authors found the issue concerning especially in the era of patient satisfaction-driven compensation for physicians. The findings suggest the need to train clinicians to deal effectively with requests, potentially enhancing patient and clinician experiences, according to the study.
Quote of the Week
"MIPS is like a treadmill, it just keeps getting faster and faster. For 2017 and [in] 2018, it gets a little faster, come 2019 the speed is going to jump way up. If you're not already up and running and in decent shape, you're going to spit right off the back end of the treadmill."
Matt Fusan from SA Ignite on the importance of understanding MIPS.