Pursuing Real-World Strategies for Practice Transformation at the ACR-RBMA Practice Leaders Forum

ACR17-136Samir B. Patel, MD, FACR, diagnostic radiologist, Radiology, Inc. contributed this post.

I was honored to serve as faculty for the ACR-RBMA Practice Leaders Forum this past weekend. It’s a great opportunity for a diverse group of radiology and business leaders to come together to learn, network and solution-build. As the creator of a value management program in my own practice, I’m a staunch advocate for value-based practices. I also understand that strategy is just one of many building blocks that can help manifest a successful radiology program.

To be an efficient practice leader in the realm of radiology, you must first understand the economic and cultural factors driving change.

The Practice Leaders Forum connected me with fellow colleagues and business experts to collaborate and develop strategic solutions to address the changes coming down the pipeline. Together, we addressed several big-ticket items including the 2020 final Merit-based Incentive Payment System rule (MIPS), recruitment, performance metrics, augmented intelligence (AI), physician well-being, clinical decision support and dealing with adversity.

In one of the first few sessions of the weekend, Drs. Barbara F. Rubel and Nancy Fisher covered the future of MIPS and the Quality Payment Program in 2020. This year, the MIPS payment adjustments are expected to rise alongside the increasingly vigorous requirements. As a result, cost will become a higher percentage of an eligible clinician’s composite performance score, and payment adjustments will be higher for strong performers – yet high scores will be more difficult to achieve. Drs. Rubel and Fisher urged attendees to use these changes as opportunities to work directly with facilities to manage patient costs.

In my breakout session, co-facilitated with Sheila S. Witous, MBA, CPA, CGMA, we discussed desirable attributes of performance measures. Participants then worked in small groups to come up with one value metric and one business metric which are not used as performance measures currently but would be of value. The discussion among the participants was rich and energetic with several wonderful ideas generated.

As my co-faculty Frank J. Lexa, MD, MBA noted, “Teams are a key factor for success (or failure) in radiology.” It’s important that as we lead, we also reserve time for reflection: on what’s working and what’s not, who will help achieve the desired results, and if we have the expertise and resources we need to make it happen. All the while being the first to recognize burnout in our groups and intervene.

If you’re a radiology leader looking to optimize your practice performance, I encourage you to equip yourself with management strategies tailored especially for the radiology environment. Take advantage of radiology-specific resources available through the Practice Leaders Forum, and take the next step in ensuring success in your practice.

  • Interested in attending the 2021 ACR-RBMA Practice Leaders Forum? Registration is now open.

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