3 Ways To Engage Your Physicians In Cost Savings

by | Oct 3, 2019 | Cost Savings, VIE Healthcare Blogs

This article was written by Lisa Miller.

Physician engagement is becoming increasingly important for the success of every healthcare organization in the shift towards value based care.

In this blog, I outline 3 ways to engage your physicians in cost savings initiatives, which can help to create a high performance hospital and deliver exceptional patient care.

What is physician engagement?

Physician engagement is a strategy focused on creating strong relationships between your health system and your physicians to ensure a mutual understanding of and commitment to your hospital’s values and long-term vision.

The benefits of physician engagement

When your physicians are highly engaged, your hospital and patients benefit in numerous ways. For example:

• Higher levels of efficiency and increased retention levels among your physicians.
• Improvement in the quality of patient care and enhanced patient satisfaction.
• An increase in patient referrals (notably a 3% rise in outpatient referrals and 51% more inpatient referrals according to Gallup’s Physician Engagement survey).
• One hospital reported an increase of 26% productivity when its physicians were engaged, leading to significantly higher revenue.
• Improved financial performance and increased cost savings for your hospital.

It is in the area of cost savings that I want to highlight three key ways to increase your physician’s engagement and the benefits that can be gained:

#1 Build cost awareness

By providing front line care, physicians are influential in the majority of decisions relating to quality and costs. In working with our clients at VIE Healthcare Consulting, I know that physicians are motivated to deliver the highest value care to their patients, together with quality clinical outcomes.

The challenge is, however, that in many cases, physicians are simply unaware of the costs of supplies and implants used in their cases – but they are eager to gain insight into those costs.

For example, one study found that when pricing labels are placed on items in the OR, physicians become more price aware and cost savings can be made. Awareness around implant pricing is often limited and implant selection may be prioritized based on familiarity. In this case, the simple strategy of listing prices alongside the implant list can lead to potentially significant cost savings. These cost savings are achieved without a negative impact on patient care or clinical outcomes.

The simple act of listing prices alongside implant items in the OR can lead to significant cost savings for your hospital. Click To Tweet

#2 Collaborate more closely

Obtaining cost data has often proved to be difficult for physicians but closer collaboration helps to resolve this issue. Both physicians and hospital leaders regard each other as vital to achieving lower cost healthcare while maintaining and enhancing patient satisfaction.

Successful collaboration requires an informed decision making process incorporating product cost details and clinical outcomes to ensure physician engagement.

#3 Utilize data analysis

Physicians both respect and respond to evidence based research and enjoy a reputation for embracing innovation. Data analytics can deliver significant cost savings across your hospital. Physicians also endorse data analytics for improved efficiency.

At VIE Healthcare, we provide a Cost Playbook to our clients, together with a comprehensive price comparison analysis to aid in product selection.

Our front line expertise enables us to implement proven strategies which deliver significant margin improvement. The Physician Cost Awareness Program from VIE Healthcare engages physicians in cost reduction strategies, enhances the physician-hospital relationship and is vital to maintaining a high performance organization.

Our program is customized to meet the specific needs and requirements of each individual healthcare facility, empowering your surgeons to make decisions based on both clinical and financial value.

Using clear, reliable data analysis, VIE Healthcare identifies cost savings and provides proven solutions to achieve and preserve those savings.

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