MGMA Shows Keys to Business Success in Medical Groups

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A new report identifies best practices in several areas, including accounts receivable, revenue, expenses, and patient access.

new report from MGMA It highlights the best practices of successful medical groups.

MGMA assigns Better Performer status based on metrics such as rewards and production, costs and revenues, and operations performed. The new report is based on information gathered from 4,098 organizations and identified 1,129 organizations as better performers. This is a 36% increase compared to organizations certified as Better Performers in 2021.

According to the report, Better Performers excel in accounts receivable. “Overall, the Better Performer practice collects more A/Rs in the first 30 days compared to the All practice. It’s happening in the primary care collections that were made, better performers in primary care are also the biggest difference in outstanding A/R in the 120+ day bucket.”

Michelle Mattingly, MGMA’s director of data solutions, tells HealthLeaders that Better Performers who excel in accounts receivable management have three main things in common.

  • Focus on collecting receivables in the first 30 days of billing and reduce the amount collected in overdue buckets, such as receivables over 120 days.
  • Find clerical and coding errors with invoice scrubbing tools
  • Run monthly receivables and separate insurance and patient balances by service date

According to Mattingly, the better performers who achieved higher returns had three main things in common.

  • Better performers often have slightly higher total operating costs per dedicated physician.
  • Investments in areas such as staff, medical supplies, building occupancy, and equipment typically help generate greater returns in Better Performer organizations.
  • Better performers live by the adage that money must be spent to make money.

Due to pandemic-related constraints such as increased labor costs, Better Performers reported lower costs compared to their peers. According to Mattingly, he attributed Better Performers’ cost savings primarily to two factors.

  • In some cases, job cuts helped avoid a sharp rise in labor costs
  • Clinics experiencing understaffing have no staff to pay, saving costs that otherwise would have been necessary

Staffing shortages have strained access to patients, including long wait times for appointments. According to Mattingly, Better his performers who have been able to maintain lines or improve patient access had four main things in common with him.

  • Better performers had a higher percentage of same-day bookings
  • Next 3 appointments for new patients were up to 4 days earlier at Better Performers compared to other clinics
  • New patients were asked to complete an electronic form prior to their visit
  • Better Performers hired part-time remote staff

RELATED: MGMA Highlights Keys to Physician Practice Success

Christopher Cheney is Senior Clinical Care Editor for HealthLeaders.