Four Steps to Increase Productivity at your Medical Office

We all want our medical offices to run as efficiently and smoothly as possible. Unfortunately, there are some days that fall short from the very beginning and eventually fall apart completely. These are the days that even heavy doses of caffeine and the most motivating of Muzak can’t fix. Managing your medical office efficiently maximizes productivity creates more profitability. When your practice is truly productive, you can see fewer patients while retaining a strong bottom line. Luckily, if you feel your practice isn’t running effectively, there are some simple steps you can take to get things back on track. By adding a few strategies and daily habits, you can reduce the stresses created by unproductive office.

Welcome new technology.

Technology is one of the greatest tools of an efficient medical practice. It can eliminate errors, improve patient access and save time. Technology now systematizes many time consuming tasks such as appointment reminders, newsletters, follow up care and more. However, for this to work effectively, it is critical that everyone is fully trained and mentally on board. If not used to its full advantage, technology can actually hinder productivity and slow things down.

Use an online scheduling tool.

Speaking of technology, now is the time to look into an online scheduling tool. It takes about 10 minutes to schedule appointments. That time adds up quickly and most offices spend way too much valuable time scheduling appointments. Utilizing an online digital scheduling tool, where patients can schedule their own appointments, will help cut back significantly on wasted time scheduling and rescheduling appointments. Use your automated newsletters as well as in-office communication to educate patients about the option to book online.

Investigate your process.

Look into your processes and choose just one you would like to streamline. You will be more motivated to attack a problem area if you apply your focus to one small portion or practice technique and go from there. Looking at your all issues and trying to attack something major will leaving you feeling overwhelmed and in the end you may accomplish nothing at all.

Plan ahead.

Knowing what’s coming is key to office productivity. Look ahead at your schedule and figure out what patient information will need to be gathered and what holes need to be filled before the day has really begun. This is critical to maintaining the highest level of practice efficiency and profitability. At the end of your day, take a little bit of time to review what tomorrow holds. Evaluate and rank procedures and communications by priority. You can then determine and designate deadlines and assigns beforehand, which helps you and your staff. Follow your list and try to not get distracted by less important work.

Running your practice in an efficient way will lead to increased office morale and higher profitability. Set the expectation of efficiency with all team members by having an established routine. This will allow everyone to benefit from a less stressful, but highly productive environment. With a more structured and organized work environment a cycle of productivity will follow, creating an office with a happy staff and satisfied patients.

We hope these tips help you run a more effective, productive and economical rheumatology practice. For more helpful tips, follow our blog and “like us” on Facebook!

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
  • Thanks to all those wonderful people in the NORM Network who respond to emails, offering their advice, experience, time, and support ... I haven't even been a member a full year yet and I am amazed at the dedication of everyone who responds to helping via emails and the NORM Organization itself! I have barely had a chance to explore the resources and I have yet to really dive into requests for help still I am silently learning so much and do occasionally offer what I can! Thank you all!- Cheryl Piambino, Kenneth E. Bresky, DO

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