Hospitals Find Their Role Diminished

Philip Betbeze, for HealthLeaders Media , October 18, 2013

However, successfully integrating such pieces of the continuum doesn't stop at acquisition, of course. Many who began their careers in hospitals and stayed there have little experience in managing these other lines of business. That adds to the fear that the capital required to re-engineer the business model may yet still be squandered.

First among CEOs' concerns has to be the fact that healthcare leaders need new faces, new skill sets, and new ideas on the system's leadership team. Managing a physician practice or outpatient surgery center requires a basket of skills and experience that most hospitals and health systems don't have.

Sometimes they make the mistake of pretending that such entities can be managed by those who grew up in hospitals. Usually, this is not the case, even if the misalignment comes more from a political and cultural place than in actual aptitude.

So CEOs are hiring executives from health plans to help manage risk. They're hiring physician executives to help re-engineer care, and they're employing a cast of people who can help patients manage through care transitions. That's effectively what all these experimental risk-based payment systems have been asking them to do.

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3 comments on "Hospitals Find Their Role Diminished"

David Hold (10/23/2013 at 3:07 PM)
I agree that may be a solution another solution is for hospital administrators to learn basic principal of finance and instead of focusing what can I bill for it focus on the bottom line and realize that you just being able to bill for it does not guarantee profitability. Savings and eliminating waste can have the same effect on bottom line

bob sigmond (10/18/2013 at 3:41 PM)
Your "traditional hospital" is almost all gone. Today, hospital income from in-patient care in almost all the hospitals with which I am familiar makes up less than half of the total. The majority comes from ambulatory and related services. Check it out. Also, today, hospitals have the opportunity to entirely eliminate being paid from fees-for-service by contracting out the entire billing and collection function to a Blue Cross Plan or insurer which will agree to pay a single monthly check for all services, based on a collaborative strategic plan and budget. The contract, of course, would provide for monitoring monthly income and expenditures to make necessary immediate adjustments when the budgeted projections of the bottom line turn out to be inadequate. Also, if the bottom line turns out to be positive, funds would be available for capital expenditures. This arrangement enables the hospital to concentrate on improving quality and access, as expenditures decline, with increasing emphasis on population and community care. For the contracting hospital, there is no longer any uncompensated care, and no unpleasant involvement with patients about collections, and no longer any worries about the bottom line. For more information about this approach, call me at 215-561-5730, or e-mail. Right on, Bob

David Hold (10/18/2013 at 2:26 PM)
I can say finally the industry or at least some in the industry are waking up to reality. Over the past few years i have been preaching that the one thing the industry lacks is vision and they should be taking lessons from their banking colleagues who learned over a hundred years ago that if a customer wants to make a dollar deposit will not travel fifty miles to accomplish it however if he needs to borrow a large sum of money he will travel and that is called branching.




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