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Physician Hat Tricks
Elyas Bakhtiari, Managing Editor

What distinguishes a physician leader from other doctors? The AMA puts the number of physicians in the United States at roughly 940,000, which includes both active and inactive doctors in virtually all practice settings and represents many top-notch clinicians, researchers, and residents. But how many of them can be considered leaders? [Read More]
  May 15, 2008

Editor's Picks
Meet Dr. McSleepy
I'll spare you the Grey's Anatomy joke (you can find that in the article) and get right to the good stuff: Canadian researchers have developed and successfully tested an "automated anesthesiologist," named McSleepy, that can calculate appropriate drug doses faster and more precisely than a human physician. Don't worry, the computerized system isn't designed to replace anesthesiologists. Researchers hope it will improve patient safety and allow anesthesiologists to monitor patients from outside the operating room. [Read More]
Free medical school?
Physicians are choosing high-paying subspecialties over primary care for a number of reasons, one of the biggest being the six-figure debt they are saddled with after training. Many in the industry hope that reducing this financial burden will help alleviate physician distribution problems. Cleveland Clinic recently announced that its medical school will go tuition free for all students, and the University of Central Florida plans on doing the same next year. Offering loan repayment assistance has also become one of the most effective recruitment incentives. Will students return to primary care if they don't have to worry about paying back loans? Doubtful, but it may make life easier for those who do choose primary care. [Read More]
House calls turn to sales calls
Forget house calls, doctors with Kaiser Permanente Colorado are now making sales calls to emphasize the "value of health insurance and wellness to members and their workers and potential members," according to the Denver Business Journal. Most sales people can speak to the details about insurance but know little about medicine, so bringing along a physician to answer healthcare questions makes sense from Kaiser's perspective. But how will patients react to a doctor making a pitch for an HMO? My guess is these doctors are in danger of losing a little patient trust. [Read More]
Dropping malpractice costs
Though Massachusetts is considered a malpractice "crisis state" by the AMA, its physicians are paying less for coverage (adjusting for inflation) than they were in the 1990s, according to this Boston Globe report. Although malpractice is still a concern for most physicians—insurance represents 7% of practice costs on average—it is pretty clear that the nationwide malpractice crisis of a few years ago has passed. Premiums tend to cycle up and down, however, so the market could easily change again soon. [Read More]
Survey: Private payer oncology reimbursement trends
If you work in an oncology practice setting or in a physician practice with oncologists, please take a moment fill out this survey on reimbursement. We will publish the overall results in an upcoming edition and all respondents will be entered to win a $250 cash prize. [Take the Survey Now]
Business Rx
Calculate ROI for Locum Tenens Physicians:
Locum tenens physicians are important to providing continuity of care, but their impact on revenue should also be considered. By treating patients who might otherwise not have been seen or who may have gone elsewhere, they can maintain revenue streams in the absence of permanent physicians. [Read More]
Physician News
Teenagers take embarrassing ailments to Second Life doctors
The Guardian - May 15, 2008
Doctors can help lower hospital costs
HealthDay/Washington Post - May 14, 2008
Disclosing drug makers payments to docs gets boost
AP/Yahoo News - May 14, 2008
Philadelphia doctor leads colleagues in Myanmar relief effort
Philadelphia Inquirer - May 15, 2008
Medical know-how raises suicide risk for doctors
AP/USA Today - May 9, 2008
June 12, 2008: Marketing your physician practice: A guide to growth
On Demand: Retention strategies to keep top physicians
On Demand: Service Line ROI: Financial decision-making to grow your physician practice
From HealthLeaders Magazine
Shared Success
HealthLeaders May 2008
Crafting a true partnership-often with a perceived competitor-is a complex task. Here's how some hospitals are doing it. [Read More]
PhysicianLeaders Forum

Unhappy Physicians: Contributor Edwin Leap, MD, ponders the reasons for physician discontent and argues that more emphasis on work-life balance, and less on compensation, may be the key to a happier physician work force. [Read More]
Audio Feature

Disaster Planning: New Orleans urologist Neil Baum, MD, discusses disaster planning and how having an EMR minimized the damage done to his practice during Hurricane Katrina. [Listen Now]
Sponsor PhysicianLeaders

Contact Lisa Brown, Director of Integrated Sales, at or call 781.639.1872.
Resources From HealthLeaders Media

There's more to marketing your physician practice than a clever ad; learn about the up-front research and the simple but effective tools needed to develop, track, and measure a strategic marketing plan during our June 12 audioconference.
Keep up with the latest physician compensation news and analysis with a monthly subscription to Physician Compensation & Recruitment.
Read about the latest business strategies to help you grow beyond traditional practice models in Physician Entrepreneurs: Going Retail.
Start marketing your practice or refine your existing marketing program with Physician Entrepreneurs: Marketing Toolkit, a new HealthLeaders Media book that combines expert tips with marketing samples, tools, forms, and checklists that will help grow your practice.
Find practice-management ideas in The Doctor's Office, a monthly newsletter.
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