A key component in understanding the health of your medical business.
One of the first undertakings we embark on with a client is to gain an understanding of their practice referral and patient history.
Why? To ensure we make appropriate marketing recommendations, we need to have a full appreciation of what the practice’s future goals are as well as to see how the practice has been performing over the last few years. There are some standard statistics we examine that give us a very good insight into a practice. Most practice management software has the ability to generate referrer and patient reports, but the name of the report may differ from one software to the next. Also, the data we are seeking to pull varies from General Practice to Specialist Practice. This can include:
Referrers by volume
This identifies the referrers by the number of patients they refer (i.e. in the case of Blue Chip this data is listed under patient count).
Referrers by revenue
This identifies referrers by the greatest revenue. This can then be cross referenced against referrers by volume for greater insight.
Item number volume
This identifies the volume of specific item numbers billed.
Item number revenue
Identifies the most valuable item numbers based on billings.
For data to give a true picture of business performance, we ask established practices to provide per annum data based on a three-year period and then compare the data to identify patterns of increase or decrease.
There are a wide range of reports readily available from most practice management software, however, there are some common problems we encounter when trying to access and manipulate this data to gain a true understanding of the business.
Incorrect data entry
This is a common problem whereby there are multiple secretarial staff making data entries each using their own methods and habits. In specialist practices, lack of protocols around entry consistency frequently results in multiple listings for the same doctor thereby skewing data.
Data is not reviewed regularly
When not reviewed regularly (monthly) the business of the practice can be maintaining a steady decrease or miss an opportunity for greater increase. An example in specialist practice is that a reliable, older strong referrer can disappear, or a new strong referrer is not recognised. We also find that often staff are unaware of how to access and generate reports.
Format and volume of data
In most instances the data is valuable but is bulky and it proves difficult to recognise shifts and trends. We will often create graphs for an easier visual understanding of patterns and behaviours.
Are you basing your business marketing activities on solid evidence?
Just as solid protocols have proven to aid better clinical outcomes, good clean data and regular review checks are an essential ingredient to better business outcomes and should be a key factor when embarking on marketing your practice.
Need help understanding your business data? CJU can help. Call us to arrange for a complimentary consultation – 1300 941 250.