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Monday, June 4, 2012

Consolidation, hospitalists and how we all win

Modern Healthcare recently talked hospitalist consolidation. The article by Andis Robeznieks thoroughly explored the reasons, rationale, present and future of this growing trend. Andis dug into the market’s top players—including Eagle Hospital Physicians—and found everyone from the big to small are hunting top talent—the physicians who deliver the patient care they’ve committed too.

So how does a physician recruitment provider out-recruit and out-perform a market with so many players? What options are there, what opportunities exist?

Take the hospital’s position. It starts with the pressure to perform. That translates into somehow improving profits while always improving—and proving—that patient care is top quality. Then, we face the trickle-down phenomenon. It starts with hospital performance metrics that must look really good. Patient care must never waiver. Physicians and their healthcare teams must be the personal and professional caretakers. Then, there’s the business side of health care. Administrators are like Indiana Jones, who runs at a record pace to avoid tribesmen shooting poison darts. “Jacque, Jacque, start the plane!” There’s an ever-present pressure to drive business performance and budgets—actuals vs. projections. It often seems like a fruitless endeavor: To control costs and improve patient care. And, prove it all.

These pressures, plus the rolling tide of healthcare reform (and hundreds of other variables), are driving much of the consolidation among hospitalist recruitment providers. This consolidation reaps quality improvements, standardization and a larger pool of high-performing physician hospitalists. These are the value-added deliverables a hospital desperately needs. So, yes, the hospitalist market is fragmented and extremely competitive. But that’s good for the customer in terms of pricing and performance.

As hospitalist providers, that means walking the talk and proving the value proposition.

We’re challenged to be smart enough to build collaboration, alignment, accountability and innovation—continually.

Hospitals win. Physicians win. As does Eagle and others.

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