In A Perfect World Blog Series – Part One
By Andrew Craigie,
Are you a physician ready to change the game in your medical practice?
You are committed to excellence for your patients, and realize that your business has become all-consuming. It’s time to put into place a new way of thinking, and receive the lifestyle you deserve inside your practice, and within your own life. We would like to review with you a timeless author’s perspective on thinking, and new areas to examine that can open up endless opportunities. Your perfect practice can exist, it’s simply time we look at things through a new lens.
Systems Thinking vs Tactical Thinking
The E-Myth by Michaele Gerber remains one of the most sensible and informative books of this era. Geber’s lessons are pragmatic and effective when put into practice. The principles of E-myth are timeless wisdom when applied in work and life for medical practitioners of all stripes, particularly those who aspire to own and operate truly great medical practices.
E-myth makes the distinction between going to work on your business versus going to work in your business. Going to work on your medical practice is Systems Thinking. Going to work in your Medical Practice is Tactical Thinking.
This principle makes rational sense but is particularly difficult for physicians because their bread and butter come from touching the patient; you only get paid for what you do. While that is true for most practitioners, what if we can figure out how to structure your practice so you can become a “force multiplier”. More importantly how can your business itself become a force multiplier because you have adopted disciplines that make it so?
Consider just three areas ripe with opportunity for the physician who is committed to changing the game in their medical practice: workflow, process standardization, and technology.
Start by examining your workflows, observe how your team and patients move through your practice identify bottlenecks, duplication, needless handling of information. Redesign your workflows to eliminate waste and improve reliability.
Next, test your solution and see if it achieves the gains you hoped for. If the changes work, adopt them, if not, modify your approach and test the changes again. Once you have settled on the best process, document it and train everyone on your team to follow the established standard. By doing this, you will reduce confusion, frustration and improve consistency of outcomes.
Lastly consider how you are deploying technology. For example, most medical practices use electronic medical records (EMR’s) but surprisingly, many fail to fully realize the features of these systems and the benefit they can bring to the medical practice. Look at how your EMR can facilitate communication in your practice. Are you using the features in your EMR to enable efficient communication? Integrated document handling, telephone orders, patient portals and lab interfaces are just a few features that are standard in most systems. Incorporating the use of these features in your standardized workflows and employing them rigorously will dramatically improve the productivity of your practice and the satisfaction of your team.
Interactive voice technology and virtual assistants are other emerging technologies that are quickly becoming a valuable part of the patient journey. Patients appreciate the convenience of being in control of conversation flow and routing call traffic over these automated channels frees up valuable staff time to assist patients that benefit most from a person-to-person interaction.
We would like to introduce you to one such technology, iPX Physicians https://www.linkedin.com/company/ipx-physicians/ .It is bringing a fresh perspective to the physician office, harnessing advancements in technology and innovative practice design so our physician partners can work on their business and experience the joy of practicing medicine again.