Building comprehensive physician strategy and manpower development

Background

Our Client was a large tertiary health system in the Midwest with an employed provider network that encompasses the majority of the active hospital medical staff. Historically, decisions about physician and advanced practitioner recruitment had been made by a multitude of executives for varying reasons, with the employed provider network driving its own strategy while the health system focused on service line goals and execution of its own strategic plan. This resulted in very inefficient decisions about provider recruitment, costing the health system millions of dollars annually in wasted resources and missed revenue opportunities, as well as exponentially increasing employed provider network subsidies. HSG was engaged to help build a comprehensive Physician Strategy and Manpower Development that focused on uniting the strategies of the employed network and the health system and would ensure the manpower strategy was being executed with overall organizational goals in mind.

How HSG Helped

HSG focused on executing the following components of the planning process:

  • Assessing market opportunities for incremental growth, to define incremental providers needed to capture that growth
  • Analyzing provider supply and demand within the market, along with potential succession planning issues on the medical staff, to determine market needs for providers
  • Evaluating existing practice capacity within the employed network, to ensure recruitment decisions were not made in areas where the health system had surplus capacity
  • Evaluating dynamics in specialties where both employed and independent providers existed in the market, and how best to address recruitment needs in those specialties
  • Evaluating the usage of advanced practitioners within the employed group, to determine how these providers would be addressed in the recruitment plan, and to evaluate barriers to greater usage
  • Evaluating the appropriateness of the subsidies for the employed network, and what impact growth of the employed network would have on the health system, with a focus on keeping the organization financial sustainable.
  • Broadly engaging stakeholders within the organization – executive leadership, employed network leadership, employed and independent providers, service line leadership, etc – to build internal awareness into the dynamics needing to be addressed, and to create buy-in for the planning process.

All of these elements encompassed a three-year Physician Strategy and Manpower Development Plan, which defined the summary level of provider recruitment and placement for the entire organization, along with expected financial impacts to the health system and employed network.

Results

Overall, the Physician Strategy and Manpower Development Plan has resulted in hospital and physician network leadership executing a physician strategy consistent with the system’s strategic goals.

  • Primary care geographic presence and access have seen major growth due to having a comprehensive growth plan in place, resulting in increased market share in new markets.
  • The network has significantly shifted its utilization of advanced practitioners now that it has a defined plan for recruiting and integrating them into the employed practices, resulting in a lower run-rate on growth in practice subsidies and growth in primary care access overall.
  • Recruitment support to independent practices has been streamlined due to having a coordinated plan for those specialties.
  • Revenue growth continues to be strong as a result of having a coordinated recruitment plan to provide the resources necessary to support service line growth.
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