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    How To Ensure Your Surgical Practice is Meeting its KPIs
    Sari Nossbaum | August 3, 2021

    A successful surgical clinic should be run just like any other business. Targets must be set and key performance indicators (KPIs) must be tracked and reported so that managers, investors, and partners can ensure that the business remains profitable. In the business world today, data is considered “king” as it provides the insights managers need to enhance business performance and smooth out any inefficiencies. In order to report KPIs at a satisfactory level and in a timely manner, practices must have ready access to all the relevant data. Despite how important this is, many surgical practices lag behind in reporting and could be missing out on profits.

     

    Read on to learn more about the challenges inherent in data reporting and how Surgimate can make it easier for you.

     

    It can be daunting trying to make sense of all the data

     

    The Challenges of KPI Reporting

     

     

    One of the biggest challenges when it comes to KPI reporting is the variety of different factors involved. While surgeries, procedures, and injections are the main revenue drivers of the business, it isn’t only the procedures themselves (how many, what kind, and who performed them) that interests management. At any one time, business stakeholders may want to review the cost and number of surgical facilities in use, the number of surgical cancellations and the reasons, the cost of equipment, and more. 

     

     

    Think of where data is stored in your practice. Is it in a series of spreadsheets stored on the company’s central drive or do you use a database or other practice management software? Is the data in one location or spread out in a few different places? Unless your practice uses a centralized system for collecting, collating, and reporting all this information (which many don’t), creating these reports can be tricky and time-consuming.

     

    No Method to the Madness 

     

     

    Crazy as it sounds, the following is a common scenario when surgical practices are asked to provide reports: A busy manager, who is already juggling too many balls, finds themselves desperately scrambling around on the practice management software or calling up patient’s electronic health records (EHRs) trying to pull out all the relevant information. With so many tabs open on their computer and so much information to trawl through, important information is often omitted or data is input inaccurately. 

     

     

    Even more archaic are those practices that try to keep a handle on everything using nothing but a series of Excel spreadsheets. In these practices, staff members waste time trying to locate the right spreadsheet so that they can copy-paste the data into their report. In the worst-case scenario, the information they need is not accessible at all as it was never recorded or it was recorded in such a way as to be impossible to find. 

     

     

    Reporting on KPIs is serious business – your profitability depends on it. As such, the task demands a reliable system that enables you to generate any report you need easily, quickly, and accurately. That’s exactly what you get with Surgimate Practice.

     

    Seamless Reporting with Surgimate Practice

     

     

    When you use Surgimate Practice, all your data is stored in one central repository where it can be readily accessed whenever you need it.  Anytime you need a report or want to see performance charts related to a specific area of your business, you can simply call it up from within the software. The fact that it’s so simple and fast means that instead of investing energy in finding the data itself, you can better use your time to generate insights and identify aspects of your business that could do with improving.

     

     

     

    Take a look at this roundup of some of the reports you can generate with Surgimate Practice and consider how the ability to access this data could help you streamline your practice: 

     

    Number of Surgeries per Month

     

    Who is your top performing surgeon? Which locations are the busiest? Just set your time frame (weekly, monthly, yearly) and then drill down to see how many surgeries a particular surgeon has performed or how many surgeries are carried out in a certain location – particularly useful if you want to explore the usage of any ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs).

     

    Number of Cancellations

     

     

    You probably saw more than your fair share of cancellations over the past year (thanks Covid) but even though things have now calmed down, cancellations are a reality that every practice must face. 

     

     

    You can use the software to establish your benchmark (i.e. the number or percentage of cancellations that is normal for your practice) and then track your cancellations to identify trends, set expectations, and ensure you remain within your norms.

     

    Cancellation Reasons

     

     

    There are many reasons why a surgery might be canceled, from a lack of clearance to insurance authorization issues, no shows, sickness, or someone mistakenly eating before surgery. As you can’t fix what you don’t know, it’s important to track this data. When a report shows that the number of cancellations is above what’s expected, you can investigate further.

     

     

    This is what happened to Surgimate client, IGEA (click here). When a “cancellation reason” report flagged up that many surgeries had been canceled due to patients being scheduled at the wrong facility, they were able to quickly remedy the problem and prevent further cancellations.

     

          

    Block Time Utilization

     

     

    Many surgeries cannot be carried out on-site, so blocks of time must be purchased from local hospitals and other relevant facilities. To avoid wasting funds, managers need to ensure that the time purchased is used effectively. The ability to run reports on block-time usage help practices identify when more block time is needed or where block time needs to be distributed differently among surgeons.

     

     

    Average Time to Book Surgery

     

     

    In a busy practice, multiple surgeries must be scheduled and coordinated daily. As there are so many steps involved in booking each surgery, it’s not always easy to keep things running smoothly. Surgimate helps by automating many of the steps, but it’s still important to track how long scheduling takes so you can remedy any inefficiencies in the workflow. 

     

    Surgimate Practice lets you run reports on a variety of milestones such as, how long it takes from the time the surgery was recommended by the surgeon till the surgery was scheduled, making it easier for you to see where you can tweak your performance. 

     

     

    Benchmark Data (Codes, Equipment, Surgery Length)

     

    Different surgeons have different specialisms as do different practices. You can track procedure types in your system using CPT (Current Procedural Terminology) codes. As some codes are more lucrative than others, keeping an eye on these metrics could help you improve your bottom line.

     

    You can also explore other benchmarks with these reports. For example, you can track the average length of surgeries per CPT code, or staffing requirements and performance per CPT. Tracking the equipment used by CPT code can help with planning.

     

     

     

    Don’t Leave Your Profits to Chance!

     

     

    When you have the right data and can easily pull it into reports that show you exactly how your business is doing and where you can make improvements, you’ll be on the way to boosting your efficiency and your profits. No surgical practice today can afford to ignore the value data can deliver. With a tool like Surgimate Practice, you have a reliable reporting platform that helps you make informed decisions to secure the long-term profitability of your practice.

     

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    About the author: Sari Nossbaum is the Director of Marketing at Surgimate. When she’s not writing insightful articles about surgical management, she can usually be found on her yoga mat or on her road bike, somewhere...
    Published on August 3, 2021. All rights reserved by the author.

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