Expanding on Risk Assessment in Physician Practices

October 28, 2015 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​"What are our processes as we're evaluating practices?" Ann D. Gaffey, RN, MSN, CPHRM, DFASHRM, asked at the top of the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management 2015 presentation, "Hidden Treasures in Physician Offices: Findings of the Hunt Revealed!" Gaffey suggested partnering with the insurer when assessing a practice. "What are the expectations?" Gaffey asked, recommending that these be clear before the assessment takes place. "Prep is key," she said and advised that several pieces of information be known before the assessment: the quantity and type of providers and support staff, office locations, office size or possible sharing or subleasing, the services offered (e.g., lab, radiology), procedures available, the documentation platform used, and any outsourced activities. For an assessment, "it's important to let office staff know you're not going to interfere with the flow of the day," noted Gaffey, and suggested meeting staff in an area of the practice they frequent, such as the staff lounge. Likewise, Julie Radford, JD, CPHRM, suggested reviewing the waiting room of the practice—can the receptionist see the entire room?

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