Changing your anesthesia group can be as easy or as complicated as you can imagine. First, ask yourself: “Why do I need to change anesthesia providers?” Next, you will likely ask yourself: “How do I decide on the best possible solution?” Your answers to these questions will determine how easy it will be to transition to a new anesthesia group. Most hospitals would never change anesthesia management services unless a serious issue arose, such as a breach of contract, non-compliance with hospital policies, inadequate coverage, or the anesthesia stipend becoming too large. There are many reasons why hospitals are generally reluctant to change anesthesia groups, and these may include:
Politics and dynamics of the medical staff
Current providers having been affiliated with the hospital for a long time, and there is concern that they may be fired by a new group
Potential for losing business to the competing hospital because the surgeons had ties with the anesthesia department.
There are occasions when a facility may not be changing anesthesia providers, but only management groups. This may or may not immediately affect the hospital’s bottom line, or office politics, but it may later on. This scenario happens more frequently in smaller hospitals where they are acquired by larger groups who bring along their anesthesia providers from their larger hospitals. Typically, these anesthesia companies will propose salary cuts to the existing group’s providers with a “take it or leave it” stance. If the anesthesia providers decide to leave, the management firm may hire less experienced providers at lower salaries, leaving the hospital and surgeons with a less-prepared anesthesia staff.
After a decision has been made to seek out a new anesthesia management company, you may be asking yourself, “Where do I find another group?” Referrals from other hospital administrators are a great place to start, followed by an internet search. Next, you will need to consider whether you need a large management firm, a small company, or perhaps you hire a hospital anesthesia group solely for your facility. The ultimate decision rests on what is best for your patients, physicians, and profitability for the hospital.
Does the group have a proven track record of providing safe, high quality anesthesia care?
Can it provide adequate coverage for my size hospital?
Does the group have the administrative staff required to support their practice, or will the hospital have to supply these needs?
Have they kept track of patient satisfaction scores?
Are they willing to attend and serve on hospital committees to partner with the hospital in achieving its goals and missions?
Depending on the arrangement, are they willing to meet with administration on a regular basis to discuss issues and give a financial update?
Are they eager to assist the hospital and the O.R. in improving efficiency, increasing satisfaction, and decreasing cost?
Does the management firm treat their employees with respect, or do you hear rumblings of discontent?
These are a few questions to reflect on when making a decision on a new anesthesia service provider. Replacing your anesthesia group can be as easy as selecting a group from an internet site and signing them to a contract. The most important consideration is whether their philosophy matches yours and if they willing to work with the hospital to become an integrated partner providing the care and understanding to your patients, staff, and physicians that adheres to your mission statement.
Diversified Professionals, Inc. is a full-service anesthesia provider whose passion for anesthesia care matches our desire to partner with clients sharing likeminded values to help them achieve their goals. We view each day as an opportunity—an opportunity to earn the trust of each patient we care for as they put their faith in us to protect them—and an opportunity to work with our clients to achieve their missions of providing excellent care to their communities. DPI promises a smooth transition for all new clients, and we can create a customized plan of success for your facility today.