Medical directors’ duties linked to quality metrics

An MGMA-ACMPE survey suggests that administrative skills, patient satisfaction and lower readmission rates will play a bigger role in job responsibilities — and maybe compensation, too.

By — Posted May 7, 2013

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Medical directors will need to be increasingly savvy about administrative tasks, financial planning and social skills, because their duties are being tied to quality metrics, according to a new survey.

About 40% of surveyed medical directors said their duties are tied to patient stays, safety and satisfaction, according to an annual MGMA-ACMPE benchmarking tool. MGMA-ACMPE is an association for professional administrators and leaders of medical group practices.

Additionally, job duties centered on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ core measures — including helping to lower readmission rates, reduce lengths of hospital stays, and increase patient and staff satisfaction.

Changes coming

Medical directors will see their jobs change as more emphasis is placed on value-based care, said Todd B. Evenson, MGMA-ACMPE’s director of data solutions. That means medical directors will be more closely aligned with administrators, forming teams that will collaborate to address these quality metrics, he added.

Business and financial skills are becoming more important for medical directors as well, he said.

While the survey didn’t specifically ask whether pay is affected by performance on these quality metrics, anecdotal evidence suggests that it is, Evenson said. Currently, physicians who are judged on quality metrics receive about 4% of their pay based on these metrics, he said.

It was the first time the annual survey asked medical directors about quality metrics.

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