Family Practice Clinic Breaks Even - A Process Improvement Case Study

The Situation: A Teaching Family Practice Clinic

  • Residents under supervision see patients. The doctors who supervise are all faculty at the University Medical School.
  • The Faculty's first priority is teaching. Their second is research and a distant third priority is clinical practice. Faculty need only a few hours per month in the clinic to keep their credentials.
  • The faculty is not concerned with the financial health of the clinic.
  • The corporation that has supported the family practice clinic absorbed a loss of $500,000 the previous year.
  • In the coming year the clinic is moving into a new facility with a projected loss of $650.000.   

The Goal:

  • Achieve financial break even for the Family Practice Clinic associated with a Major University.

The Solution:

  • Analyze the current situation to identify opportunities to improve the clinic's financial health.
  • Identify options to best utilize space and equipment to optimize patient throughput, flow, access and quality care.
  • Engage the doctors and clinical staff to work for financial improvement and patient satisfaction.
  • Work with the Medical School Dean and Family Practice Leadership to decide and act on a strategy.
  • Work with doctors and staff to implement the strategy and take action to hold people accountable for changing the necessary behaviors.
  • Celebrate progress and successes.

Services Provided:

  • Systemic financial analysis. More...
  • Strategic planning. More...
  • Facilitate staff education and collaboration.More...
  • Project management and plan implementation. More...
  • Conflict resolution. More...
  • Criteria based decision making. More...

The Results:

  • The Dean, Family Practice Leadership, Doctors and Staff aligned around the strategy and goal.
  • They implemented the plan that they participated in creating.
  • Ninety-seven percent of the Doctors and Staff adopted new behavior consistent with success.
  • Financial break even was achieved within 7 months of the start of the project.

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