Patient care vs. making $ for the docs.

  1. Has anyone else in private offices run into this problem? My office recently had a big meeting (run by a non-nurse office manager) about how to improve "productivity". For almost an hour the issue of how to make more money was discussed. Finally at the end I was so enraged I loudly voiced my disgust with the whole issue- "What About Patient Care??? Does This Matter At All??" Everyone agreed that this is an important issue, blah blah blah and of course nothing has changed. We are still evaluated based on our contribution to the bottom line, not to the patients. Anyway I am happy to say that I am leaving to work for a non-profit home health agency where patient care is top priority. I sometimes feel that working in a doctor's office I have become a doctor's advocate, not a patient advocate. Scary!
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   darla80
    Originally posted by Jeanbean:
    Has anyone else in private offices run into this problem? My office recently had a big meeting (run by a non-nurse office manager) about how to improve "productivity". For almost an hour the issue of how to make more money was discussed. Finally at the end I was so enraged I loudly voiced my disgust with the whole issue- "What About Patient Care??? Does This Matter At All??" Everyone agreed that this is an important issue, blah blah blah and of course nothing has changed. We are still evaluated based on our contribution to the bottom line, not to the patients. Anyway I am happy to say that I am leaving to work for a non-profit home health agency where patient care is top priority. I sometimes feel that working in a doctor's office I have become a doctor's advocate, not a patient advocate. Scary!
    I am sorry to hear about the pracitce with such a monetary emphasis. I used to work for a group of physicians and often experienced that same mentality.I must say that approach usually came from nonmedical managment. I now work for a single Internal med doc and it is all about the patients! I love it!! I wish you success in Home health.. that one on one patient contact in Home health is rewarding. And just think when you call the physicians office with messages you will understand that offfice scenario and be able to get right to patient issue. Good LUCK!!
  4. by   Dabrown
    I work in a family practice with 5 MDs, and 12 FNPs. We have an active patient base of app. 9000 patients; not only do we provide for the "standard" scheduled patients, but we also have a walk in acute care clinic. In our community (primarily rural), we provide a full range of services, chronic disease mgmt, peds, women's health, etc. Having been with the practice for 6 years, we have struggled with being able to provide "quality patient care" and yet make a living for our families. The practice is independent of any hospital system and the senior physicians make sacrifices to see that their staff is adequately compensated. I'm quite sure if we all gave our definition of quality patient care, we might come up with several different ideas of what that exactly is. For me, in addition to many other facets, this involves serving as a patient advocate in a society that allows insurance companies to dictate patient care. Helping our patients to navigate through a sea of papaerwork was not what I bargained for when I went to nursing school. Nonetheless, it is reality. I don't see the doctors I work for making "big bucks". I do see ordinary, hardworking people trying to make a living, taking care of ordinary, hardworking people. We have also over time, come to an agreement, that I will always be a patient advocate, even if that means "redirecting" the focus of the doctor to the needs of the patient instead of his/her own. This has created for us, and environment of mutual respect and pride in the care we choose to deliver. It is quite ashamed that doctors (and nurses) get caught up in making a buck, or complaining about the system, that we forget that the bottom line is working within the framework we have to see that our patients get what they need, while simultaneously changing the system from the inside.

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    dab
  5. by   mcrow
    In our goverment facility the bottom line used to never be an issue, but as budget crunches have hit even the goverment over the past few years, it is now much like everywhere else. Admin. has to worry if we have enough to operate which means cuts to staff, resourses, and into quality patient care. I am guessing a non-profit agency also has budget concerns that cut into quality care also.

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