Physician retention hinges on communication
The rise in hospital employment, combined with physician shortages, has made physician recruitment more competitive than ever for hospitals. Many are struggling to find ways to distinguish themselves in a crowded and heavily regulated market.
Given the amount of resources going toward recruitment, it came as a surprise when we learned that 83% of physicians who responded to a recent Jackson Physician Search survey said their hospital did not have a physicians’ retention program. However, it’s important to note that only 30% of administrators responded the same way. So these findings seem to point to the fact that retention programs exist, but they aren’t being effectively communicated to physicians.
But even if this is the case, there’s still a problem to be addressed. After all, physicians can’t appreciate a hospital’s retention efforts if they aren’t aware of them. In other words, a poorly communicated retention program is probably not a very successful one.
So what makes a retention program successful?
Strategic Plan Design
Once a benefit plan has been established, it’s likely to be ignored. Unfortunately, that means many hospitals have physician benefit plans that are no longer working to their advantage. As an organization grows, its objectives change. So it’s important for hospitals to regularly team up with their advisors to be sure their benefit offerings are aligned with their top priorities. For example, if a hospital needs to retain a particular service line in its emergency department, its benefit plan could be tailored to that end.
The Appropriate Funding Method
It’s also important for hospitals to routinely reevaluate their approach to benefit funding. Different funding methods are best suited to different situations. Some might be more immediately cost-efficient while others can provide opportunities for cost recovery down the road, so a sponsor’s approach will vary depending on whether they want to focus on short-term or long-term sustainability. By aligning its benefit funding strategy with its current and most pressing needs, a hospital can better position itself to meet its bottom line goals.
Another benefit of routine plan review is that it helps keep plans compliant. The world of health care law is constantly changing. That’s why we partner with the leading healthcare and employee benefit law firms to make sure our clients are able to maximize their participant benefits while remaining compliant.
No matter how well a plan is designed to meet the needs of an organization and its physicians, if it isn’t properly communicated, it will fail. In many cases, since both the HR and medical staff offices are involved in physician communication, it’s unclear where certain responsibilites lie, making it easy for communications to fall through the cracks. That’s why it’s so important to be able to rely on a partner like MaxWorth. Our team helps hospitals establish and follow through on a plan for physician communication. Furthermore, we oversee the ongoing education of physician plan participants, making sure they not only stay on track for retirement, but also maintain their financial wellness in every stage of their careers.
Schedule a call with one of our plan consultants to discuss how to better design, implement, and communicate your physician retention program.
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