Australian Medical Benchmarks – setting the bar for premium practice performance

msi - medical benchmarksBy Jarrod Bramble, Cutcher & Neale, Accountants, Newcastle.

Why is one medical practice more profitable than another of similar size?  How do you lift productivity and improve staff moral through better practice management? What are the key drivers that determine the overall financial performance of a medical practice and how do you measure them?  The answers are closer than you think.

You’re probably familiar with the axiom that, as the principal of a business (medical or otherwise), you should be working ‘on it’ not ‘in it’. However, that’s by and large easier said than done, especially when your expertise is the very reason why the business exists.

For too many medical practitioners, the demands of working ‘in’ the business make it tricky to fully understand and focus on the key drivers that determine the financial success of their practice. As a result, they may not have the most efficient reporting systems in place to measure, monitor and improve performance. Without that information, they could be literally selling themselves short by not maximising practice profitability.

Meanwhile, a similar medical practice in the same part of town is performing significantly better. So what’s the difference?

Over many years of dealing with medical practices, we’ve noticed a big disparity in financial performance from one to the next. This is due in part to a lack of understanding by practice principals of the underlying financial drivers of the business as noted above. Perhaps more importantly, though, it’s also due to a lack of valid information about just what makes a successful practice tick. It stands to reason that you can’t measure anything without a valid benchmark.

Realising the importance of this, Jarrod Bramble, head of Cutcher & Neale’s Specialist Medical Service division, set out to do something about it. The result is a collaboration between Cutcher & Neale, the Australian Association of Practice Managers (AAPM) and the RACGP to produce the first ever comprehensive set of national practice performance benchmarks.

The objective is to help every practice in Australia be the best it can possibly be by lifting financial performance across the board.

The Medical Benchmarks offers practice owners and managers a powerful tool to:

  • Compare your practice to others around Australia
  • Understand how your practice is really performing
  • Gain a better understanding of your business
  • Improve productivity and team morale
  • Improve your bottom line
  • Gain a competitive edge

While ambitious in its scope, we’re in no doubt that Medical Benchmarks will help improve not only individual practices but the industry as a whole.

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