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New MGMA Data Identifies Most Critical Business Strategies of Top Performing Medical Practices

Press Release - September 30, 2018

MGMA DataDive Better Performers and Analysis Report identify effective ways medical practices can become “Better Performers”
Englewood, Colo. – Today, Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) released their 2018 MGMA DataDive Better Performers and a corresponding analysis report. The report, Winning Strategies From Top Medical Groups, combines robust data from the Better Performers data set with original qualitative research and identifies three top ways in which medical practices can attain “better performer” status.
“The MGMA DataDive Better Performers has long given our industry an in-depth look at the array of factors and metrics that sets top performing practices apart,” said Dr. Halee Fischer-Wright, President and CEO of MGMA. “To fundamentally transform the American healthcare system from the bottom up, we are working to ensure medical practices are empowered with the tools they need to pursue excellence and this report helps them do just that. By taking the data a step further and closely analyzing it to extract tangible and actionable strategies, this report can help practices take their business to the next level.”
Winning Strategies from Top Medical Groups identifies three key ways better performing practices set themselves apart:
  • Build engaging, patient-focused cultures: Effective and transparent communication and engagement—between staff, providers, and patients—show up again and again in our research into better performers. For example, better performers are much more likely to conduct staff, provider, and patient satisfaction surveys and share results transparently throughout the organization. This knowledge empowers the entire staff to identify opportunities for improvement and create action plans.
  • Focus on long-term, strategic progress: Better performers establish clear vision and goals that help them prioritize their efforts and resources while also juggling daily practice operations. They also consistently revisit their strategy to reach these goals, adjusting tactics as needed. To do this, they regularly monitor their performance and invest in analytic tools.
  • Constant work to improve operations: Better performers are systematic about improvement—they invest time and effort in new resources, and they maximize the tools and information already available to them. One of the biggest considerations is technology. These practices see technology as a tool that, if used well, can help them streamline operations, improve communication, boost patient engagement and compliance, and deliver better insights. We also found these practices often leverage MGMA data and tools to benchmark their own performance, including MGMA DataDive Cost and Revenue and MGMA DataDive Provider Compensation.
These top performers reap significant rewards from these efforts. The 2018 MGMA DataDive Better Performers found that these practices achieve higher productivity levels per year, resulting in lower general operating costs as a percentage of revenue, and higher income per physician. This focus on excellence also benefits patients. Most better performing practices offer lower wait times, with primary care practices offering a median 7.5-minute shorter wait time for patients when compared to the industry median.
“The reality is, any practice can achieve top performance when the people within it make a sustained effort to do more of the right things well,” said Ken Hertz, Principal MGMA Consultant. “We developed this report not only to give practices strategies to get the most from their business, but to show them that these efforts pay off—for practices and patients alike. When practices invest in improving their business, patients are more efficiently served, increasing patient satisfaction and health outcomes, and improving patient retention rates. It’s a feedback loop that benefits everyone.”
The 2018 MGMA DataDive Better Performers data set being released today was gathered from 3,085 medical groups that were identified by MGMA as top-performing practices in at least one of four categories— operations, productivity, profitability and value.
Winning Strategies from Top Medical Groups draws from the 2017 MGMA DataDive Better Performers data set was gathered from 2,941 groups; 676 of those groups were considered better performers in at least one of those four same categories and only 32 of the groups achieved better performer designations in three or four categories. Beginning with the 2017 data set, better performers data is reported across multiple MGMA surveys, including the Practice Operations Survey, Cost and Revenue Survey, Management and Staff Compensation Survey and Physician Compensation and Production Survey. Participation in multiple MGMA surveys was required in order to be considered for better performer status. Many of the comparisons between better performers and all other practices were drawn from the 2017 MGMA DataDive Practice Operations Survey data set. Financial comparisons were primarily drawn from the 2017 MGMA DataDive Cost and Revenue Survey data set. The qualitative research was conducted via an online follow-up survey sent to 133 practices that achieved better-performer status in the 2017 data set, of which 33 responded. Learn more at
About MGMA
Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) is the premier association for professionals who lead medical practice. Since 1926, through data, people, insights, and advocacy, MGMA empowers medical group practices to innovate and create meaningful change in healthcare. With a membership of more than 45,000 medical practice administrators, executives, and leaders, MGMA represents more than 12,500 organizations of all sizes, types, structures and specialties that deliver almost half of the healthcare in the United States.

Hollon Kohtz, Media Contact


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