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Does a Hospital Want to Buy Your Private Practice?
By Sheri Porter
Ellis has specialized in health care law for nearly 30 years and focuses on developing collaborative relationships between hospitals and physician groups. He told AAFP News Now that he understands the current health care climate and the impact the recently passed health care reform legislation will have on physicians.
The topic of physicians as hospital employees is timely because health care reform mandates greater collaboration between hospital systems and physicians, said Ellis.
"Physicians feel threatened and are looking for a safe environment in which to practice," he said. "They're inclined to sell to hospitals if they can get the right deal."
Free Diabetes Management Webinar Series Starts in June
The individual webinars and their scheduled air times are
- "The Patient Journey" on June 16 from noon to 1:30 p.m.,
- "The Patient Experience" on July 21 from noon to 1 p.m., and
- "Transitions in Care" on Sept. 8 from noon to 1 p.m.
The webinar series will be led by Leonard Fromer, M.D., an assistant clinical professor at the department of family medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Medicine. TransforMED, a wholly owned subsidiary of the AAFP, helps physician practices undertake patient-centered medical home transformation.
The webinar aims to help physicians make the decision about whether or not to sell their practice and will teach them "what they reasonably should ask for -- and expect from -- that employment relationship," said Ellis.
"We want to identify the pros and cons of physicians selling and becoming employed," he explained.
Most physicians are rightly concerned about the monetary value of their practices, as well as how much they would make as hospital employees, but there's more on the table to consider, said Ellis. He urges physicians to ask tough questions during negotiations, such as how they will fit into a hospital's organizational structure and how much control they will have over management decisions in an employee role.
It's important for physicians to bear in mind the shifts in culture and lifestyle that come with losing their independence as a business owner, said Ellis.
"The greatest shock for physicians is how to fit into a hospital-managed environment," he noted.
For his part, McGeeney will discuss alternatives to selling to a hospital that physicians may want to consider.
Patient-Centered Medical Home Resources TransforMED Rolls Out New Product to Support Solo, Small Practices
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