To the Editor:
Your February 2001 issue was one of the most helpful ever. The self-test [“The Family Practice Management Practice Self-Test,” page 41] not only revealed shortcomings in our practice but put them in the context of “how important is this to us?” The results enabled us to prioritize what might otherwise have seemed like a long, unrelated list of “should do’s.”
I feel no practice is too big or small to benefit from an annual meeting [“The Meeting You Won’t Want to Miss: Annual Strategic Planning,” page 28]. Our group of seven family doctors has done this for about 15 years, and it’s well worth the investment of our time and energy. Each fall we have a two-day retreat, with physicians and the entire staff meeting on day one and physicians and spouses meeting on day two. Since we began actively eliciting staff input in this and other venues, our practice has become more innovative and energized. Including spouses in dialogue and decision making is essential. Most decisions made at the retreat affect finances and/or the schedule. These are family issues, and we find that our plans succeed when we all share in the process of defining our vision and setting our goals.
We appreciate FPM and find it to be inspirational and informative.