Talking about hospital survival in California is not catastrophizing! Several centers have closed since the introduction of AB5 in 2020 with its alterations to independent worker status. In an effort to avoid this fate, some have contracted with an anesthesia service. It’s a viable solution you, too, may want to consider.
So – in this article, we’ll
- deep dive into anesthesia management services and
- how they can bring back stability.
But first, a quick recap to see how acute care hospital survival has become a real fear for executive leadership in some areas.
Fears and Frustrations About Your Anesthesia Service
Let’s listen in to a hypothetical medical colleague, who we’ll call Dr. Sarah Johnson. She’s an experienced Chief Medical Officer sharing her biggest fears and frustrations!
Yours may be different but you probably recognize the reality of them:
- I’m afraid of losing my hospital’s top anesthesia talent to other hospitals that may offer more competitive pay and benefits.
- I’m frustrated at not being able to provide the highest clinical and ethical standards in anesthesia care due to a lack of resources or expertise.
- Worse, I begin to fear financial ruin and bankruptcy for my hospital due to the high costs of providing quality anesthesia care, which we can’t do without.
Naturally, “Dr. Johnson’s” biggest wants and desires reflect those points:
- I’d love to have access to the best anesthesia services adhering to the highest clinical and ethical standards.
- If possible, I’d like to work with a reliable and trustworthy anesthesia provider that offers complete transparency and authenticity. It would need to be a solution that serves both our patients and our financial situation.
- Instead of worrying at night, I’d love to sleep soundly knowing that my hospital is financially stable and able to provide the best care to our patients.
Leaving hypothetical colleagues aside, you’ve probably already noticed the dichotomy between these two lists. A financial black hole!
And the gap can only be bridged with
- changes to anesthesia contracting and management,
- leaner processes, and
- excellent performance from anesthesiology outsourcing and a well-run operating room.
The last thing you want to contemplate is shutting down or reducing your services. If you can solve the anesthesia challenges of staffing and resources, your throughput will bring in the financial stability you need for survival.
So – you’re thinking about turning to the only other possible solution: contracting with an exclusive anesthesia service.
Let’s look at what’s on offer and what you get if you engage with an anesthesia management company.
How an Anesthesia Service Can Help You Survive as a Hospital
You can find many anesthesia services online that use anesthesia providers in California. They’re not all the same. You’ll need to look for the possibility of a comprehensive service as well as maybe contracting for just a small part of what’s on offer at first.
The key is to check out exactly what they provide so you can be sure that
- your OR’s efficiency will be of the highest standard and
- your anesthesiology care will be first rate – including pre and post care.
We’ll list here seven factors you should take into account, remembering that survival of your hospital is at stake.
1 Recruitment and Contracting of Qualified Providers
In terms of qualifications, you want to ensure all the providers they supply are board certified or eligible anesthesia providers: MDAs and CRNAs. If they have a regular set of specialists they call on, this is fairly easy to check. But also ask about how they choose suppliers to work with them.
2 Team Competency and Experience Matches Your Full Requirements
You may have certain specialties in your hospital, but overall, you want to locate an anesthesia service that can work within any context, such as
- deep-clinical settings, and
- as a rapid response team.
This covers you for any eventuality, but also ensures those specific skills and experience are present in the anesthesia team you’re inviting into your unit.
3 Understanding of the Business of Healthcare
Because the anesthesia service is being “invited in,” you need to make sure they have a deep understanding of acute hospital business. As well as pure specialty skills, check their knowledge of:
- Admin processes – you want successful surgeries, yes, but no friction on the admin side.
- How to work productively in a hospital environment (remember, you don’t know exactly why they work independently!).
- Ways to improve your OR efficiency – if not, you will not improve your throughput and income (necessary to pay for the extra AB5 costs).
- How they can reduce your costs overall, making your service leaner and viable.
4 Professional, Ethical, and Diversity Values
This is self-explanatory, but you want them to serve your patients well. And this depends on how professional and ethical the contracted team is.
In addition, you need to believe they’ll treat every single patient with the same respect, whoever they are. This can be a gut feeling initially. And sometimes that’s all you have to go on.
5 Up-to-Date Knowledge of Federal and State Medical Regulations and Requirements
Interview the targeted anesthesia staffing company. How do they maintain their skills and knowledge? How do they ensure policy compliance? Tease out their knowledge of medical regulations and requirements. It’s your hospital and your right to ask!
6 Services Offered to Manage Your Anesthesia Needs
Discuss with them which “bundles” of services they offer and whether you can scale up as needed. Ask how they find the right people, negotiate contracts, process insurance, etc.
7 How You Feel About Their Setup When You Speak or Meet
You’re looking for signs of their attitude, compassion, courtesy, transparency, and general “fit” for your facility. As we said, there are many anesthesia services to choose from.
Meridian Medical Solutions Can Help You Survive!
We write this blog because we want you to find the best anesthesia service for you! At Meridian Medical Services we offer a complete solution for your challenges in anesthesiology leadership, bringing you a network of highly skilled providers from all medical contexts.
We can also take over and administer your department if that’s what you need. And we leave a director in each area we work in, so your needs continue to be met.
But what makes us unique is that we’re deeply committed to transparency. You won’t encounter hidden costs when you work with us, and we deliver what we promise: excellence, compassion, and a leaner unit.
Ready to ensure your hospital’s future? Schedule your consultation with us today. Let’s talk!