A shortage of as many as 120,000 physicians is anticipated in the US by the year 2030, while growing numbers of physicians have cited frustrations with EHR requirements for their decision to retire early or sell their practices. Industry leader Tranquilmoney refers to the need for technology that works FOR a practice and its quality of patient care—not against it.
(South Orange, NJ) November 5, 2018—Physician demand continues to grow faster than supply, leading to a projected shortfall between 42,600 and 121,300 physicians by 2030 according to new research released by The Association of American Medical Colleges.(1) Existing practitioners have faced many challenges working with Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems. Navigating can become a virtual minefield, peppered with regulations and requirements that frustrate physicians and their staff, with a limited choice of canned systems to choose from. Tranquilmoney founder, Dr. Karun Philip points to the need for physicians to have software that works FOR them in navigating the EHR; not against them and their practice.
Reasons for this deficit include an aging demographic of both the patient and physician populations, sprawling medical monoliths that absorb smaller practices by the thousands, and regulatory changes.
- America’s aging population is expected to grow about 11 percent to 359.4 million by 2030. Population under age 18 will grow by only 3 percent, while population aged 65 and over will grow by 50 percent. (2)
- America has 2.3 physicians per 1000 people now ranking 52nd in the world and this ratio will become worse as the aging population grows. Forty percent of all currently active physicians will be 65 or older within the next decade; many are readying for retirement by cutting down their hours or actually leaving the workforce. (2)
- The trend of hospitals buying U.S. physician practices continues, with acquisitions of at least 5,000 independent physician practices between July 2015 and July 2016. From mid-2012 to mid-2016, percentage of hospital-employed physicians rose by more than 63%. In 2016, just 33 percent of physicians identify as independent practice owners or partners, down from 48.5 percent in 2012.(3)(4)
- Regulations have come into play that restrict and govern medical practice management far more than in any earlier era. Unique for physicians are certain requirements surrounding electronic health records (EHRs) and new reporting regulations regarding patient visits. (5)
Problems with EHR systems
There are many problems cited by physicians with using electronic records: they cost physicians an average extra 48 minutes per day. “Surprisingly, a third (33.9%) reported that it took longer to find and review medical record data” with electronic records management than without it.(3)
Only 11 percent of physicians said electronic health records improved their interactions with patients, while 60 percent said they “detracted from patient interaction,” the Physicians Foundation noted in 2016.(3)
More than half of surveyed physicians think electronic health records limit them from providing high quality care to patients. (6)
The need for technology that works FOR a practice
With the growing population over 50, there is a large need for more private practicing physicians to help meet their health care needs. EHR’s should be able to make it easier to manage patients, save them time and deliver high quality care.
“Rather than fight with EHRs, there needs to be user-friendly, navigable practice management software that scans existing patient data, makes the transition to the EHR smooth, removes the bureaucratic nightmare, and enables the doctor to have a higher ratio of physician-patient time,” says Tranquilmoney Co-Founder and President, Dr. Karun Philip. “In addition, it may also help avert the massive shortage of doctors.” (7)
Philip also notes that paper-based billing systems can be preserved for a grace period while implementing EHR’s as a standard practice. “Our unique transition approach allows physicians to retain their paper-based systems if they want, just scan all paper and send to us every day. By the next morning the data is in the EHR system, but the paper patient charts are also there for the continuation of existing processes.” Over a few months, Philip states Tranquilmoney can tailor the customizable user interface and move to complete electronic practice management, while meeting all the EHR requirements.
Tranquilmoney provides their software and consulting services free for clients who also use their Medical Billing services—for which those services have been proven to yield an average of 20% increase in realized revenues. “This makes the transition to EHR a profit center rather than a cost”, says Dr. Philip.
Tranquilmoney was incorporated in 1995 to provide solutions aimed at reversing the trend of doctors in independent practices feeling at a loss with the increased complexity of the business and regulatory side of the healthcare industry. The pattern of physicians selling their practices to large hospitals is one that is avoidable. Tranquilmoney has the tools in place to provide physician practices with financial management services, such as physician receivables management, pharmacy receivables management, healthcare insurance forms processing, and data capture services. In short, doctors can focus on patient care knowing that their practices are in order. The company is based in South Orange, New Jersey with back office facilities in Chennai, India. Tranquilmoney Inc. operates as a subsidiary of MM Group. For more information, visit www.TranquilMoney.com.
- “New Research Shows Increasing Physician Shortages in Both Primary and Specialty Care.” AAMCNews, 11 Apr. 2018.
- Howley, Elaine K. “What Can Be Done About the Coming Shortage of Specialist Doctors?” S. News & World Report, U.S. News & World Report, 2 May 2018.
- Tuccille, J.D. “How Formerly Independent Doctors Were Pushed Out of Business.” com, 28 Aug. 2018.
- Young, Kerry Dooley. “Analysis Shows Hospital Ownership of Physician Practices Growing Rapidly.” Medscape Medical News, Independent Digital News and Media, 19 Mar. 2018.
- Howley, Elaine K. “Is the Independent Doctor Disappearing?” S. News & World Report, U.S. News & World Report, 13 June 2018.
- “EHRs, financial instability contribute to physicians’ pessimism.” Modern Health Care News. Modern Healthcare.19 October 2018.
- PRACTICETRACKER™, EHr and Practice management software. com. 2018. Web.