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Workers’ compensation premiums for businesses are set to decline by 6.03 percent this October, according to a statement from the Department of Workforce Development.
That could result in an estimated $134 million in annual savings for businesses, the Tuesday statement noted. It’s the third year that workers’ compensation rates have declined, following an 8.46 percent decrease last year and a 3.19 percent decline in 2016.
“A safe workplace results in a more productive and profitable one for employers,” Ted Nickel, insurance commissioner, said in a statement. "Employers are recognizing the relation between their employees' safety and the savings that ensue as premiums continue to decline."
Mark Grapentine, senior vice president of government relations for the Wisconsin Medical Society, said the report shows that “good news keeps coming” for the state’s workers’ compensation program.
“We’re already a national model, with faster return to work, fantastic patient satisfaction and ready access to the highest-quality healthcare in the nation – all at a cost per claim that is below the national average,” he wrote in an email. “Another significant insurance rate reduction is just more evidence that Wisconsin’s system is win-win for both businesses and their employees.”
Grapentine added that there’s room for improvement, pointing to a need for the state’s on-the-job injury rate drop below the national average. He added that healthcare providers are “always striving to find better ways to improve care.”
Chris Reader, director of health and human resources policy, also lauded the announcement. He said the reduction follows a national trend as employers and workers have invested in and focused on safety. But he noted that costs for medical treatment for workplace injuries are on the rise.
“Had Wisconsin enacted a medical fee schedule like almost every other state, medical costs also would have been kept in check and the insurance reduction today would have been even greater," he wrote in an email.
Reader also argued that the rate reduction doesn’t mean much to fully-insured employers who don’t pay insurance costs and are left footing “incredibly high medical bills.”
Proposals to establish a fee schedule haven't gained traction with lawmakers.
The annual Wisconsin Health News CEO Roundtable is August 14 in Madison. A panel of the state’s leading health system and hospital leaders will discuss the most pressing issues facing their industry.
Register now (link).
The June 18th meeting was well attended by provider medical groups and payers. Below are some of the questions/discussions that took place at the meeting in Madison held at UW Health.
Topics of discussions:Questions submitted by Medical Groups & Network/Open Forum by Medical Groups
By Jennifer Pendleton, MS, MGMA member
Studies of occupational stress pay little attention to features of the physical environment in which the actual work is performed. Yet evidence is accumulating that the physical environment of work affects both job performance and job satisfaction.1
Provider burnout shows consistent negative relationships with perceived quality (including patient satisfaction), quality indicators and perceptions of safety.2 Conversely, nurses who perceive their work units are patient-centered were significantly more satisfied with their jobs than those who do not.3
All of these factors led to the creation of more collaborative workspaces at Concord Surgical Associates, Concord, N.H., for clinical support staff in the outpatient medical practice setting.
Press Ganey surveys all of the clinical providers and staff at Concord Surgical Associates on a biannual basis to determine the level of engagement of the overall institution and each department. The survey results to the question, “My job makes good use of my skills and abilities,” was identified as an area needing improvement in the general surgery department, which included eight surgeons, 11 advanced practitioners (APRN, PA-C), three medical assistants (MAs), three registered nurses (RNs) and five patient care coordinators (PCCs). In response, this department redesigned clinical area workstations to create a more collaborative workspace for clinical support staff and thereby improve employee engagement.
Before the office redesign, the workspace setup was not ideal for the specialized care of patients requiring clinical assessment and guidance, and was not patient-centric for care delivery (see Figure 1). The close proximity between the clinical and administrative staff led to blurred role definitions, in that MAs often provided backup to the administrative team by doing tasks that did not require clinical competency or medical decision-making: faxing documents, handling medical record requests and leave of absence paperwork, covering the check-in and checkout processes, and scanning documents into the patient medical record.
Due to their close proximity, many MAs also performed duties of a PCC, which were more administrative than clinical.
In June 2015, the office was redesigned to increase efficiency and clinical workflows (see Figure 2). As part of this process, RNs, MAs and PCCs worked with practice leadership to review the details of their job descriptions and expectations, and redefine the clinical roles of the team with more clarity. Tasks that were administrative and did not require clinical expertise were better performed by front-end users. Those tasks were systematically identified and reassigned to PCCs. MAs continued to room patients but eliminated the administrative responsibilities of scanning, answering calls and scheduling appointments, which were shifted back to the PCCs.
Workstations were renovated so that each MA was placed with an RN in the central area of the office. This workspace, referred to as the “clinical fishbowl,” has been identified as “one-stop shopping” for physicians and advanced providers looking for RN or MA help, making workflows more efficient. Clinical staff members were empowered to refer administrative responsibilities to PCCs in the front office. This change provided more time for clinical support staff to complete tasks that were within their scope and that were more professionally satisfying. For example, nurses provided pre-operative patient education and nurse office visits, which resulted in increased patient volume and revenue. This also allocated time to complete classes and required competencies for their clinical practice and development.
When expectations are clear, responsible parties are held to duties required by their certification or license, and roles are physically arranged in a space that encourages collaborative learning, coaching and mentoring. The result is an increase in employee engagement scores and increased patient volume and revenue.
Shane served for six years in the Marine Corps, three providing security for the communications of the President of the United States and three as an operator within a Recon unit. With degrees in Business Administration and Health Sciences as well as an MBA in Operations Management and Strategic Planning, Shane has spent almost 15 years in healthcare management, both in large systems as well as private clinics. Currently Shane is the Administrator of Klasinski Clinic Orthopaedics, a division of Orthopaedic Centers of Wisconsin.
Join us June 12 for a Newsmaker Event with Mayo Clinic Vice President Dr. Bobbie Gostout. As the leader of Mayo Clinic Health System, Gostout oversees the organization’s hospitals in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa.
11:45 a.m. -1:00 p.m.
Wisconsin continues to grapple with the opioid epidemic. Emergency departments in the state saw suspected opioid overdoses more than double between July 2016 and last September, according to recent federal data. While Wisconsin has taken steps to fight the crisis, more work remains. A Wisconsin Health News panel will take a closer look at the challenges facing those seeking treatment and how to boost access.
Submitted by Tom Ludwig, RN, FACMPE, WMGMA ACMPE Forum Rep
Congratulations to Larry Sobal from Menasha – Wisconsin’s newest FACMPE!
Congratulations to the following MGMA members from Wisconsin who recently attained Certified status:
New Certification Requirements!
The requirements for becoming certified are changing next year. Current requirements that carry over are that you must have two years of healthcare experience and be a MGMA member. As of January 1, 2019, you must also hold a bachelor’s degree or have 120 hours of college credit. Once you apply for certification, you will have THREE years from your application date to become certified.
If you are already certified, or if you become certified by December 31, 2018, you will NOT be required to have the degree or the college credits. If that is your situation, there is still time! First, if you are not already a national MGMA member, you can purchase MGMA membership plus the board certification application (MMBCMPE) in one bundle and save $50!
Certification Study Group
A national live web-based study group is scheduled to begin in May. You can register for this free webinar series through the MGMA Store at MGMA.org.
Upcoming Exam Dates:
June 9-23, 2018: Exam Registration Apr. 23- May 7, 2018
Sept. 8-22, 2018: Exam Registration July 23- Aug. 7, 2018
Dec. 1-15, 2018: Exam Registration Oct. 22- Nov. 6, 2018
Fellowship Program Enhancements
There will be several enhancements to the Fellowship program effective January 2019. These enhancements affect the following areas:
Information on the changes can be found on the MGMA web site at https://www.mgma.com/2019-fellowship-program-enhancements.
Mark your calendars for April 26th and May 17th for the Fellowship Workshop Series presented by Lee Ann H. Webster, FACMPE and Nina Chavez, FACMPE. Registration will open soon for the live webinars.
Session 1 – ACMPE Fellowship: Requirements and the Submission Process
Session 2 – Developing a Fellowship Manuscript or Business Plan
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at email@example.com.
Submitted by Dean Cravillion, Payer Committee Co-Chair
On March 19, the WMGMA held its first quarterly Payer Forum meeting of 2018 at UW Health in Madison. Attendees of the meeting included payers and WMGMA members. This meeting was the first with a new format that changed to include all payers to meet in-person in the morning session for Q&A, and payers were welcomed to stay for lunch.
Submit questions for the June meeting and register to attend here.
Wisconsin Medical Management Group Association563 Carter Court, Suite B, Kimberly, WI 54136920-560-5621 / 800-762-8968WMGMA@Badgerbay.co
MissionTo be a resource for information, education, networking, and advocacy opportunities for all medical group management professionals.