Chronic Disease Management (CDM) plays a massive role in many practice’s operations and procedures for patient care. CDM plays a large part in providing outstanding patient care to your community. It also, at times can make up 20 – 40%+ of a practice’s billings. Chronic conditions are increasingly common in Australia. Across local areas, 34-50% of GP consultations involve the active management of one or more chronic conditions.
At Cubiko, our product focuses on your CDM billings. Our metrics provide insights into how you can increase your CDM billings and our data and optimisation metrics can help you continue to provide outstanding patient care.
I’ve spoken to general practitioners, practice managers and nurses around the country to come up with four steps you can take to increase your CDM billings.
1. Set a baseline
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2. Create a process
To create reoccurring behaviours in your practice we need to create a process. One process that I’ve used previously in my practice is:
- Identify potentially eligible patients
- Pre-screen those patients where appropriate
- Have a doctor apply clinical judgement for a GPMP
- Involve the broader care team with nurses and specialists if suitable for that patient’s care plan
- Book in follow up appointments for that patient in advance for continuity of care, if appropriate
The above process isn’t the only process that can be used to implement a solid Chronic Disease Management program in your practice. See where you can include technology solutions in your approach. For instance, Better Consult provides pre-screening of patients, leading to finding earlier signs of chronic diseases such as diabetes. Pre-emptive patient care of chronic diseases such as diabetes can help you make a difference in your community.
As a technology solution, Cubiko can provide you with a list of potentially eligible patients for all item numbers listed under step 1. Practices use these metrics to increase billings and help them provide exceptional patient care.
Want to increase CDM billings with Cubiko?
3. Track your performance
It is important to track our performance as we make changes within our business. This helps us monitor how we are performing and, helps us determine if our strategies are helping us meet our overall goal. When monitoring the performance of our CDM billings we look at two critical numbers:
- Doctor billings per hour
- Percentage of billings that are CDM billings
Doctor billings per hour
Doctor billings per hour can be a simple formula. Look at the total billings for that day, period, and how many hours that doctor was contracted. Looking at contracted hours or total available time for that doctor is simple but can often misrepresent the data.
At Cubiko, we look at Doctor billings per Consulting hour. For this formula, we look at billings in the same vein as above, the total billings for that doctor over a given period. The time metric, Consulting hours is where the formula differs.
Consulting hours is the total time that practitioner spent with patients. We take away any Did Not Attends (DNAs) and non-patient-facing appointments (e.g. staff meetings). This equates to the time spent with patients.
When looking at Doctor billings per Consulting hour, we’re looking at using more of the MBS in the allocated time we have with patients. This helps cater to the value of CDM billings in your practice, as now we’re not looking at an average appointment length of 45 minutes and trying to find out billings per appointment. But we’re comparing a practitioner whether they do an average of 15-minute appointments or average 45-minute appointments evenly.
Percentage of billings that are CDM billings
For the CDM billings as a percent of your total billings, the formula is CDM billings over a given period, divided by the total billings of that period. I covered this in step one above of what item numbers we include in CDM billings. I’ll note that some practices specify different item numbers for their CDM billings.The main point is less about what item numbers you bill and more about keeping it consistent.
Measuring the percentage of billings that are CDM billings across each of your doctors is excellent. It can help drive the team and assist you as the practice to provide support to your doctors. For instance, the practitioner with a lower percentage of CDM billings may benefit from an education session from your CDM nurse. Or increased guidance from senior practitioner on how they can incorporate CDM billings where appropriate with their patients.
4. Empower the team
Running a successful practice requires a team. We can use data and new initiatives to bring the team along on the journey. Use these goals and targets to empower your team. Data and analysis should not be a stick, but be helpful to show you where to focus your efforts.
Bring all three of the previous steps together to help empower your team. Communicate the baseline to your team, help them understand how the practice is currently performing. Hold a staff meeting to discuss the process, take in feedback and ensure it’s a process that will work with your team. Finally, keep them updated on the performance and how CDM billings are going in your practice.