The Specialist Advantage


Procedure-dependent specialists are sensing the instability of their referral streams as they see primary care services fragment.


Though clearly illegal, primes are being subtley coerced  by their employers into keeping their specialty referrals inside their own health systems.


Without a robust primary care workforce within their organization, specialists are forced to rely on outside marketing to bring in patients directly.


And I’ve yet to meet one specialist division that’s satisfied it can succeed on direct marketing alone.


Fortunately, as a specialist at the top of your field, you have a secret weapon.


Your own skill.


If you’re accepting one or more Medicare Advantage plans, reach out to your allied primes—even ones outside your health system.


Find the ones with financial skin in the game.


Make them see the asset you can be within their Medicare Advantage panel.


Come armed with data about your effectiveness and efficiency. Come with workflows to smooth the referral processes—including one for a “needs to be seen right now” path.  Create a system for continued collaboration between administrative staffs, one with routine reinforcement and quality control among the clinical leadership.



Emphasize how only you, among all the available specialist options, “get it”—and are there to help.



Fix their problem—outsized costs from inefficient procedure-heavy specialty care and you’ll be rewarded.



Demonstrate your value, stabilize your referral stream.



And watch how your new value-based relationships amplify your fee-for-service referrals as well.






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