Blog | Wednesday, September 11, 2013

QD: News Every Day--IT costs climbed in past four years, as did business support staff demands

Information technology costs rose to more than $19,000 per physician from 2008 to 2012, a practice survey found.

Since 2008, medical practices’ annual expenditures per full-time-equivalent physician for information technology costs climbed nearly 28%, from a median of more than $15,000 in 2008 to more than 19,000 in 2012, according to the MGMA Cost Survey Report: 2013 Report Based on 2012 Data.

Physician practices also reported increases in median staffing costs after adding business operations, clinical, and ancillary support professionals to the practice, MGMA reported in a press release. Total business operations staff per 10,000 patients increased 8.7% since 2011, from 6.56% to 7.13%. MGMA sources suggested that physician practices and hospitals are investing in trained and certified staff to manage physician services.

Staff costs are rising as additional staff manage operations and a complex regulatory environment. Increased staffing costs may have also been incurred as practices seek to improve their patients’ experience and satisfaction with their visits.

The report features data from more than 2,400 groups and includes data categorized by specialty, organization ownership, and geographic section. The report also features data on staffing ratios, medical revenue, total operating costs, and accounts receivable.