Practice management in GP and specialist practices: Prepared for digitisation with the Dash-, Target- and Success-boards.

Data, facts and instruments on the German health system

What it’s all about

There is already no way around the digitisation of work in medical practices in the short term. But the benefits of the transformation only come to fruition if the practice management it encounters also functions smoothly. But this is only the case in very few practices.

The practice management benchmarking method makes it possible to quantitatively record and visually depict the performance status of the complex structure of practice management. The resulting dashboard offers GPs and specialists the possibility of a precise control and orientation of their practice work oriented towards best practice standards.

Quickly to optimised practice management

Before processes are digitised, they need to be analysed and optimised to ensure that it is clear, efficient and makes sense. If the process is already working poorly, it can be difficult to simply digitise it in its existing form, as this will further reinforce inefficient ways of working. The easiest way to do this is to conduct practice management benchmarking. This means comparing the condition of the entire practice management of a practice operation as well as the effects achieved through this with two reference standards, the professional group standard and the best practice standard; the information from the quality management does not help here. At the same time, the comparison generates suggestions for solutions to identified deviations that limit the performance of the practice management.

The Benchmarking Dashboard helps

The benchmarking dashboard is the central visual representation of the determined key performance indicators (KPI), the „laboratory values“ of practice management, and shows the practice management performance of a medical practice at a glance. It contains all relevant indicators and indicates the performance status of the individual action areas via four colour categories. The associated expertise conveys the related qualitative assessments and, if necessary, indicates the concrete changes required.

Its advantages:

  • Transparency: The dashboard offers a condensation of the complex management system of a medical practice, making it accessible for adjustments and targeted control in the first place.
  • Clarity: The visual summary of data and enable the doctor to grasp and understand at a glance the most important indicators of his practice management in their status and interaction.
  • Timeliness: It can be updated with new data at any time, enabling a quick response to changes and trends.
  • Individuality: The dashboard is adapted to the specific needs of the user, as it displays only the relevant key figures.
  • Decision support: The business comparison dashboard supports quick and informed decision making.
  • Collaboration: The data improves communication and thereby collaboration within a team by giving all stakeholders an overview of the status and development opportunities of the work.

Targeted analysis, optimisation and control

Using these forms of visualisation, a KPI status report in dashboard form corresponds to a kind of MRI image of the practice work and its results.

The benchmarking dashboard is also a practice development tool:

  • the dashboard in its initial form serves as a status report,
  • from it, goals for the development of practice management can be developed and presented in the form of a target board,
  • with the help of a follow-up survey, usually after a year, a new status is ascertained and the resulting indicators are again presented in dashboard form, which now functions as a success board when the values actually achieved are compared with the daily board.

Further information

In this way, an optimal working situation can be created not only for digitalisation. The benchmarking technique has a kind of Swiss-knife function for all concerns and situations of a practice. How it works and what it does in detail is described in the current publication: „Benchmarking practice management for general practitioners and specialists – method, application and benefits“.