FEBRUARY 1, 2017
Patients have a lot of choices when selecting a physician, especially in a large metro area such as North Texas. In the four largest counties of the Metroplex – Tarrant, Dallas, Collin and Denton – there are more than 13,000 physicians in practice today.
Just as patients have options when choosing a doctor, physicians have some decisions to make when it comes to deciding how they want to establish their practice. Some physicians choose to be completely autonomous and establish their own practice, while others opt to join a large healthcare system, anchored by a major hospital.
There are drawbacks to both of these models, however. For the independent physician who has his or her own practice, there is no administrative support to handle time-consuming and often complicated chores such as billing, compliance, negotiating with insurance companies, payroll, etc. These administrative tasks can quickly eat into the physician’s time, reducing time available to see patients.
Conversely, a hospital will generally handle many of these functions for its physicians. The downside, however, is that being tied to one large hospital system can severely limit a physician’s autonomy. For example, the physician may be restricted when referring patients to specialists. Similarly, if the patient requires surgery or a procedure, the patient and physician may not be able to choose where the procedure will take place.
Texas Health Care offers physicians a different model. Its physicians are members, not employees – they work only for themselves. Physicians are able to take advantage of the comprehensive administrative support that Texas Health Care provides for all of its members. In addition, all physicians – even the newest members – have an equal say in the governance of the group.
Comprehensive Administrative Support
By standardizing and sharing many administrative elements of the business of medicine that do not directly impact patient care, Texas Health Care physicians are able to spend more time with their patients, delivering high-quality and personalized care. Texas Health Care physicians retain complete autonomy in their practices, both enhancing patient care and the professional satisfaction of the physician.
Texas Health Care coordinates most business office functions and other services through a central business office, including contracting, accounting, human resources, medical malpractice insurance, credentialing, government compliance and ancillary services. By streamlining and standardizing the elements of medical practice that do not impact patient care, Texas Health Care physicians are able to spend time with those who need them the most – their patients.
“Joining Texas Health Care is a great decision,” says Dr. Robert Reddix, Jr, an Orthopedic Surgeon. “Texas Health Care enables me to maximize the time I spend with patients and minimize the time I have to spend on administrative and compliance matters.”
Dr. Kathleen Cammack, an Obstetrician and Gynecologist, agrees. “The professional support team at Texas Health Care, from billing to human resources to the practice consultants, provide expert support that helps me do my job better as a physician and contributes to the overall care we provide our patients.”
Technology & Infrastructure
Texas Health Care physicians were early adopters of electronic health records, achieving a “meaningful use” designation from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in 2011. Texas Health Care physicians have access to NextGen Healthcare Information Systems’ electronic health record software and patients can utilize NextGen’s Patient Portal, a secure online platform in which they can schedule appointments, view health care reminders, request prescription refills, view lab results and more.
Texas Health Care also owns and operates a physical therapy service exclusively for its physician members and patients.
Contracts with Leading Insurers
Texas Health Care is included in all of the major insurance networks in North Texas. The group is fully contracted with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas, United Health Care, Aetna, Cigna, as well as other North Texas insurers. “The fact Texas Health Care is contracted with all of the major health insurance companies in our region has been a key factor in helping me to grow my patient base,” says Dr. Tahir Ali, an Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialist.
More Choices in Hospitals
Since Texas Health Care is not tied to any particular hospital system, its physician members are not limited in the hospitals they can work in. Texas Health Care has physicians who participate with Baylor Scott & White, Texas Health Resources, Medical Plaza, Methodist Mansfield, John Peter Smith and others. “Having the freedom to pursue privileges at any hospital I want was a big plus for me,” explains Dr. Domingo Tan, a General Surgeon. “That flexibility provides better treatment options and more convenience for my patients.”
“One of the great things about being part of a group that has no outside ownership and in which all members have an equal voice is that it empowers us to provide leadership and direction for the entire organization,” says Dr. Harshal Broker, a Vascular Surgeon. “Texas Health Care has a number of physician-led committees that work to support all of our members, grow the organization and see that we are providing the best care for our patients. Even the newest members have the opportunity – and are encouraged – to participate on a committee.”
New Partnership Creates New Possibilities
Last year, the doctors of Texas Health Care partnered with Privia Medical Group – North Texas. Privia Medical Group is known for helping its physicians grow their practices while providing a sustained focus on patient wellness. The Privia partnership will be valuable to Texas Health Care physicians as the health care industry continues to move from the fee-for-service model to values-based reimbursement.
Work with Some of the Best
Texas Health Care physicians are routinely recognized as some of the best in their fields. The group has physicians in 35 specialty areas and its members have received a number of awards and honors. For example, each year dozens of Texas Health Care physicians are honored as “Top Doctors” in Fort Worth, Texas: The Magazine’s annual medical issue.
Whether you are a new physician looking to start your practice in North Texas or an experienced doctor looking for a new model for your practice, Texas Health Care would love to talk with you. Contact Corey Harriman for more information.