Headed to the Spring UCAOA Convention wondering: How can I boost my urgent care revenue? Am I picking the right administrative team for my urgent care center? What are the easiest ways to reverse poor financial performance at my clinic?

Practice Velocity experts will address these questions and more in Orlando later this month during teaching sessions at the Spring Urgent Care Association of America Convention.

David Stern, MD, CPC, will present “10 Strategies for Improving Center Financial Performance” (11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on April 17). With decades of urgent care experience, the Practice Velocity CEO will give tips for getting your urgent care center on the path to success. He will offer practical advice to improve clinic operations today and position for future success.

One strategy: credit card pre-authorization to help with patient collections.

“Although pre-authorization is a new concept in healthcare, when the front desk staff explains to patients that they have a deductible or co-insurance and must provide a credit care to cover the charges that they will be responsible for, most patients understand and agree,” Dr. Stern said. “This practice sets the expectation that the patient will be responsible for some portion of the fees, but it doesn’t let payment at the time of service stand in the way of immediate treatment.”

Payer contracting, coding and collections practices, staffing models, technology, and marketing will be discussed at Dr. Stern’s session on “Isolating and Solving Center Performance Issues” (1:30-2:30 p.m. on April 17). He’ll walk attendees through financial data from three struggling urgent care centers to offer tips for turning around an urgent care center’s performance.

Startup

In the earliest days of an urgent care startup, there are many variables to consider: site selection, community relationships, and whether or not to offer ancillary services.

Alan Ayers, MBA, MAcc, Vice President of Strategic Initiatives for Practice Velocity, will present “Site Selection” (9:45-10:45 a.m. on April 17) as part of the Clinic Startup Primer track. He will also discuss “Referral Relationships with Primary Care and Specialists” (1:15-2:15 p.m. on April 19) to help providers looking to build community inroads for their urgent care centers.

“The main concern the primary care provider is going to have is that the urgent care is going to steal their patients,” Ayers said. “You should establish trust by defining the scope of the urgent care center, that it really is episodic and not looking to treat chronic conditions.”

Not only can urgent care provide a weekend and after-hours solution for the PCP’s patients, but PCPs can benefit as urgent care refers patients who need longitudinal care. Ayers suggests that providers meet face to face with primary care physicians and specialists in the community to start, then follow up to establish the relationship.

Services

Bonnie Peterson, BSN, Vice President of Operations for Urgent Care Consultants, will present “Integration of Urgent Care and Occupational Medicine” (11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. on April 18).

Peterson’s session will offer everything from equipment and office design advice to certification needs to marketing ideas. She will outline the growth strategies you should consider for seamlessly adding occupational medicine services.

Occupational medicine services can be a real asset at your urgent care center,” she said. “But you need to first consider client needs, service protocol, and a sales and marketing strategy that would ensure success at your facility.”

Finances/Operations

Additionally, Logan McCall, CEO for ZipClinic Urgent Care Centers, a Practice Velocity partner, will present “Understanding your Financials” (10:15-11:15 a.m. on April 17), and then “Taking the Administrative Team to the Next Level” (2:45-3:45 p.m. on April 17).

The financials session will teach attendees about the importance of maintaining a “performance scorecard” to identify challenges and opportunities in urgent care.

“In order to survive and thrive long term, urgent care centers must be financially sound,” McCall said. “This entails having a clear understanding of how revenue is generated, control over day-to-day expenses, keeping a sharp eye on cash, and having a strategy for using debt and equity to enable future growth.”