Remember that kid in your high school algebra class? You know the one. He was always mumbling about how he was never going to use algebra so why should he have to learn it.
Let’s hope he’s not a neurologist today, because he’d have a heck of a time managing his practice. Take away the obvious utility of math in medicine and just look at what you have to do to keep your business running and profitable. You have to consider:
- Time it takes to see a patient or do a procedure,
- Time it takes to complete the EHR for that visit or procedure,
- Amount you can charge for the visit or procedure,
- Amount Medicare reimburses for that visit or procedure, and
- Cost to you for supplies for that visit or procedure.
You have to figure that out for each type of visit and procedure and then structure your practice around optimizing both patient care and profit. They should have had that problem on the MCAT.
You may not keep these calculations on spreadsheets for each different set of scenarios, but this is the mental algebra that influences what you will and won’t do as a neurologist. And every time Medicare changes their reimbursements (often), you have to recalculate.
This has presented quite the conundrum for neurologists who want to perform nerve conduction studies (NCS) in their offices. Performing in-office NCS gives you control of the procedure and provides immediate results. Plus, it keeps your patient from having to go somewhere else for their care.
But Medicare reimbursements for nerve conduction studies are notoriously low, and the procedure is time-consuming. Neurologists who use reusable hook-ups spend an unnecessarily long time cleaning off gel, reapplying gel, and repositioning and re-taping the hook-ups. That time can eat right through your Medicare reimbursements by limiting the number of patients you see each day.
For those who have moved to disposable electrodes, the cost can add up quickly because so many electrodes are required for each test. That gobbles up reimbursements, too.
At Ambu, we pulled out our calculators and in an effort to optimize time and money for neurologists performing in-office NCS. The Neuroline 715 electrode is a repositionable electrode that may limit time spent performing NCS in two primary ways:
First, there is no need for gel. The skin-friendly solid gel used for the 715 can be repositioned. This cuts down on the mess and cleanup time associated with a standard reusable sensor.
Second, the sensor area is transparent, allowing for precise placement. There is no need to spend time wrapping fingers to be sure the sensory area is captured.
These features allow Neuroline 715 sensors to be repositioned quickly with no mess and little waste. This can save precious time for you and your patients. And with nerve conduction studies, the simplest formula still remains applicable.
Time equals money.
Would you like to speak with one of our representatives about ideas for maximizing your profits through time-saving products? Please get in touch.