Best Practices for Negotiation Prep

How should your organization prepare for negotiations and contract conversations with physicians and groups? Here are some best practices to integrate into your preparation strategy.

Do your research.

Before starting any sort of negotiations, have a good idea of what the market ranges of payment for the specialty and service in question. When entering into negotiations, you should have a good idea of how your institution and the physician compare to the “typical” provider.

Consider agreement scope.

All positions are not created equal and should not be considered equal when determining payment. Consider the scope of what is included in the agreement.

Acknowledge the nuances of the situation.

Situational details of the position (intensity of workload, exclusivity) or of the hospital (payer mix, trauma status, hospital size) may distinguish a contract from other contracts.

Identify where you can compromise.

Before you begin negotiations with the physician or group, discuss internally what you are willing and able to pay and where you can compromise to reach an agreement.

Consider alternatives.

Discussing alternative approaches can often yield savings or more efficient ways to achieve the same objectives. It can also open the door for both your organization and the physician to discuss their challenges and needs.

Document, document, document.

One of the most important aspects of compliance and protecting your organization is thorough documentation. Always air on the side of more rather than fewer supporting documents about how and why you reached the conclusion.

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