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  • Preparing for the Future of Ophthalmology

    Are you choosing a practice or considering another opportunity?

    Academic and private practices don’t look like what they used to anymore. The young ophthalmologist going into the work force today has a lot to consider when starting and building a practice. Private equities are consuming practices and academic practices are looking more like private practices with productivity models focused on work RVUs.

    How can you use the benefits of the IRIS® Registry, public patient surveys, and cash-based services for practice improvement? This symposium had six expert tips to be successful despite the changes coming ahead.

    1. Despite academics becoming more productivity-based, it is still the best environment for innovation, training, and leading.
    2. Solo practice has so many benefits.  To be successful, one must have a business plan and understand the players in your area before you build.
    3. When considering private equity practice, be sure to know their mission statement and culture since there is so much variability amongst firms.
    4. If you aren’t measuring it, you can’t improve it. The IRIS Registry allows you to access  your practice data outcomes to improve quality of care and improve clinical research.
    5. Cash-based services and products should be offered only if it meets an unmet need for your patients. In order to do this, you need a strong team that is on the same page with excellent communication and counseling to patients.
    6. Public ratings and patient surveys can be an informative tool for behavior modification for physicians who receive low ratings. Consider being observed in clinic for tips to be successful in implementing change.

    All speakers recommended YOs first decide what your goals are out of a practice. Solo, academic and private equity practices each have its own advantages and disadvantages.

    Teaching and innovation are best done at an academic center and solo practice gives you autonomy in patient care while freeing up time to pursue other passions in life.  Private equity firms can be great to be part of a large group but due diligence is needed to find the right “match.” Both communication and education play a vital role with developing good relationships with referrals and loyalty from patients.