Key Strategies on the Road to Recovery
COVID-19 continues to have a devasting impact on the overall healthcare ecosystem. While the stories of personal protective equipment (PPE) shortages and the need for additional hospital capacity in pandemic hot spots are widespread, there is another side of the impact that has been less publicized.
Seemingly overnight, health systems and physician groups have experienced drastic volume decreases caused by statemandated stay-at-home orders, mandatory cancellations of all elective procedures, and patients canceling or delaying nonurgent visits and procedures to avoid potential exposure to COVID-19. In response, healthcare organizations are making swift and often painful decisions to aggressively manage expenses, including furloughing clinical (mostly ambulatory, outpatient, and procedural) and nonclinical staff, reducing executive pay, and stopping retirement
contributions or bonuses.
According to a Medical Group Management Association survey, medical groups have experienced a reduction of 55% of revenue and 60% of patient volume since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis. Similar to the range of geographical impacts of COVID-19, Guidehouse’s experience is that medical groups are seeing a range of impacts to their volume and business based on specialties:
As independent or health system-owned medical groups prepare to respond to the current crisis and the ongoing challenges that will be present over the coming months, we recommend that they consider organizing their actions into the following four “R” phases: