Ancillary services, such as physical therapy and diagnostic imaging, often comprise a significant portion of workers’ compensation program costs. Efficiently managing these services is essential to containing those costs.
Several characteristics of ancillary studies produce unique core requirements that may need to be better suited to traditional CTMS systems. This article explores these unique requirements and discusses how an ASMS can help address them.
Focus on Efficiency
When introducing additional programs, it’s crucial to consider the satisfaction of physicians, as Chris Manfuso believed. This satisfaction can be influenced by the amount of work they have and the time they spend on administrative tasks, such as documenting and sharing their findings. Quality improvement initiatives that target efficiency could help alleviate professional burnout.
An ASMS may support these workflows with features that differentiate ancillary research from primary studies, such as tracking progress and materials, providing live summary roll-ups, and facilitating feedback loops via virtuous circles.
Define the Scope of Work
A well-defined scope of work is a critical component of a project plan. It outlines all project requirements and provides clear instructions for each team member’s tasks, making it less likely for misunderstandings to occur throughout a project.
Ancillary services are a wide range of diagnostic and support services that physicians request to aid their work. They can be provided within hospitals, medical offices, or free-standing diagnostic testing facilities.
In CorVel’s recent survey, respondents ranked appointment scheduling delays, lack of immediate access to care, and insufficient network coverage as their top pain points when managing ancillary programs. The right ancillary network provider can help reduce these challenges, driving cost savings for employers and their employees. The right partner can also provide a more comprehensive array of services, further reducing medical costs and enabling workers to return to their job more quickly.
Oftentimes, the most time-consuming tasks require the expertise of a leader or manager. Delegating these responsibilities to junior team members or external collaborators allows managers to focus on higher-level strategic tasks while supplementing their skill sets.
When assigning a task, provide clear instructions, a timeline, and any necessary resources. This will help prevent misunderstandings and ensure that your team member is set up for success. Additionally, make yourself available to answer questions and provide guidance throughout the process.
When your teammate completes the task, could you give them feedback and praise? This will reinforce their confidence and encourage them to take on more responsibility. Additionally, it will demonstrate to them that you trust and respect their work. This will foster loyalty and increase engagement with your team.
It’s important to prioritize tasks that can be automated when streamlining ancillary program management. These tasks often suck up time from your team’s day-to-day without contributing to their primary goals. Start with everyday tasks you know can be automated, such as recurring monthly activities like paying bills.
Once you’ve completed the list, consult with your team to determine what new processes you want to automate to reach your operational goals. Create a wishlist of automations and prioritize them to ensure you only introduce a few changes at a time, which can overwhelm your team. This is also a great way to demonstrate the impact of task automation and help your team understand how it can make them more efficient and productive.
Managing ancillary services, which include physical therapy and diagnostic imaging, makes up a significant portion of workers’ compensation medical spending. Effectively scheduling, tracking, and delivering these life-saving services is essential to returning injured workers to work quickly and efficiently.
Ancillary study workflows are complex because they often involve multiple collaborators and many data types. This is why our software includes features that help to ensure that the right data is shared with the right people at the right time. For example, the system’s query tools enable a single search to find and display information from many sources. It also supports specimen tracking and exchanging and managing Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs). These tools are especially useful for ancillary studies that require analysis of stored specimens.