August 1998 Bulletin

Residents to see business side of practice

Teleconference to examine practice management techniques

Medical school residents learn about the clinical aspects of their profession, but often lack formal training on practice management or contract negotiations.

"When they get to the business side of practice, they're lost and unprepared," says David R. Mauerhan, MD, section chief of adult reconstruction, Carolinas Medical Center Orthopaedic Residency Program, Charlotte, N.C.

To address this and other challenging issues in the health care marketplace, the Specialty Societies Care Coalition will present "First Practice: Strategies for Success," its first live, interactive video teleconference for residents, fellows in training and new practitioners on September 19, 1998.

Funding for this first joint specialty educational venture will be provided by the members of the Specialty Societies Care Coalition: the Academy, American Academy of Dermatology, American Academy of Ophthalmology, American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, American College of Cardiology, American Urological Association, the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons and Society of Thoracic Surgeons.

The two-hour teleconference will be led by a panel of physicians and practice management experts and touch on the impact of managed care on career opportunities for young orthopaedic surgeons, examine strategies for pursuing a practice and effectively negotiating a service contract and help first-time practitioners recognize essential practice management system tools.

The target audience is approximately 13,000 viewers at 150 host sites which include medical centers, hospitals, health organizations, clinics and residency training programs located across the country. Some of the sites are the University of Minnesota, University of Rochester; and Cullen Eye Institute, Houston, Texas.

Dr. Mauerhan, a panel member who will discuss various practice management strategies, says, "Although these are different specialties treating different parts of the human anatomy in different disease states, when it comes to the business of medicine, they all have to do the same things related to practice management and negotiating managed care contracts."

The value of this live telecast program is clear, says Dan M. Spengler, MD, a member of the Academy's physician advisory committee for the coalition, and professor and chairman of the department of orthopaedics and rehabilitation, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tenn., "It allows much faster dissemination of information," Dr. Spengler says. "If used diligently, in the future, information could be spread quickly and throughout the residency programs. Obviously, it raises the bar of education."

Dr. Mauerhan says the educational program is really a "one-stop shopping," excursion. "This does not involve very much travel, it's very inexpensive, time efficient and convenient."

To register or find a host site location, contact the Viewer Registration Desk at (773) 622-5647 weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central Daylight Time. Institutions interested in hosting the broadcast can call (888) 828-5354, during the same hours.

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