PLANNING FOR THE NEW YEAR – Value, Comp and the Consumer

COVID-19 has changed the world. We cannot thank our health care providers enough! The demands and difficulties of 2020 have highlighted the need for planning and flexibility.  The restrictions on services, surgeries, and re-openings during 2020 necessitates that most health care providers focus their efforts on patient acquisition, economic impacts, and patient safety.

If you’re running thin based on your 2020 experiences, it would be prudent to focus on three main topics as 2021 approaches:  value, compensation, and the consumer.


  • Take time to read the new Stark law definitions and CMS’ clarifications for the terms ‘fair market value’ and ‘commercial reasonableness.’  There are now value based care exceptions for full risk arrangements and meaningful downside risk arrangements.  These rules take effect on January 19, 2021 (with one exception related to group practice compensation).
  • If you entered into value-based arrangements or joined a clinically integrated network, walk back through the details.
  • Re-read your contracts that require professional or administrative services and time to ensure there is value to both parties regardless of whether the team is training residents, covering services, or serving as medical director.


  • Rethink compensation cuts, productivity pay, CME allowance, travel reimbursement, on-call payments, and total cash compensation. Update comp plans and renegotiate employment agreements.
  • Plan to spend a little extra time to understand the survey data that your team uses for setting or checking annual numbers. Be sure you estimate how the increases to E&M levels will impact your compensation structure and overall budget.


  • Patient safety, consumer confidence, convenient access, training for new technologies and access to data and portals are some of the most prominent consumer topics. Keep the patient and potential patient at the forefront as your team manages new processes, relationships, suppliers, and contracts.

If you want to discuss the application of these topics to your practice or organization, we will gladly serve as a sounding board.

As you review the aforementioned documents and consider revisions, plan to spend time teaching the entire team about the need for updates.  Transparency with all providers involved is essential, including candid communications about relationships, partners, expenses, volumes, compensation tiers and strategic planning.

Let us know how we can help.

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