Pinnacle Blog

  • Smart Investing in a Down Economy

    Real Estate opportunities can be CORE in helping physicians build equity and maintain control

    Sometimes the best opportunities come during the worst of times.  Professionals, especially those in the medical field, are taking advantage of real estate market conditions with the intentions of reaping future benefits.  According to Allen Dreher, Director of CORE, LLC, it takes knowledge, understanding of the market and the skill to take full advantage of these opportunities.

    When one firm walked into their landlord’s office to negotiate a new lease and subsequently discovered that a renewal would result in a significant price increase, they switched into purchase mode.

    “That was the only push we needed,” said Jim Miles, attorney at Miles & Peters, as he explained that for years he had observed how his clients’ profit more from real estate than any other investment.

    The timing was January of 2009, the beginning of the ‘Great Recession’, where potential buyers had opportunity to rise to the occasion of falling of interest rates.  Instead of signing a new lease, the firm followed the signs of the time and set out to stake their claim in the real estate world.

    Fred Simmons, currently Chief Executive Officer of Clearwater Cardiovascular and Interventional Consultants, experienced a similar buying opportunity when he served as an Executive Director at a previous practice.  After the real estate downturn of the late 80s, his then practice was able to secure and buy a piece of distressed property next to their parent hospital.

    “We were able to pick it up when commercial real estate was in the tanks,” said Simmons.  He viewed the four story building as an investment.  “After four or five years, the real estate market picked up again and we sold it for a good profit.”

    Though buying in a weak market was his first experience, Simmons knows what a good investment looks like; and it comes in various sizes, spaces and floors.  He continues to buy throughout changing real estate trends and continues to share his knowledge with others in his profession.

    “Physicians always have a concern that they are paying too much,” said Simmons in relation to leasing, especially when doctors lease from hospitals.  He additionally explained that physicians have a better opportunity at gaining during any real estate period.  Though commercial real estate has been hit hard, he continued, “healthcare real estate has maintained its value.”

    Although buying may seem tempting, making the transition from renter to owner is a daunting task for some physicians.  The Pinnacle Group, recognized mostly for its role in healthcare consulting, has recently expanded its frontier with CORE, LLC to fit the needs of physicians and other professionals looking to capitalize on owning their office space rather than rent long-term.

    David White, Executive Director of Pinnacle Healthcare Consulting explained, “In an industry where so many physicians are making less money, it can be reassuring to know property ownership in a practice is a stable investment with  more operational control.  However, sometimes it is hard to know where to begin and how to  find the right space answers to keep things moving forward and manage the budget,” said White.

    While good timing can be the extra push for prospective buyers, one factor that can be overlooked-time investment.  Miles said that he and his partner spent on average five to ten hours per week on research, design and build-out of their property.

    Sometimes even the best laid plans can get complicated and many little items can become large without the proper remedy.  Time can literally mean money when one is simultaneously managing a business and buy/building out property.

    Simmons suggested that unless there is someone in the practice who is familiar with the processes, seeking professional help may be a beneficial option and that use of a consultant would help with the issues a practice may not fully understand.

    Dreher is one such individual who enjoys taking the reigns and managing these real estate puzzles.  CORE can be viewed as a boutique service where physicians can pick and choose the services they need. He went on to explain that CORE is one of the few services available that coordinates strong, experienced resources to assist clients achieve a successful, efficient outcome.  The services assist in mapping out a turnkey solution–from planning, to site selection, licensing issues, financing and build-out.

    “I think it helps immensely when you have a quarterback that can work with all of the individual players and get them to work together to find solutions when everyday problems arise,” said Dreher.  To request information, please contact Allen Dreher of CORE at 303.378.5567 or email to adreher@pinnaclegrouphc.com.

    Successful relocation and a future real estate investment portfolio begins with that first step, a call to someone who can assist in developing your roadmap to success. – Kimberly Berkey

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  • William Johnson Joins The Pinnacle Group as Executive Director, Financial Operations

    The Pinnacle Group is excited to extend a warm welcome to Mr. William D. Johnson, CPA, MBA, a recent addition to the Pinnacle Team as Executive Director of Financial Operations.

    The Pinnacle Group is excited to extend a warm welcome to Mr. William D. Johnson, CPA, MBA, a recent addition to the Pinnacle Team as Executive Director of Financial Operations.

    Mr. Johnson offers a wide range of healthcare experience to the Pinnacle Group that includes nearly 30 years of executive leadership.  His areas of expertise include strategic healthcare initiatives with health systems and physician practices.  Bill’s professional experiences include strategic planning, business development, physician recruiting, operational management of large physician practices in multiple locations, outreach development, financial operations, business/practice mergers and acquisitions, physician/hospital joint ventures, selection of practice management and electronic health systems for practices.  He has additional experience in third-party contracting, physician integration strategies, physician compensation models and tax planning for strategic decisions.  Within Pinnacle, Bill will provide financial and strategic direction as well as consulting on client engagements.

    Prior to joining Pinnacle, Bill served 14 years as a Vice President of Finance with the HealthONE Hospital System and more recently, 15 years as a Chief Executive Officer for Western Cardiology Associates and Aurora Denver Cardiology Associates PC, (the largest cardiology group practice in the metro Denver market place). Bill was actively involved in providing strategic leadership and organizational direction for a large cardiology group practice encompassing all sub specialties in cardiology and 150 employees offering cardiac care in Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska.  He developed and provided Board direction to three separate business entities encompassing under arrangement cardiac cath laboratories in Aurora, Denver and Durango, Colorado.

    Bill’s additional experience includes time with Coopers & Lybrand Certified Public Accountants in both their Chicago and Denver offices with a focus on financial auditing and tax planning for individual and corporate clients.

    In his free time, Bill enjoys the serenity of fly-fishing in Colorado’s rivers and streams.  He additionally enjoys other forms of outdoor recreation such as playing tennis and mountain biking.  However, don’t peg him as your standard Colorado resident. His interests are as varied as they are unique.  Just ask him about his interest in amateur radio.

    Expertise

     – Strategic planning and business development

    – Physician/hospital relationships and joint ventures

    – Financial analysis, forecasting and modeling

    – Physician compensation planning and analysis

    – Physician practice mergers and acquisitions

    Professional Designations and Affiliations

    – Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Colorado

    – Member, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants

    – Member, Colorado Society of Certified Public Accountants

    – Member, Medical Group Management Association 

    Education

     – MBA, with an emphasis in finance, Regis University, Denver Colorado

    – BSBA in Accounting, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado

    The Pinnacle Group provides a range of strategic, financial and operational services to improve clinical and business performance for hospitals, health systems, physician groups and other healthcare organizations.  Pinnacle Healthcare Consulting is a nationally recognized leader in business valuation, physician compensation, medical staff planning, performance improvement and compliance support.  Other divisions of Pinnacle provide physician practice management, medical bill/coding, and technology/integration support services.  Pinnacle’s array of specialized and highly responsive client services promote advanced innovation while our dynamic team solidifies strong client relationships and assists in solving your most complex challenges.

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  • The Pinnacle Group at HCCA Compliance Institute – Dallas 2010!

    A Novel Idea – Pinnacle Physician FMV Program 2010 – “Simplify Physician Contracting”

    The Pinnacle Group will be attending the Health Care Compliance Association’s 14th annual Compliance Institute in Dallas, Texas – April 18th – 21st.  Visit the Pinnacle Group at booth #207 to enter the drawing for a 2010 Pinnacle Physician FMV Program license, valued at $8,750.  

     Determining appropriate and compliant physician salaries is complicated. 

    Challenges

    *  Recruitment and retention    

    *  Responding to competition and pay demands   

    *  Medicare and IRS compliance   

    *  Creating and effective intergration strategy   

    *  Involving physicians in governance    

    Limitations

    *  Elevated compliance scrutiny/enforcement risk     

    *  Inadequate compensation knowledge and reliable data    

    *  Internal resource and budget constraints    

    *  Many other competing demands/pressure to “get deals done”      

     Diverse factors like the Stark Law and inconsistent internal payment policies make it difficult to confidently approach physician compensation negotiations.  Until now.

     An Enlightening Service…that supports your fair market value needs in physician compensation:

     The Pinnacle FMV Program dramatically reduces the complexity of  determining physician fair market value.  The Program helps you build internal capacity and provides you with more control over the contracting process with powerful information and proprietary tools to help you make defensible decisions about physician relationships. The Pinnacle FMV Program dramatically reduces the complexity of determining physician fair market value.  It builds internal capacity and gives you more control over the process by providing proprietary tools and powerful information to help you make defensible decisions about physician relationships. Hospitals using the FMV Program immediately possess greater knowledge on which to base physician contracting decisions, the reliability of a proven FMV analytical methodology and improved capacity to manage and document compensation and other contractual terms.    

    Contact Us Today – 303.801.0123 or kberkey@pinnaclegrouphc.com

    www.physicianfmv.com

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  • Upcoming Webinar – Hospital & Physician Integration- Maintaining Fair Market Value Perspective

     

    Hospital & Physician Integration- Maintaining Fair Market Value Perspective  

     Join us for a Webinar on July 20  

     Space is limited.

    Reserve your Webinar seat now at:
    https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/607523721  

    Overview:  With increasing pressure for hospitals to align with physicians, understanding your options, what Fair Market Value is and how it effects those options is an integral step to compliance and successful integration. This program will provide practical insights into this complicated but critical topic.  

    Who Should Attend: Chief Financial Officers, Compliance Officers, Healthcare Attorneys  , and other Professional engaged in Physician Contracting

    Title:  Hospital & Physician Integration- Maintaining Fair Market Value Perspective  

    Date:  Tuesday, July 20, 2010

    Time:  12:00 PM – 1:00 PM MDT

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  • Pinnacle Top 5

    UPMC Creates E-Health App for BlackBerry Smartphones

    The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center says it has created an app doctors can use to receive important patient data via their BlackBerry smartphones. In addition, the health care organization has completed a proof-of-concept of a technology platform that helps doctors and patients share information.

    http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Health-Care-IT/UPMC-Creates-EHealth-App-for-BlackBerry-Smartphones-820733/

    Standard & Poor’s Assesses Sustainability of Recovery for Not-for-Profit Healthcare Sector

    Don’t let the current stabilization in the U.S. not-for-profit healthcare sector fool you. Looming financial and operational stresses may make this only a temporary rebound, according to Martin Arrick, managing director for Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services’ not-for-profit healthcare group, in a teleconference on March 2.

    http://www.hfma.org/hfmanews/PermaLink,guid,da248fb2-3243-4979-befc-dbabeed309f7.aspx 

    Medicaid Integrity Program Promises New Headaches

    If RAC audits have hospitals reaching for aspirin, then the MIP may just land them in intensive care.

    It may have been flying under the radar for the past four years, but the Medicaid Integrity Program (MIP) is about to become healthcare providers’ latest challenge, with more dollars at stake and more provider types at risk.

    http://www.fortherecordmag.com/archives/030310p10.shtml

     Wave of U.S. Physicians Planning to Adopt Electronic Medical Records, Accenture Report Finds

    RESTON, Va.; March 2, 2010 – Fifty-eight percent of U.S. physicians who don’t use electronic medical records (EMRs) intend to purchase an EMR system within the next two years, according to a new report from Accenture (NYSE: ACN).  

    http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/press-releases/wave-u-s-physicians-planning-adopt-electronic-medical-records-accenture-report-finds

     AMA: Protect Physician Identify to Limit Fraud

    Health care fraud could be reigned in if more attention was paid to protecting physicians from it rather than investigating them for it. That was the general message the American Medical Association (AMA) relayed to government officials at a “National Summit on Health Care Fraud” on Jan. 28.

     http://news.aapc.com/index.php/2010/02/ama-protect-physician-identify-to-limit-fraud/

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  • Pinnacle Top 5

     
    Stay informed with what The Pinnacle Group is reading in relation to current events and topics within the healthcare industry.

    Health Care simplified: Part 1

    Dr. Sanjay Gupta explains how your care may change and how much you’ll pay if the current health care bill is approved.

    http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/health/2010/02/08/gupta.health.care.panel.part1.cnn

    Online Disclosure of Physician/Industry Relationships

    The Cleveland Clinic and some of its leading physicians have been criticized for their financial associations with industry and the limited disclosure of these relationships to patients and the public. In response, the medical center has strengthened its policies and oversight with regard to conflicts of interest and required that all industry relationships be submitted for approval. Since December 2008, it has also disclosed on its Web site (www.clevelandclinic.org) some of the industry ties of its 2000 physicians and researchers and their immediate families.

    http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/full/360/4/325

    Can Health Care Come With a Warranty?

    In the policy journal Health Affairs, Francois de Brantes, a nationally known advocate of health care quality, and his co-authors propose a new health care reimbursement model that comes with a warranty.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/25/health/25chen.html?_r=2&pagewanted=1

    Hospital Strategies for Effective Performance Management – An HFMA Educational Report

    Optimally managing costs and clinical quality depends on understanding and managing a hospital’s performance drivers. By creating the right organizational structure and processes for accessing and reporting data, hospital leadership can more effectively manage the organization’s resources and improve performance.

    http://www.hfma.org/library/accounting/400681_Hospital_Performance_Management.htm

    How healthy is the county you live in?

    Americans can now go online and find out how the county they live in ranks in terms of health outcomes and health factors. This is all part of the report that ranks the overall health of all 50 states, from healthiest to least healthy, courtesy of the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. They’re calling this report, “the first annual checkup for every county in the nation.”

    http://pagingdrgupta.blogs.cnn.com/2010/02/17/how-healthy-is-the-county-you-live-in/

    Health care reform and you

    CNN’s chief medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, answers viewer questions on the health care reform bill.

    http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/health/2010/02/08/gupta.health.care.panel.part1.cnn

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  • The Pinnacle Group Co-sponsors with Husch Blackwell Sanders in Weathering the Storm: Critical Legal & Operational Issues Shaping Healthcare in 2010 (3/04/2010)

    Weathering the Storm - Critical Legal & Operational Issues Shaping Healthcare in 2010 

    Weathering the Storm:

    Critical Legal & Operational Issues

    Shaping Healthcare in 2010

        

          The Pinnacle Group is proud to join together with Husch Blackwell Sanders and invite you to our 2010 healthcare forecast, where you can learn how your organization can successfully ride out the storm.      

    Date & Time
    Thursday, March 4, 2010
    Noon Registration and Lunch
    1-5 pm Program
    5-7pm Reception       

    Locations:
    Seminar
    Warwick Denver Hotel
    1776 Grant Street
    Denver, CO 80203
    303-861-2000        

    Reception following program:
    Husch Blackwell Sanders office
    One block west of Warwick hotel
    1700 Lincoln Street, Suite 4700
    Denver, CO 80203     

    RSVP
    Please register by Thursday, February 25 by visiting the website
    www.huschblackwell.com/denverhealthcare.  Select your breakout sessions and indicate if you will join us for the reception.  For questions contact Shana How at 816.983.8809 or email shana.hoy@huschblackwell.com.    

    CLE Credit
    Colorado CLE credit is pending 
        

    Topics     

    Trends in Hospital Physician Integration   

     A Former Federal Prosecutor’s Views on Healthcare Enforcement Trends for 2010    

     Breakout Session I:
         –  Preparing for and Responding to RAC & MIC Audits
         –  Medical Staff Landmines: Disruptive Physicians
       

     Breakout Session II: 
         –  Maintaining FMV Perspective in Physician Contracting
         –  Healthcare Quality Initiatives: The Next Big Thing
     
     
     

       

       Event co-sponsored by The Pinnacle Group            

     

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  • Introducing Physician FMV Online for 2010

        

         

     

       The Pinnacle Physician FMV Program 2010 Overview

    We are proud to celebrate the Pinnacle Physician FMV Program’s fourth year and would like to thank you for your support and feedback as we continue to improve our analytical tools and data robustness. Over one hundred hospitals nationally have found that the Pinnacle Physician FMV Program empowers them to make smart and supportable decisions with regard to physician compensation fair market value matters. 

    For 2010, we are excited to introduce Physician FMV Online.  Our new online application offers the workbooks in a more user-friendly format along with the ability to generate custom opinion letters on the fly, data backed by Pinnacle’s FMV opinion as well as includes detailed data on compensation for employed physicians, medical director hourly rates and daily call payments.  This new feature allows you to drill down the data you need, keep track of physician relationships and access the FMV Network data to conduct your own research. 

    Program benefits:

    • The Program generally pays for itself in two uses (i.e., avoiding fees for focused consulting reports).
    • The Program saves significant time—where energy can be redirected to more pressing matters (strategy, operations, etc.).  Based on our participants’ experience, the program successfully supports: 
    • 80+ % Medical Directorship Agreements
    • 60+ % Employment Arrangements
    • 40+ % Physician Call / Availability Payment Arrangements
    • Participant return on investment (ROI) of over 300% to 500%

    • As a benefit of Program participation, hospitals are given access to market comparable data on physician arrangements at other participating hospitals.  This information is continually updated.
    • In addition to the efficiency and savings, the Program creates consistency across physician contracts and promotes Medicare/IRS compliance.
    • Use of the Program payment ranges is backed by an objective and proven third-party methodology.
    • The Program increases the organizational capacity and sensitivity for identifying and solving physician compensation challenges.

     To schedule a demo, contact Kimberly Berkey:  (p) 303.801.0123 or kberkey@medbizz.com 

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  • A Few New Changes for Pinnacle

    Hello,

    Thank you for taking a moment to read our blog. Coming soon, the Pinnacle Team will be using this blog to provide you with relevant information related to various aspects the healthcare industry.   The Pinnacle Group provides a range of strategic, financial and operational services to help hospitals, health systems, physician groups and other healthcare organizations improve their clinical and business performance.  Pinnacle Healthcare services seek to simplify success in healthcare.  By building relationships and championing innovation, we have created a dynamic set of services backed by a powerful team to help you solve the most complex challenges.  With our new blog, we hope to pass on useful information to keep you current on the happenings in healthcare.

    Thank you for your time and please visit again soon!

    The Pinnacle Team

    Simplifying the Business of Healthcare

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