Matthew Shuford, MD
Jerri Wilson, CEO of Urology Clinics of North Texas (UCNT), said it was last summer that payers started making it more difficult to gain payment approvals. “We saw an increase in demand for records and more scrutinizing of notes and data,” she said. More patients were being denied for coverage for tests and procedures. The practice was feeling the effects of a payer backlash against the rising costs of care. As manufacturers charge increasingly higher prices for new therapies and even well-established agents, payers have responded with pressure on practices to justify every cost, and UCNT, like many other independent practices, is caught in the middle.
Despite these payer challenges, UCNT has found ways to thrive and grow, both by building up its in-house offerings and by collaborating with outside providers to improve coordination of care and quality of service to patients.
Enjoying a Niche for Urologic Care
In the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area, UCNT is a large, multilocation practice that covers the gamut of urologic care. Practice administrators said they are fortunate in that in their market, they have little competition. The hospitals in their area don’t hire urologists. Consequently, UCNT has seen tremendous growth since it was founded in 1999. Along the way, it has upgraded its operations by coordinating care with outside specialists, bringing more care options in-house, and employing data analytics to track patient care and to improve efficiency and outcomes.
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