Adding midlevel providers

Thinking about incorporating midlevel providers into your practice? Here's what you need to know before doing so.

Q: We are contemplating restructuring our practice to incorporate midlevel providers because healthcare reform suggests patients should be seen by providers with the correct skill set for the issue at hand. What should we keep in mind?

Examine your practice and decide which type of midlevel provider would be beneficial. For example, if you plan to let the midlevel see patients for follow-up appointments without direct physician involvement, or grow his or her own pool of patients, consider hiring a nurse practitioner. Practices that perform routine physical exams can use physicians' assistants.

Also, check with your malpractice insurance carrier to discuss potential liability issues and to ensure that you have proper coverage.

Answers to our readers' questions were provided by Thomas J. Ferkovic, RPh, MS, managing director, SS&G Healthcare Services LLC, Akron, Ohio.

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