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  • Michelle Shimmin

The Power of Metrics in your Practice


How can I know if the data I am collecting is showing me an area of concern in my practice, or if what I am seeing is a result of conditions that are believed to be “beyond our control” …. like COVID?

I hear often from doctors and staff, “Before _____ we were seeing this many patients per day and now we are seeing this many patients per day” or, “Before ______ my delinquencies were this low and now they are this high”.

First, there are many factors in our practices beyond our control that will show up in the data that is collected. However, if the only analysis done on the data is “this happened because of this” it will keep you from proactively translating the metrics to practice application. (See previous posts for more information on how to do this).

Absorbing the data, in all circumstances, as opportunities to improve processes, improve training, and improve your objectives for the practice will allow you to make better decisions even when external circumstances are driving the change in your practice. This has proved itself in our industry many times with the changes in modalities, changes in patient drivers, changes in business models (private, DSO, DTC, etc.), and environmental changes such as COVID that have changed things immediately but provide many opportunities for the practice to thrive.

The nice thing about data and graphs is that they are not emotional, they don’t feel happy one day and frustrated the next. They show the truth (when gathered accurately); they don’t sugar coat the message. You can see the “What” very quickly and very easily. The “Why” and the “What Now” take a little more work and I have talked in previous posts as well about how to accomplish that work.

In many areas, employee training, additional processes and a high level of accountability will be able to address these concerns and get things back on the right track. A consultant can be an objective expert to help you through addressing the areas of concern in your practice. Your practice is as unique as you are, and a one size fits all solution will not resolve your concerns or achieve your objectives. You will need to find a partner that will understand your reality and customize solutions that fit your goals, not theirs. Shimmin Consulting has made it their mission to provide practices with the tools and strategies needed to have the practice and the team you have worked hard to build.

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