Huggins Hospital has been fortunate to have a low medical staff turnover. Being a small, critical access hospital, primary care turnover affects the community in a significant way. In 2008 Huggins was faced with the need to recruit two primary care physicians. They quickly realized the environment was changing when very few candidates were presented who were interested in practicing traditionally. It seemed that two tracks had replaced one: inpatient or outpatient, not both. This prompted hospital administrators to begin discussions with their medical staff on how to preserve primary care in their community for the long term. After a year of discussions and researching different options, they came to the conclusion a Hospitalist program was necessary.
Due to immediate outpatient recruitment needs, Huggins decided to get the program started before they would be able to recruit the Hospitalist team. In January of 2009, Huggins Hospital's administration team met with Medicus to discuss a partnership for launching a Hospitalist program. After a few discussions and meetings, Huggins Hospital and Medicus entered into a partnership and the Hospitalist program officially launched on March 23, 2009.
"The Medicus physicians worked in conjunction with our local providers to ensure 100% coverage of the schedule," states Dave Tower, hospital president. "Over the course of the first 3-6 months, many changes took place with the structure of the schedule, how we integrated Medicus physicians into the system, established policies and procedures and integrated the Hospitalist program into our system and with our patients.
Medicus offered one point of contact who handled all of the staffing, scheduling and overall management of the program. The Medicus team played an active role in the credentialing process by supporting our Medical Staff team with a lot of the leg work that takes place. By partnering with Medicus, we didn't have to work with multiple companies to secure the coverage we needed.
We anticipated Medicus would provide coverage for the first 9 months, but we actually needed a few more months to complete our full time recruiting strategy. By March 2010, Medicus started to phase their physicians off the schedule and by June 2010, Huggins Hospital was fully staffed. To this day, we rely on Medicus to provide vacation and holiday coverage."
In 2007, we found ourselves in a transition stage with our Anesthesia Department at one of our hospitals. The incumbent group was nearing the end of their contract, and the new group was not slated to start for a few months. During this period, we were down 2-3 FTEs. Our affiliate hospital in Waynesboro also used locums Anesthesia doctors.
I was working with multiple locums companies representing multiple providers. We were experiencing quality issues with some of the doctors, and managing the process of covering the openings at both hospitals was becoming a full time job for me. I realized that I needed a better solution.
Medicus offered to manage my entire schedule for both hospitals and guarantee both the coverage and the quality of the physicians. We knew that Medicus was easy to work with, and the quality and consistency of the Medicus physicians was the best that we had experienced. So, we decided to work with Medicus exclusively, giving me a single point of contact.
Medicus seamlessly managed us through our transition. The quality of their clinical team, as well as the efficiency of their internal team allowed us to focus on the development of our new practice policies, operations and permanent recruiting.
Although the transition is over and we have a full staff, we use Medicus physicians for unexpected vacancies and vacation coverage - for Anesthesia and other specialties. Our medical staff and community enjoy seeing familiar physicians when we need help.
I would recommend Medicus to any facility that may find themselves in a similar situation.