Benchmarking is defined as the process of comparing the cost, cycle time, productivity, or quality of a specific process or method to another that is widely considered to be an industry standard or best practice (O’Neill, Dam, Gutbezahl, n.d.). Benchmarking is a great tool used to monitor productivity and profitability. A successful physical therapy department needs to be running efficiently in all areas, including employee productivity, correct charging and collections and the use of support staff as well as the therapists (Edgar, 2011). Benchmarking can help show you the problem areas of the department that may need attention and reorganizing thus improving productivity and profitability. In order to improve productivity of a physical therapy department the following steps are needed: 1) measure staff efficiency for a baseline; 2) set targets for improvement; 3) use productivity measures related to quality, patient satisfaction, outcomes, revenue and expense (Dobrzykowski, 2012). Benchmarking data needed for a physical therapy department are: Weighted procedures (WPs) per provider work hour, WPs per visit, visits per 8-hour day, visits per patient, initial evaluation show rate, follow-up visit show rate, payments per WP, payments per visit, compensation cost per visit (Edgar, 2011). Weighted procedures are weighted in proportion to work relative value units, this then accounts for differences in skill, effort, and payment rates (Edgar, 2011). The following benchmarks were collected over a five year period and based on more than 2 million visits to physical therapy clinics, these are averages based on the above physical therapy specific data (Edgar, 2011). Each timed CPT code has a weight of 1, initial evaluations have a weight of 3 and modalities have a weight of 0.5, hot and cold packs have a weight of 0.25. The weighting system allows for comparisons among...
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