Relative value units useful in evaluating practice finances

Relative value units useful in evaluating practice finances

(HealthDay)—The Relative Value Unit (RVU) is a useful tool for managing practice finances, according to an article published Feb. 25 in Medical Economics.

Jeffrey Bendix, a senior editor at Medical Economics, writes that RVUs are used by Medicare to decide how much it will reimburse physicians for each of the 9,000-plus services and procedures covered under its Physician Fee Schedule. Given that RVUs are a "kind of national standard," physicians should be familiar with them. RVUs, experts say, are a useful way of comparing how well payers reimburse for the same service or procedure. Additionally, providers' productivity-per RVU relative to one another in the practice can be measured.

Additionally, Bendix says, RVUs can aid in determining how much to compensate in group practices, either through measuring productivity or through a strategy that pays each physician a salary plus a bonus tied to the number of work RVUs generated over a base number. With large hospital systems using RVUs to set physician compensation and bonuses, practices with RVU knowledge can assess whether these goals are realistic for them to attain.

"From a practice management perspective, understanding RVUs is important because 'they are the language the payers speak when contracting with practices, and for reimbursing doctors for the work they do,'" said Jeffrey Milburn, an independent national practice consultant with the Medical Group Management Association, according to the Medical Economics article.

More information: More Information

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Report reveals payment methods for physicians

Jan 30, 2014

(HealthDay)—Many physicians in non-solo practice settings are paid using different methods, with just over half receiving all or most of their compensation from salary, according to a report from the American ...

Top ten physician challenges of 2014 discussed

Jan 27, 2014

(HealthDay)—The top ten challenges for physicians in 2014 relate to payment for medical services and government mandates, as well as adapting to a changing patient population and the need to improve work-life ...

Recommended for you

Blending faith and science to combat obesity

2 hours ago

Science and religion may seem like uneasy partners at times, but when it comes to promoting healthy lifestyles, one UConn Health researcher has shown they can be an effective combination.

Research project puts stroke patients back on their feet

2 hours ago

Finding the will to exercise routinely can be challenging enough for most people, but a stroke presents even more obstacles. Yet aerobic exercise may be crucial for recovery and reducing the risk of another ...

Air quality and unconventional oil and gas sites

5 hours ago

Research suggesting air pollutants released by unconventional oil and gas production are well over recommended levels in the US is published today in the open access journal Environmental Health. High levels of benzene, hydrog ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.