'You can do good and do well' — DuPage CEO Michael Kasper on transforming healthcare

Written by Megan Wood | June 27, 2017 | Print  |

Many hospitals are reacting to the current state of the healthcare industry by scurrying to deliver as many services and enter as many markets as possible.

But when hospitals began focusing on monopolizing the industry instead of their core business, they stopped being good hospitals, said Michael Kasper, CEO of Chicago-based DuPage Medical Group.


"In healthcare, it's better to know who you're not, then trying to be everything else," said Mr. Kasper. He sees the industry at an inflection point, when billion became the new million in healthcare, and thinks one of two things will occur. Either hospitals will retrench and focus on their central business or a new player will enter the hospital space.

"And [that new stakeholder] may not be a player that any of us are going to like, by the way," said Mr. Kasper during a keynote presentation at Becker's 15th Annual Spine, Orthopedic and Pain Management-Driven ASC Conference + The Future of Spine, June 24 in Chicago. "So, we want to create more alternatives for physicians and DuPage Medical Group is one of those alternatives."


DuPage is attempting to transform medicine by providing a unified voice to boost the patient experience. The lowest cost option and lowest cost accountable care organization in Chicago, DuPage spends $8,847 per beneficiary per year. The company works with more than 600 physicians who provide more than 50 service lines.


"We want to create another option for doctors; that's our strategic mission," Mr. Kasper said. "And the main reason we want to create that option is because it's good for patients." DuPage believes in a collaborative model, where various stakeholders come together to work as partners.


"This is not easy, but it becomes a lot harder when you take all the disparate pieces that are difficult enough [to manage] on their own and try to smash them together under one roof," explained Mr. Kasper.


DuPage prioritizes its strategies in five main areas, with the ultimate goal of linking all outpatient medicine services in a "virtuous model."


1. Physician growth. Every action DuPage takes begins with its physicians. The group boosts it physician base to add additional specialties, targeting more than 300 providers in 24 to 36 months.


2. Medicare. Currently, an insurance company pays a hospital across the street from DuPage $2,500 and pays DuPage $500 for the same MRI service. Mr. Kasper explained the tide is shifting, where Medicare and other payers will begin to only pay $500 for that service.


3. Risk. "We can spend a million dollars to get a dollar better than any other [industry]," said Mr. Kasper. "It's a horrible way to manage a business." In contrast, DuPage put little investment into an organization it built from the group up called Boncura, a physician-driven management services organization intended to maximize productivity and efficiency.


4. Ancillary growth. Mr. Kasper said the health system's number one opportunity is providing site of service. Ancillary opportunities include ambulatory surgery centers, psychical therapy, immediate care centers, radiation oncology and diagnostic imaging.


5. Technology. The deployment of technology also proves critical to boosting access. Real convenience is receiving a physician exam from your home.


"We as healthcare leaders need to change [the industry], because if we don't do it, no one else will," urged Mr. Kasper. The government, a hospital singular-focused model, employers nor patients will fix healthcare, he added. "Healthcare delivery is everyone's problem except for the patient."


Ultimately, DuPage strives to offer an independent solution for physicians and patients. And that solution is built upon a physician-centric model in which the physicians trust each other. Mr. Kasper cautioned against models that pit physicians against each other, where the conversation is overridden by politics rather than focused on healthcare.


"I would encourage you to evaluate your organizations in this regard," explained Mr. Kasper. "Are they focused on political gain, personal income or are they focused on taking care of people?"


While leaders must ensure financial wellness, Mr. Kasper posits organizations can do well while also doing good in the community by delivering world-class care.


"You can do good and do well; they are not mutually exclusive," said Mr. Kasper.


More articles on practice management:
The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics names Richard Robinson COO
AMA writes letter to Senate in opposition to healthcare bill: 4 things to know
HSS Paramus Outpatient Center completes 4,522-sq-ft expansion: 7 highlights


© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2018. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies here.

Top 40 Articles from the Past 6 Months