Developing the Physician Office Referral Channel

This Pillar is challenging to build as hospice companies have traditionally done a poor job of understanding how to go about obtaining “traction” in this referral channel. Further, hospice sales staff don’t feel comfortable calling upon physicians and their offices.

Physicians, as we all know, are hard to get to. There are ways to accomplish this. There is value in developing key relationships with the physician office referral nurse and/or office manager.
Knowing how to target key physicians is critical; an obvious statement!! You can buy Medicare physician utilization data that shows the number of hospice referrals a physician makes and to whom the referral goes. This data will give you great focus on where to place your efforts.

Here is a list of useful mean and methods to implement that will help you build your Physician Pillar.

  1. Call upon your Medical Director and key physician allies to help you break-in to the physicians you are targeting. Often only doctors can talk to doctors.
  2. When calling upon a physician’s office use a laser focus approach. Talk to them about what a hospice patient looks like using a very disease specific approach, i.e. COPD, CHF, etc.
  3. Physicians and nurses were educated using a Case Study approach. Write a monthly Case Study and share.
  4. Primary Care Physician follow-up! PCPs are often left out of the loop. Take every opportunity to provide them information and feedback.
  5. The Health Care Advisory Board in Washington D.C. identified Physician Advisory Board Meetings as a AAA referral development strategy.
  6. If it is legal, moral and ethical, the more physicians you can engage in a business relationship, the better!

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