2021 Inline Sessions: Primary Care Strategy - 2021 & Beyond

Apr 06, 2021

Primary care is the cornerstone of healthcare. A key component of preventative medicine, primary care closes health disparities and increases positive outcomes. For this Inline Session, Aisha DeBerry of Bon Secours Mercy Health discussed the future of primary care, post-pandemic.

Much like healthcare facilities across the country, Bon Secours put their recruitment on hold in March 2020. But the pause didn’t last long. Opportunities opened back up and Bon Secours ended up recruiting just as many physicians in 2020 as they did in 2019. But if hiring didn’t change, what did? We’re all familiar with the answer by now: virtual interviewing. Physicians began accepting opportunities without ever stepping foot on-site at their hiring facilities. For Bon Secours recruiting team, the question became,

“How do we find the right candidate without meeting them in person?”

While the answer is different for every facility, virtual interviewing has proven to be cost-effective for the hiring process. Recruiters are now able to further screen candidates before the on-site interview, thus saving money on travel expenses.

So if healthcare facilities are keeping their physician staff full, what does the future of primary care delivery look like? You probably guessed this one right too: telehealth.

COVID made health systems nationwide pivot to telehealth. Luckily for Bon Secours, they had already implemented a strong telemedicine platform prior to the pandemic. Their hospitals went from seeing roughly 50 patients a day to up to 3,400 patients a day, all thanks to telemedicine. And the result of these telehealth appointments? Better physician/patient interactions.

Telehealth access allows patients to see their primary care provider not only for yearly checkups, but for colds, sore throats, etc. (i.e. concerns they’d typically go to urgent care to address). Thanks to this ease of access, Bon Secours patient satisfaction scores elevated higher than they were pre-COVID.

Despite all of the unforeseen positive outcomes from the pandemic, one issue still remains: physician burnout.

A hot topic before COVID, the pandemic only amplified the impact on physicians. 64% of surveyed U.S. physicians said the pandemic intensified their burnout. In the same study, when asked how they coped with pandemic stress, 29% said they were eating more and 19% said they were drinking more alcohol. Consider that as many as 400 doctors commit suicide each year, more than twice the rate of the general population.

Bon Secours is taking steps to help stop burnout from having such an impact by beginning their 2020 Action Plan for Physician Well-Being.

For details on what the plan includes and how Bon Secours Mercy health is improving the physician experience, watch the full Inline Session with Aisha DeBerry by clicking here. You’ll gain free access to this and all previous Inline Sessions.


Recruiters, Telemedicine


Related Articles

21 Jan 2020
Student Loans: Get Off My Back!

Many students, past and present, deal with the necessary haggle of student loans; especially for those pursuing higher education. A survey completed by the AAMC in 2015 states that medical students in particular who graduated that year carried on average $182K in debt, while those who graduated in 2016, rose up to $190K, with nearly 25% carrying more than $200K. Pretty substantial, and frankly “scary” numbers for a medical student. In additional to this burden, about 33% of these students still carry a debt from their undergraduate studies, which is typically around $24K.

Now that we've fed you the veggies, how about some good news? Once you matched into a residency program, the general salary for a first-year resident is $52.5K. Though you may not be jumping out of your shoes, there are many programs available beyond your initial salary that can help you chip away at those lingering debts. For example, a ten-year plan would pan out to about $2,000 per month in payments (with $182K in loans). 

Solution number one is to finance your debts through a private lender. This could provide you with a lower interest rate, but you’ll have to pre-qualify first via few factors, including your credit as well as your current income. Solution number two is to consider working for an organization in a state that offers a student loan assistance program. Though it varies by area, certain states can knock away a considerable piece of those loans in just a few years. In Texas, the Physician Education Loan Repayment Program offers up to $160K for over four years of practice in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA). In New York, Doctors Across New York provides an additional payment of up to $150K over a five-year commitment to doctors practicing in underserved areas.

The student loan forgiveness state programs are a valuable resource, and should be taken into serious consideration when deciding on a destination and facility of choice. Perhaps you’re thinking of immediate relief, or more of a short-term solution. To be honest, that is not really feasible with $200K in debt. But, when negotiating your “dream” role, it is important to use that as an opportunity to obtain a possible sign-on bonus as well as relocation assistance to help ease the burden, at least temporarily. Keeping a positive mind-set, and considering all possible solutions, can help you achieve your goals of financial growth and stability as a physician.

28 Jan 2020
What is Digital Marketing & How Can it Help Recruit Physicians?

When asked if they’ve “gone digital,” many companies will say, “Of course. We have a website, a Facebook page, and we send email campaigns!” While this kind of online presence is important, digital marketing consists of much, much more. 

Digital Marketing is an action. And not just a single action, but an ongoing, evolving action that empowers you to spend your marketing dollars as efficiently as possible. The first step is putting a piece of content online. What transforms this into digital marketing is the data.

Imagine you see an online job posting. You’re pleased with your current employer, but if a better opportunity presented itself, you’d be interested. In this case, you see a job with a great company and it would cut your commute time in half. You click on the listing, quickly scan it over, make a mental note to return to it later, and move on with your day. 

We all know what happens next: you completely forget you ever saw it. We all see thousands of ads per day. The odds of your one ad being remembered are slim. This is where digital marketing steps in. Remember the job listing you clicked on and forgot about? Since you engaged with the ad, you’ll eventually see a similar ad again. 

This retargeting empowers the workforce to see those jobs they are most interested in and inform themselves about the employer. It also empowers your organization to engage with candidates who have a strong interest in your opportunity. If you’d like to learn more about digital marketing for physician recruiting, click here to schedule a time to speak with a member of our business development team.

30 Jan 2020
How To Avoid Being a Job Hopper

As a physician or advanced practitioner, there are opportunities all over that can expand your experience and your skills, but when it comes to the best time to move from one job to the next is tricky. Everyone’s situation is somewhat the same in one way or another; the specialty isn’t what they expected or the facility wasn’t the right environment for them. Things happen, and wanting to change them for the better is completely understandable; but when it comes to consistently changing jobs year after year, that could potentially ruin your chances in obtaining your “perfect job.”

Before transitioning from one position to the next, ask yourself this: How long have I worked at this facility and how long was I at my previous job?

  • If your employment list is short, or you have worked at a facility for a couple years or more, the chances of being seen as a job-hopper is slim.
  • If you have worked with several employers, and have only been at each for a year or less, that may bring up concerns from future employers.
  • If you have worked with your current employer for a year or less, identify your reason for wanting a change.

Ask yourself why this position is not working out for you, is it because of salary, hours, or location? What position are you wanting to transition into and why? Carrying on from why you are leaving your previous position for another; what are you seeking to improve or gain more experience in?

Hopefully by identifying your job history and maintaining a balance when transitioning from one job to another, you should have no problem in avoiding job-hopping.