April 01, 2023
1 min read
Huneycutt J. RPA benchmarking survey results. Presented at: Renal Physicians Association Annual Meeting; March 30-April 2, 2023; New Orleans.
Huneycutt reports being an employee of Metrolina Nephrology Associates.
- Survey shows nephrology practices have added more support staff.
- Practice revenue has increased since 2017.
NEW ORLEANS — Results from a survey of nephrology practices presented at the Renal Physicians Association Annual Meeting indicate staffing increased in 2021 despite the loss of patients on dialysis due to COVID-19.
“The survey shows approximately 50% [of nephrology practices] increased the number of physicians in their practice in the last 2 years,” Jennifer Huneycutt, CPA, CMPE, practice administrator for Metrolina Nephrology Associates, said in a presentation, here. “That is going to be important in terms of what is happening on the revenue side of practices.”
Overall, 112 nephrology practices participated in the survey, which is conducted every 2 years by the RPA. The practices responding to the survey represented 1,429 nephrologists. A survey was not conducted in 2019 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Huneycutt said.
Data from the survey show net practice revenue increased on average from $679.01 per full-time equivalent (FTE) nephrologist in 2017 to $727.94 per FTE in 2021. Researchers also found nephrology practices added staff. Practices had a mean of 0.48 advanced practitioners in 2017 per FTE compared with 0.58 advanced practitioners per FTE in 2021, Huneycutt said. Ancillary and administrative staff also increased, however, research staff was slightly down compared with 2017, she said.
Researchers also found practices reported seeing fewer patients in the hospital. Hospital encounters per FTE nephrologist decreased by 192 in 2021 compared with the 2017 data. More nephrology practices added infusion centers – 7.9% ownership by practices in 2017 compared with 13.4% ownership in 2021. More practices added dietitian services and the use of telehealth increased from 13.5% of practices in 2017 to 95.6% in 2021, Huneycutt said.
Results show the costs for operating a nephrology practice decreased from $340,224 per FTE nephrologist in 2017 to $324,078 per FTE nephrologist in 2021. Additionally, Huneycutt said nephrology practices placed more patients on home dialysis in 2021 compared with 2017 as the growth in home dialysis increased from 13.8% in 2017 to 16.8% in 2021.
The complete survey results are available from the Renal Physicians Association at www.renalmd.org.