Well, another interesting article this week regarding the exodus of physicians from private practice. This time, it’s the Philadelphia Inquirer reporting on "Why Heart Doctors are Leaving Private Practice" Only time will tell if this a merely a fad or a real change in the way healthcare will be delivered going forward. We have seen this "trend" before, however, and it didn’t really work out that well for many physicians or hospitals.
In my experience, those transactions that are based upon each party’s short-term gains/protection are unlikely to take hold for the long-term. Striking a deal that works adequately for an initial three-year employment term is not that difficult. The real trick is in building a model that will last well beyond the first three or six years. If the employment model (think "goverance and compensation") doesn’t foster and reward collaborative success, employed physicians end-up feeling disenfranchised, and unfortunately disenfranchised employees usually don’t care that much about the success of their employer. There is certainly an opportunity for forward-thinking physicians and hospitals to use the current climate as a catalyst to build a truly integrated delivery model but it will require both parties to check some heavy baggage at the door.