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Medical Group Management Association

Data Insights

Understand the past and present to propel your practice into the future.

Make informed decisions for your practice through insights and benchmarks from industry-leading data analysis, reports and surveys.

Staff

Provide the total full-time equivalent (FTE) support staff (to the nearest tenth FTE) in the FTE column and the associated cost (to the nearest whole dollar) in the Cost column. For “Total business operations support staff,” “Total front office support staff,” “Total clinical support staff,” “Total ancillary support staff,” and “Total support staff,” provide the total if the components are not available.
Include in FTE questions:

  • The full-time equivalent (FTE) for all support staff employed by all the legal entities working in support of the medical practice represented on this survey;

  • The FTE for both full-time and part-time support staff. To compute FTE, add the number of full-time (1.0 FTE) support staff to the FTE count for the part-time support staff. A full-time support staff employee works whatever number of hours the practice considers to be the minimum for a normal workweek, which could be 37.5, 40, 50 hours or some other standard. To compute the FTE of a part-time support staff employee, divide the total hours worked in an average week by the number of hours that your practice considered to be a normal workweek. An employee working 30 hours compared to a normal workweek of 40 hours would be 0.75 FTE (30 divided by 40 hours). An employee working full-time for three months during a year would be 0.25 FTE (3 divided by 12 months). A support staff employee cannot be counted as more than 1.0 FTE regardless of the number of hours worked; and

  • The allocated FTE where the practice consists of multiple legal entities. For example, an MSO managing two medical practices and employing one billing clerk who devotes an equal amount of time to each practice would add 0.5 FTE to the total FTE count in “Patient accounting,” FTE column, for each managed practice.

Do not Include:

  • The FTE of contracted support staff, which should be reported as “Total contracted support staff,” FTE column.

Include in Cost questions:

  • Salaries, bonuses, incentive payments, honoraria, and profit distributions;

  • Voluntary employee salary deductions used as contributions to 401(k), 403(b), or Section 125 plans;

  • Compensation paid to the total FTE count reported in the FTE column;

  • Compensation for all support staff employed by all of the legal entities working in support of the medical practice represented on this survey;

  • The allocated support staff cost where the practice consists of multiple legal entities. For example, an MSO managing two medical practices and employing one billing clerk who devotes an equal amount of time to each practice would add 50 percent of the one billing clerk’s compensation to the total cost of “Patient accounting,” Cost column, for each managed practice; and

  • Compensation for both full-time and part-time employed support staff.

Do not Include:

  • Advanced practice provider cost, which is reported in the Provider section, Cost column;

  • Any benefits for employed support staff, which should be reported as “Total employed support staff benefit cost,” Cost column;

  • Expense reimbursements; or

  • Any benefits or the cost of contracted support staff who do not work for any of the legal entities that comprise the medical practice. These costs should be reported as “Total contracted support staff,” Cost column.

General administrative [5110-5111, 5117, 5210 5211, 5217]11

FTE and cost of general administrative and practice management staff, supporting secretaries, and administrative assistants.
Include:

  • FTE and cost of executive staff such as administrator, assistant administrator, chief financial officer, medical director, site/branch/office managers, human resources, marketing, credentialing, and purchasing department staff.

Do not Include:

  • FTE and cost of directors of departments listed separately on this survey. Examples include information technology director, medical records director, laboratory director, and radiology director. Such FTE and cost should be reported in “Information technology,” “Medical records,” “Clinical laboratory,” or “Radiology and imaging,” as appropriate; or

  • Credentialing staff as they pertain to managed care departments, such FTE and cost should be reported in “Managed care administrative.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Patient accounting [5112, 5212]11

FTE and cost of patient accounting (billing and collections) staff, such as department supervisor, billing/accounts receivable manager, financial counselor, coding, charge entry, insurance, billing, collections, payment posting, refund, adjustment, and cashiering staff.

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

General accounting [5113, 5213]11

FTE and cost of general accounting office staff, such as department supervisor, controller, financial accounting manager, accounts payable, payroll, bookkeeping, and financial accounting input staff.

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Managed care administrative [5114, 5214]11

FTE and cost of managed care administrative staff, such as supporting secretaries and administrative assistants.
Include:

  • HMO/PPO contract administrators, case management staff, actuaries, managed care medical directors and managed care marketing, quality assurance, referral coordinators, utilization review, credentialing staff, patient care coordinators and case managers.

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Information technology [5115, 5215]11

FTE and cost of information technology staff, such as data processing, computer programming, telecommunications staff, EHR or initiative compliance specialists, department director or manager.

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Housekeeping, maintenance, security [5116, 5216]11

FTE and cost of housekeeping, maintenance, and security staff.
Do not Include:

  • FTE and cost of parking attendants if parking generates revenue, which is reported as “Nonmedical revenue” in the Revenue section. The cost of parking attendants should be included as “Nonmedical cost.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

*Total business operations support staff FTE and Cost

Total the FTE and cost for “General administrative,” “Patient accounting,” “General accounting,” “Managed care administrative,” “Information technology” and “Housekeeping, maintenance, security.” Provide this total even if you are unable to provide all the values requested in previous questions.
 

Medical receptionists [5121, 5221]11

FTE and cost of medical receptionist staff, such as switchboard operators, schedulers, and appointment staff.
Do not include:

  • FTE and cost of medical receptionists who worked exclusively in the departments of clinical laboratory, radiology and imaging, or other ancillary departments. Such FTE and cost is included in “Clinical laboratory,” “Radiology and imaging,” and “Other medical support services.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Medical secretaries, transcribers [5122, 5222]11

FTE and cost of medical secretaries and transcribers.
Do not include:

  • FTE and cost of medical secretaries and transcribers who worked exclusively in the departments of clinical laboratory, radiology and imaging, or other ancillary departments. Such FTE and cost is included in “Clinical laboratory,” “Radiology and imaging,” and “Other medical support services.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Medical records [5123, 5222]11

FTE and cost of medical records staff such as medical records clerks and department director or manager.

Do not include:

  • FTE and cost of medical records and coding staff who worked exclusively in the departments of clinical laboratory, radiology and imaging or other ancillary departments. Such FTE and cost is included in “Clinical laboratory,” “Radiology and imaging,” and “Other medical support services.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Other administrative support (5750)99 / [5124, 5224]11

FTE and cost of other administrative staff such as shipping and receiving, cafeteria, mailroom, and laundry staff.


 

*Total front office support staff FTE and Cost [5120, 5220]11

Total the FTE and cost of “Medical receptionists,” “Medical secretaries, transcribers,” “Medical records” and “Other administrative support.” Provide this total even if you are unable to provide all the values requested in previous questions.
 

Registered nurses [5131, 5231]11

FTE and cost of registered nurse staff and registered nurses working as frontline managers or lead nurses including home health nurses.
Do not Include:

  • FTE and cost of advanced practice providers such as nurse practitioners, certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs), or nurse midwives, who are included in “Total advanced practice provider” FTE and cost; or

  • FTE and cost of registered nurses who worked exclusively in the departments of clinical laboratory, radiology and imaging or other ancillary departments. Such FTE and cost is included in “Clinical laboratory,” “Radiology and imaging,” and “Other medical support services.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Licensed practical nurses [5132, 5232]11

FTE and cost of licensed practical nurses.

Do not include:

  • FTE and cost of licensed practical nurses who worked exclusively in the departments of clinical laboratory, radiology and imaging, or other ancillary departments. Such FTE and cost is included in “Clinical laboratory,” “Radiology and imaging,” and “Other medical support services.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Medical assistants, nurse’s aides [5133, 5134, 5233, 5234]11

FTE and cost of medical assistants and nurse's aides.

Do not include:

  • FTE and cost of medical assistants and nurse aides who worked exclusively in the departments of clinical laboratory, radiology and imaging, or other ancillary departments. Such FTE and cost is included in “Clinical laboratory,” “Radiology and imaging,” and “Other medical support services.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

*Total clinical support staff FTE and Cost [5130, 5230]11

Total the FTE and cost answers of “Registered nurses,” “Licensed practical nurses” and “Medical assistants, nurse’s aides.” Provide this total even if you are unable to provide all the values requested in the previous questions.
 

Clinical laboratory [5142, 5242]11

The clinical laboratory and pathology department conducts procedures for clinical laboratory and pathology CPT codes 80047-89398, 36415, and 36416.

Include:

  • FTE and cost of support staff such as nurses, phlebotomists, secretaries and technicians; and

  • FTE and cost of department director or manager.

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Radiology and imaging [5141, 5241]11

Film library staff and the diagnostic radiology and imaging department conduct procedures for diagnostic radiology CPT codes 70010-76499, diagnostic ultrasound CPT codes 76506-76999, and diagnostic nuclear medicine CPT codes 78012-78999, echocardiography CPT codes 9330393355, noninvasive vascular diagnostic studies CPT codes 93880-93998, and electrocardiography CPT codes 93000-93042.

Include:

  • FTE and cost of support staff such as nurses, secretaries, and technicians; and

  • FTE and cost of department director or manager.

Do not include:

  • FTE and staff cost for radiation oncology CPT codes 77261-77799 or therapeutic nuclear medicine CPT codes 79005-79999. Such FTE and cost is included as “Other medical support services.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

Other medical support services [5143-5160, 5243-5260]11

FTE and cost of support staff in any ancillary services department other than “Clinical laboratory” and “Radiology and imaging”.
Include:

  • FTE and cost of support staff who provide assistance to patients, such as patient relations staff or lay counselors;

  • FTE and cost of support staff such as nurses, secretaries, technicians, physical therapy aides and assistants in ancillary services departments such as physical therapy, optical, ambulatory surgery, radiation oncology, therapeutic nuclear medicine, clinical research, pharmacists, and pharmacy support staff; and

  • FTE and cost of the department directors and managers in these ancillary services departments.

Do not Include:

  • Advanced practice providers such as nurse practitioners, physician’s assistants and physical therapists. These providers should be reported in “Advanced practice provider compensation,” “Advanced practice provider benefit cost,” and “Total advanced practice providers.”

Position titles include (but not limited to):

 

*Total ancillary support staff FTE and Cost [5140, 5240]11

Subtotal the FTE and cost for “Clinical laboratory,” “Radiology and imaging” and “Other medical support services.” Provide this total even if you are unable to provide all the variables requested in previous questions.
 

*Total employed support staff FTE and Cost [5100, 5200]11

Add “Total business operations support staff,” “Total front office support staff,” “Total clinical support staff,” and “Total ancillary support staff” answers.
 

*Total employed support staff benefit cost [5170, 5180, 5300-5460]11

The "Total employed support staff benefit cost” column should represent the total benefits for the FTE count of all employed support staff reported in “Total employed support staff” FTE column.
Include:

  • Employer’s share of Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA), payroll and unemployment insurance taxes;

  • Employer’s share of health, disability, life, and workers’ compensation insurance;

  • Employer payments to defined benefit and contribution, 401(k), 403(b), and nonqualified retirement plans;

  • Deferred compensation paid or expensed during the year;

  • Dues and memberships in professional organizations, state, and local license fees;

  • Allowances for education, professional meetings, travel, and automobile; and

  • Entertainment, country/athletic club membership, travel for spouse.

Do not Include:

  • Voluntary employee salary deductions used as contributions to 401(k) and 403(b) plans; or

  • Expense reimbursements.
     

Total contracted support staff (temporary)  [5500-5570]11

Contracted support staff represents all the staff hired on a contract basis, not employed by any of the legal entities that comprise the medical practice. The utilization of contracted support staff occurs when the medical practice (including all the associated legal entities that comprise the medical practice) decides not to hire support staff as employees to conduct the ongoing support
staff activities described in the “Staff” section. Instead, the practice contracts to have these full-time and/or ongoing activities conducted by contracted staff.

A defining characteristic of contracted support staff is that the hours worked (hence the FTE) by the contracted support staff are easily identified and reported. If the hours worked are not easily identified and reported, then the FTE count cannot be accurately reported and the cost for such
services should be reported on the appropriate line within the “General operating cost” section. One example of this type of cost would be purchased services for billing and collections activities. When a practice decides to hire a billing company to conduct billing activities that the practice decides not to fulfill with practice employees, it is often not possible to track the hours that the billing company devotes to the given practice. Such cost should be reported as “Billing and collections purchased services.”
Include:

  • Temporary staff working for temporary agencies; and

  • Traveling nurses.

Do not Include:

  • The FTE and cost of support staff employed directly by the practice or any of the legal entities comprising the medical practice. Such FTE counts and related costs are included in the “Staff” section, FTE and Cost columns; or

  • The FTE and cost for legal, accounting, management, and/or other consultants for services performed on a one time or sporadic basis. The FTE counts for these types of consultants are not reported on this portion of the survey. The costs for these types of consultants are reported as “Legal fees,” “Consulting fees,” and/or “Outside professional fees.”

In the case where the exact FTE count is unknown, use your best judgment to estimate the FTE counts for “Total contracted support staff.” One method is to estimate the annual total hours worked by all the “contracted support staff” and divide that estimate by the total number of hours that the practice expects one full-time support staff employee to work during the course of one year.
 

*Total support staff

For “Total support staff” FTE, add answers “Total employed support staff” and “Total contracted support staff,” FTE column.

For “Total support staff” cost, add answers “Total employed support staff,” “Total employed support staff benefit cost,” and “Total contracted support staff,” Cost column.

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