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Medical Group Management Association

Member Network

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Tap into an expansive network of professionals and diverse resources to grow your career, influence change and achieve your practice management goals.

Frank Ford, FACMPE

MGMA provides the infrastructure and assistance as you progress through your career.

Frank FordVolunteer Roles: 2019 Physician Contract Work Group and the 2019-2020 Body of Knowledge Oversight Committee
Job: Retired President of Ford, Zipf & Associates

Why did you decide to get involved with MGMA?

I came from hospital administration and was previously a member of both ACHE and AHA.  When I got into practice management a friend recommended MGMA as the place to continue my education and professional development.  I then joined ACMPE at my first Annual Conference.

Why do you stay involved with MGMA as a volunteer in retirement?

I’m able to continue giving back to the profession through volunteering.  The knowledge and experience I’ve gained through over 30 years in practice management can still be useful to others.  Also, I’ve always greatly valued the friends I’ve made through my association with MGMA and the College.  When deciding to retire one of the drawbacks was giving up those relationships.

How did you decide that practice management was the career for you?

I didn’t like the politics of hospital administration and was drawn to the fact that in practice management you need a very broad-based knowledge as opposed to the siloed career approach in hospitals.  Of course, my hospital background lead me to a career of leading practice management operations within health systems. So, back to politics, but I got better at it with age and experience.

What is the best tip you give to people who are just starting a career in practice management?

I’m a big believer in education and professional development.  Along with that is networking.  To that end, I think that it’s critical to continue your education and obtain certifications that demonstrate your knowledge.  MGMA provides the infrastructure and assistance as you progress through your career.  Attend state or national conventions.  Join the college and take the exam.  Don’t worry if you don’t pass it the first time, it only shows you where you need to learn more.  Don’t give up.  Stretch yourself and become more rounded professionally.  Once you become board certified, don’t rest on your laurels, proceed to Fellowship.  Fellowship demonstrates to physicians your commitment and proven knowledge base.  It sets you apart from your peers as you progress in the profession.  Finally, volunteer and give back to the professional community.  Again, it’s the best way to make friends across the country and develop your network.  The people you meet along the way will be great friends you can count on.  They understand what you are going through at any time in ways that your family and co-workers or bosses can’t.

What is your top tip for maintaining work/life balance?

My wife would tell you that I’m the worst person to ask this question.  If you’re looking for a profession where you can work a 40-hour week and leave it all behind when you go home, I’d suggest practice management isn’t for you.  Alternatively, it can provide a very rewarding career where you can have a major impact on your organization (no matter how large), your community, and your profession as a whole.  It is work worth doing and can have far reaching impact on not only the people you work with but the patients and communities you serve.  So, for me, the work/life balance is the impact that the work has had on the value of my life.
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