MGMA AC 2008: Survey shows practices' expenses rising faster than revenue

At its annual show this week, the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) released its annual cost survey results for medical group practices--and, as in prior years, the trends don't look promising. The survey, which is based on numbers from 2007, found that operating expenses have increased faster than revenue in most practices. For example, multispecialty group practices had a 6.5 percent median operating cost increase, but only a 5.5 percent increase in median total revenue. Single-specialty practices faced similar discrepancies.

The survey also found several possible reasons why operating costs could have outpaced revenues. Drug supply costs went up by 17 percent in multispecialty groups, and specialty practices that depend on support staff (such as family practices) saw an increase in those expenses. Some groups saw decreases in professional liability costs, but cardiology in particular saw an 8 percent increase in malpractice insurance premiums.

To learn more about the survey:
- read this MGMA press release