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Building Financial Resilience in GP Practices: Tailored Management Reporting

ByDave Stopher

Apr 15, 2024
In the rapidly evolving healthcare landscape, General Practitioner (GP) practices find themselves at a crossroads. The uncertainties surrounding NHS funding and changes to the General Medical Services (GMS) contract have made it imperative for these practices to build robust financial resilience. But how can GP practices navigate these turbulent waters and ensure their long-term sustainability? The answer lies in the effective use of tailored management reporting.
The Bedrock of Financial Stability
At the heart of financial resilience is the ability to understand and manage financial performance continuously. This is where management accounts come into play. They serve as a vital tool, allowing GP practices to monitor their financial health against predefined budgets throughout the fiscal year. The goal is to mitigate any unwelcome surprises at the year’s end, ensuring that the practice remains on solid financial ground.
Tailored management reports take this a step further by providing practices with detailed insights into their income and expenses. Such customised reports are not just numbers on a page; they are a compass that guides financial decision-making, enabling practices to steer through the fog of financial uncertainty with confidence.
Tailored Reporting: A Beacon in the Complex NHS Landscape
The complexity of the NHS contract necessitates a nuanced approach to financial management. Generic reports simply won’t cut it. GP practices require detailed, bespoke management reports that shed light on the intricacies of their financial operations. These reports offer a clear view of the practice’s income streams and outgoings, fostering a level of financial oversight that generic reports cannot match.
Steering Towards Strategic Financial Decision-Making
The journey towards financial resilience is not just about monitoring current financial status but also about making informed, strategic decisions for the future. Real-time financial monitoring, facilitated by management reports, allows practices to identify areas of concern early on.
Iwona Silverio, Client Portfolio Manager at Monahans, a Chartered Accountant with decades of experience in the Healthcare sector, said “The biggest advantage in the collection and monitoring of real-time information is to better inform financial decision making and help clients to anticipate potential challenges.
For example, a practice monitoring finances will know during the year if locum costs are higher than expected – this gives the practice crucial information during the year – can they make efforts to reduce this cost moving forwards? Can they change their policy on when locums are booked? Can the practice increase partner or salaried GP sessions which may be more cost effective? It may be that nothing can be done to reduce locum costs but by having the knowledge during the year, practices can make choices during the year rather than experiencing unexpected and disappointing year end profits.”
Laying the Foundations for Long-term Resilience
The ultimate goal of tailored management reporting is not just to survive the present but to thrive in the future. By offering GP practises a window into their financial world, these reports equip them to plan strategically, anticipating challenges and seizing opportunities. This proactive approach to financial monitoring and reporting is the cornerstone of long-term organisational resilience.
In conclusion, the path to financial resilience for GP practices is paved with the insights provided by tailored management reporting. By embracing these tools, practices can not only navigate the complexities of today’s healthcare environment but also position themselves for success in the years to come. With the right information at their fingertips, the future of GP practices looks not just secure, but bright.