The Role of Real Estate in Today’s Healthcare
It wasn’t long ago that ‘The Doc’ was available to see his patients at his office in the middle of town.
Deliverability was simply a matter of proximity of one door to another. While the concept remains the same, the process of deliverability has evolved.
In today’s world of ‘Value Healthcare’, and the evolution of the American Care Act, independent practitioners find themselves dependent on Health Systems that can absorb the ever increasing costs of affiliated medical provider care. In order to do so, Health Systems are deploying varied levels of efficiency to counter balance diminished insurance reimbursements and copays.
Real estate for the Health Systems is a major line item on the balance sheet as it relates to deliverability. Competition has also played a role with Patient First, CVS and Walgreens using location and branding to create their own deliverability for common ailments. Both Health Systems and practitioners find themselves in an increasingly competitive environment for patients. The goal for all is to deliver the highest level of care quickly and efficiently. In order to do this, a number of Health Systems have assembled independent practitioners and consolidated them into regional health centers.
Deliverability has become a destination.
Patients can arrange for a combination of visits and care at one site. Many of these health centers are designed for comfort and convenience with work stations, lounge chairs, cable television, internet access as well as options for food and drink.
Destination and consolidation have afforded the Health Systems the ability to combine expenses and overhead creating greater efficiency for deliverability. One of the more expensive modern day instruments is software itself. Epic is an example of one of the software systems used to manage patient care. It has become the modern day stethoscope, the lap top is usually the first instrument the practitioner will reach for in this day of healthcare.
The real estate itself is the conduit for deliverability. It needs to be adaptable in a day and age where location remains the constant common denominator. Health Systems need to refine their real estate practices for efficiency and sustainability.
The updated FASB rules for 2019 will also play a major role in Health System real estate practices. Owning versus leasing, as well as length of lease term, need to be carefully considered and filtered within the long term strategy for the Health System.
Simply put, Health Systems are no longer the golden calf of real estate. Deliverability will require careful, strategic deployment for return and subsequent maximized patient care.