Innovative Physician Practice Group Tops Peers in Inpatient Medicine Performance

Apogee Hospitalist Physicians Achieved Superior Results Compared to Peers

PHOENIX, AZ--(Marketwired - June 04, 2015) - A first-quarter 2015 review of the average length of stay for hospitalized patients compared Apogee Physicians, a national hospitalist medicine group, to doctors treating patients with the same diagnoses in the same hospitals. Apogee Physicians, based in Phoenix, Arizona, reported their patients’ average length of stay was 31 percent lower, more than a day-and-a-half less, than patients treated by non-Apogee doctors for the same diagnoses. These results factor in the severity of the patient’s illness.

“Patients do not want to be in the hospital any longer than necessary, so we work diligently to get them treated and discharged as quickly as possible,” said Michael Gregory, MD, the Founder and Chairman of Apogee Physicians. “Our doctors practice with the highest quality standards as we compassionately provide patient care.”

It was also noted that Apogee patients returned to the hospital less often than patients treated by non-Apogee physicians.

“Medicare tracks how often patients are readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of their discharge,” Gregory said. “During the first quarter of this year, Apogee patients were readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of discharge 23 percent less often than the average hospitalized patient.”

One of the keys to the performance difference cited by Apogee is the appropriate use of “Clinical Pathways.”

“Our physicians used an evidence-based clinical pathway for the patient’s diagnoses in 97 percent of the eligible cases in the first quarter of this year,” said Gregory. “We stress that to be the best doctor you have to provide the best care. Appropriate use of Clinical Pathways is just one example of how we reinforce a best-practice culture within our group.”

Apogee physicians also routinely telephone patients within 48 hours of being discharged home. In the first three months of this year, they report nearly 20,000 of their patients were personally called by their treating physician at home after being discharged.

“Many times patients are shocked and surprised that their doctor actually calls to find out how they are doing,” said Gregory. “Our patient callback program makes a difference for our patients and the communities and hospitals where we practice.”

Gregory noted Apogee’s efforts to simplify the complex healthcare system patients must navigate and cited Apogee’s focus on improving communication between doctors and patients.

“We know it is a privilege to care for patients, and so we continually train our physicians on the best physician-patient communication practices,” he said. “These efforts pay off, as 99 percent of our patients who are surveyed note that their Apogee doctor answered their questions and communicated the plan of care. We are motivated by providing great care to people in need, and these results demonstrate the positive difference our doctors make in the lives of hospitalized patients.”

The complete results of the comparative study are available here.