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Outside Referrals Are a No-No.. & It’s Harming Our Health

Daniel Paull MD lets us in on a secret: hospitals won't let doctors refer out.

September 14, 2023

A lesser known fact about working in hospital systems: they strongly discourage referrals outside of the hospital system.

Legally, they can’t tell a doctor that they can’t refer out, but they do anyways.

 

One example is that one of my orthopedic colleagues got a job at one hospital system.

He wanted to refer to a spine surgeon in town who he knew to be excellent, who was in a different system.

 

 

So he started to refer to him.

Soon, he had a meeting with administration who told him that he had to stop doing that, and only refer to the spine surgeons in his hospital.

Sometimes hospitals will make physically creating an outside referral very difficult from a systems standpoint.

Their EMR is built purposely to make this difficult, to avoid “leakage”.

 

A hospital's EMR is built purposely to make this difficult, to avoid "leakage".
- Daniel Paull MD
SoMeDocs

 

As hospital systems gobble up more practices, this problem only gets worse.

You have primary care docs that have been referring to the same surgical practice for over a decade, only to get gobbled up and never send a referral their way again.

As a physician, you should be referring your patients to the doc who will do the best job and is the best fit, not who the hospital tells you to refer to.

 

VC: Dana Corriel, MD

 

VC: ponpocoponty, curated by Dana Corriel, MD

All opinions published on SomeDocs-Mag are the author’s and do not reflect the official position of SoMeDocs, its staff, editors. SoMeDocs is a magazine built with the safety of free expression and diverse perspectives in mind. For more information, or to submit your own opinion, please see our submission guidelines or email opmed@doximity.com. Do you have a compelling personal story you’d like to see published on SoMeDocs? Find out what we’re looking for here and submit your writing, or send us a pitch.

All opinions published on SomeDocs-Mag are the author’s and do not reflect the official position of SoMeDocs, its staff, editors. SoMeDocs is a magazine built with the safety of free expression and diverse perspectives in mind. Do you have a compelling personal story you’d like to see published on SoMeDocs? Submit your own article now here.

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