The Medical Group Management Association and the Healthcare Financial Management Association last week revealed more plans for the strategic alliance they formed in August.
At a press conference in Chicago, leaders of the two organizations said members of both groups will be better served through several common projects.
"What we are creating is something that is stronger than the sum of its total parts," said Thomas L. Adams, MGMA executive vice president.
The associations plan initiatives in five areas:
They will update the MGMA's Chart of Accounts to make it "the standard for accounting structure in the ambulatory-care industry." The new accounting standards are expected to help medical groups handle prepaid or capitated health plans.
They will work on advocacy projects together in Washington and the states for common policy goals.
They want to provide networking opportunities for members at the state and local levels.
Both groups have certification programs. They will pursue a financial specialty examination for group practice management.
They will develop software tools for accounting, financial and operational efficiencies.
Richard L. Clarke, HFMA president, said his organization will try to help physician groups find access to capital for building provider networks and other projects.
The HFMA, based in Westchester, Ill., represents 34,000 financial management professionals in healthcare. The Englewood, Colo.-based MGMA represents 6,500 group practices and 17,500 practice managers. About 6% of MGMA and HFMA members belong to both organizations.
The idea for the alliance came after the MGMA announced a strategic partnership last year with the American Medical Association.