Retina Consultants of Carolina [RCC] is a six physician, five location Retina Ophthalmology practice in Northwestern South Carolina. Since its founding in 1994, RCC has experienced steady growth – both in patient volume and clinical staff.

As RCC contemplated its continued growth trajectory, leadership questioned whether a new, larger clinic space might be necessary. However, before incurring this expense, RCC sought to review clinic operations to identify whether opportunities existed to optimize throughput and performance within its existing space.

The Solution

RCC engaged Knowledge Capital Group [KCG] to facilitate a clinic optimization assessment, including an extensive evaluation of staff and physician workflows, roles, responsibilities, and supportive technology. Leveraging the findings of this assessment, KCG then developed and implemented a comprehensive plan to mitigate workflow constraints, drive clinic throughput, and optimize patient and provider experience. This plan focused on three key areas:

1. CLINIC LAYOUT: Although many of RCC’s patients suffered from impaired vision and mobility, the clinic’s physical layout required that patients cycle through multiple screening, exam, imaging, and treatment rooms during a standard clinic visit. To drive throughput and eliminate unnecessary movement of these patients, KCG worked with leadership to reconfigure the existing clinic layout – converting underutilized clinical and administrative workspaces into multi-purpose rooms. Not only did this enable the practice to improve patient experience, it also allowed RCC to realize greater operational efficiencies, clinic capacity and revenue potential – leveraging space strategically to streamline clinical delivery processes.

2. SCHEDULING TEMPLATES: Even with enhancements in clinical space utilization, RCC’s scheduling templates prevented the practice from operating with maximum efficiency. KCG redesigned & implemented customized, physician-centric scheduling templates that supported nuances in physician practice style, patient characteristics, acuity, encounter type and procedure-based workflows. The result was a scheduling template that created a more appropriate and consistent length of appointment, reduced wait times and increased daily clinic capacity.

3. STRATEGIC STAFFING: Historically, clinic staff at RCC were organized by clinical modality. As a result, a single patient appointment might require touch points with multiple technicians – creating inefficient handoffs throughout the visit cycle. To realize the full potential of the redesigned clinic space and scheduling templates, KCG implemented a strategic staffing model that re-organized ophthalmic technicians into clinical ‘pods.’ In this new model, all technicians completed training across all clinical modalities to ensure competence and coverage at all times, while driving operational efficiencies.

About the Author
Anthony Powell
Managing Director

Anthony [Tony] Powell, Managing Director, oversees the firm’s strategic growth and client delivery functions. With over 25 years of experience as a Senior Strategy and Operations Executive, Powell partners with hospital and health system leaders to enhance performance through his expertise in strategy and organizational transformation efforts. Notable projects include: the design, development, and implementation of a state-wide, multi-hospital health system; the alignment and integration of a nationally recognized medical university’s hospital, faculty practice plan, and college of medicine; the alignment of a multi-hospital community system’s ambulatory network and clinical delivery capabilities; and the development of an AMC/Community Hospital affiliation and acquisition strategy.

Prior to joining KCG, Powell was a member of the executive team at Blackbaud [BLKB], a $1.1B publicly traded technology-solutions company serving the global nonprofit market, where he oversaw global professional services and enterprise sales. During his tenure, his divisions consistently grew at a CAGR of 40% with the company tripling in size. Preceding Blackbaud, Powell spent nearly a decade leading regional and national nonprofits’ development functions – his last role being at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC.

Powell’s leadership at KCG has received national recognition. KCG has been included in Inc. Magazine’s ‘Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies’ and has been featured in Consulting Magazine as both a ‘Firm to Watch’ and a ‘Fastest Growing Firm.’ In addition to his accomplishments at the firm, Powell also serves as an Associate in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Powell earned a BA in Economics and English from Allegheny College.