How Mount Sinai plans to grow revenue, cut costs

New York City-based Mount Sinai's operating income for the first six months of 2023 fell 14.3 percent year over year to $87.2 million, but the system is focusing on various initiatives to end the year with a projected net operating surplus of $153.1 million, according to recently released financial documents. 

Like many other health systems and businesses, Mount Sinai continues to address lingering financial challenges from the pandemic — both in terms of its effect on revenue growth as well as on expenses with inflation and the tight labor market. The system is focused on both revenue growth and expense management to ensure long-term success in an uncertain environment. 

Seven things to know:

1. A review of Mount Sinai's revenue cycle process revealed opportunities for revenue enhancement, including measures to: accelerate cash collection, mitigate denials, improve automation with Epic, enhance dashboards and streamline accountability. 

2. The system has bolstered investment in value-based contracting by increasing care navigation to minimize patient readmissions and expand risk-based Medicare contracting. 

3. Mount Sinai is focused on growing its pharmacy revenue in conjunction with program growth. 

4. Another area of focus for revenue growth — as well as for expense management — is reducing length of stay. Some measures include ensuring a robust inpatient social work and case management unit, centralizing discharge planning, launching post-discharge after-care clinics, and increasing weekend access to home care and skilled nursing.

5. Mount Sinai has implemented various expense controls, including a focus on reducing premium labor and overtime. As part of this initiative, the system will increase enrollment in its affiliated nursing school and help retain new graduates. 

6. The system renegotiated its contract with the New York State Nurses Association. It is reviewing space utilization to consolidate and eliminate leased space and ongoing contract review and outside services review. 

7. Mount Sinai is committed to identifying more opportunities to reduce in-patient length of stay as an efficient and cost effective method for creating additional capacity without adding additional units.

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