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AAFP: Family Docs Report Potential Misuse of MGMA Data

Collaborative statement released to clarify how employers should use data from MGMA annual survey

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Reports from family physicians have been received that employers may be misusing survey data to set higher compensation rates for general internal physicians than for family physicians, according to a report published by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

The AAFP and Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) have collaborated to provide guidance for how to use the annual MGMA Physician Compensation and Production Survey data.

Noting that some AAFP members have expressed concern over potential misuse of the MGMA data, the report states that MGMA survey data is descriptive rather than prescriptive. The compensation per relative value unit (RVU) data are often misused and misinterpreted. The compensation per RVU is generally higher for general internal medicine than for family medicine, but this is due to variables such as multiple conversion factors that vary by type of service provided and payer mix. A template letter is provided for family physicians who suspect their employers are misusing MGMA survey data for contract and salary negotiations.

The information from the MGMA surveys "is not intended to be used for the purpose of limiting competition, restraining trade, or reducing or stabilizing salary or benefit levels," according to a joint statement.

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