Moneyball Comes to Medicine

January 19, 2016

By Jacob Vugrinac, Director of Business Development

  • Paul DePodesta, the inspiration behind the movie Moneyball, also works in medicine
  • Data analytics is the standard by which all efficient businesses measure themselves
  • DePodesta says traditions, operational structures & resistance to change stand in the way as medicine begins to explore the opportunity of data
  • Will these barriers prevent you from bringing data analytics to your billing practices?

As I a diehard Cleveland Browns fan*, I read with interest that the Cleveland Browns hired Paul DePodesta as their Chief Strategy Officer. Did you know this man, the inspiration behind Jonah Hill’s character in Moneyball, also applies his statistical method to medicine?

(*Unfortunately, I must admit that my first picture after being born is in a Browns jersey, so I really had little choice in being miserable every Sunday for the rest of my life.)

DePodesta is a Harvard grad who used his obsession with numbers and statistical analysis to change the baseball world forever.  He insisted that the information used in baseball (or lack thereof) to make personnel decisions was archaic and needed to be brought into the 21st century.

He knew that baseball was sitting on a stockpile of data and needed to mine through it to find the true indicators of success and failure.  As the movie and history show, DePodesta’s analytical approach was quite successful and was adopted in some fashion by all the teams in MLB.  But it wasn’t just baseball he knew he could change.

DePodesta is also an Assistant Professor of Bioinformatics for Scripps Translational Science Institute, where he applies his skills and insight to the emerging field of digital medicine.  DePodesta wanted to get into medicine because he was “looking to apply his skills and knowledge to a field with global impact.”  After he entered the world of healthcare, DePodesta released this statement:

“In disciplines as disparate as baseball, financial services, trucking and retail, people are realizing the power of data to help make better decisions. Medicine is just beginning to explore this opportunity, but it faces many of the same barriers that existed in those other sectors—deeply held traditions, monolithic organizational and operational structures, and a psychological resistance to change.”

My question to you is simple: are you allowing these barriers to hold back your pathology practice from operating as efficiently as possible?  Are you willing to use data analytics to find the inefficiencies in your billing cycle and see where you are leaving money on the table?

My favorite quote from Moneyball is when Brad Pitt (playing GM Billy Beane) is speaking with the head of his scouting department.  The scout is a baseball lifer who has done his job the same way, day in and day out, for 29 years.  He tells Pitt that he is destroying this team with dependence on analytics and data—that 150 years of baseball has proven that there is only one way you can build a team, only one way it can be done.  Pitt looks at the scout and says three words, “Adapt or Die.”  Will you be choosing the former or the latter?

Data analytics is the standard by which all efficient businesses measure themselves.  An unbiased, third-party audit of your billing will implement data analytics measures into your practice and ensure that you are both compliant and receiving every dollar that you deserve.

With that I ask you, are you ready to bring Moneyball to your pathology practice?  For questions or comments contact Jake at Vachette, 517-486-4262.

Who's reviewing revenue strategy with you at this time?

Are you billing all the correct CPT codes? You’d be surprised at what you might be missing. We will review your Fee Schedule/Charge Master at no cost.

That’s right. For free.

Share This