After three days of absorbing remarkably rich content at the Medical Group Management Association annual meeting, I humbly offer the following profile of a group practice well-situated for the future:

* Connected Within: The group will have an ambulatory EHR, designed and used actively by physicians and their support staff. The EHR will work with practice management, billing, data mining and data reporting systems, along with other ancillary systems such as an in-house lab. Features in the EHR include standardized documentation screens linked to established vocabulary standards, such as LOINC, and SNOMED, with fluent translation to ICD-10. A patient portal is a must and it must be so well-designed that patients with chronic conditions visit it as often as a teenager visits Facebook (I exaggerate slightly as I realize no Web site could live up to that standard).

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