Health IT Headlines for 2018
2018 is already off to a strong start with the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference and StartUp Health Festival making headlines last week. As 2018 progresses, we want to share the trends that we expect to make headlines this year:
- Mega merger and acquisition activity – 2017 was filled with notable M&A activity including CVS and Aetna, Humana and Kindred and Optum and AMGA, to name a few. We expect to see this activity continue throughout 2018 as payers, providers, pharmacies and more look for ways to innovate, meet consumer demands and ultimately improve the quality and cost of care. Bruce Carver, associate vice president of payer services at MedeAnalytics, shares additional thoughts on recent merger activity in our blog.
- Consumerization of healthcare – With consumer-facing companies outside of the traditional healthcare space making moves to enter the industry (like Amazon, Apple and Google), consumer focus is critical. In 2018, this focus will only increase as consumers continue to demand user-friendly and easy to use platforms and interfaces. With all the competition in the industry, healthcare organizations will have to ensure they are keeping the consumer top of mind to stay ahead.
- Emerging technologies, like AI, will take the stage – In 2017, the adoption of AI technology made headlines across all industries, healthcare included, as organizations looked for innovative ways to leverage this new tool. As we head into 2018, companies like Google will continue to lead the pack by working with startups that are focused on finding ways to leverage this technology to improve care. We recently sat down with our CTO, Tyler Downs, to discuss trends in AI in healthcare and to hear how companies can use AI to power data and analytics.
- Clarity around industry uncertainty and policy changes – With the Trump administration and new faces in prominent health IT positions, the industry saw major shifts in 2017. According to a recent poll, healthcare is the one topic keeping both Democrats and Republicans up at night. 2018 will hopefully bring some clarity to the shifting tide as policies get ironed out and the state of Obamacare is decided. Regardless of these policy changes, providing patients with the best quality care should remain the industry’s top priority.
With all the new trends, emerging innovations, policy changes and more, is your organization prepared? Check out our solutions page to learn how MedeAnalytics can help you find success in the new year or contact us for additional information.
A Year In Review – Our Top Blogs from 2017
As snow starts to fall across the country and temperatures decline, winter and 2018 are here! 2017 was a busy year for the healthcare industry, from the new administration, ground breaking treatment advancements, the potential of artificial intelligence and most recently, the CVS and Aetna health merger. 2017 has also been a busy year for us at MedeAnalytics with new hires, customer announcements, speaking sessions and more! As we gear up for the new year, we’re looking back and highlighting our top three blog posts from 2017:
Meet MedeAnalytics’ new CEO, Paul Kaiser – In May, we were excited to announce our new CEO, Paul Kaiser, and in June, we had a chance to connect with him to learn more about his background, his company observations thus far and his future plans for the company. Our blog outlines the opportunities our CEO sees for Mede clients and how we can continue to support them amidst the everchanging healthcare landscape.
Enterprise Analytics and Beyond: A Q&A with our Vice President of Healthcare Provider Solutions – In March, our blog explored top provider concerns and offered insight from a Mede executive on the challenges that lay ahead and continued importance of investing in an Enterprise Analytics (EA) strategy. The post outlined proactive approaches for providers to take to ensure a seamless EA strategy, including training and educating clinical leadership, establishing realistic goals and empowering self-service. The post concluded by outlining how analytics’ role in reporting and identifying care and cost improvement opportunities will only grow in importance in the years ahead.
Mississippi Division of Medicaid Establishes Its Second Real-Time Clinical Data Exchange
Just last month, MedeAnalytics announced that the Mississippi Division of Medicaid (DOM) continued to build its data exchange within the state by connecting with the Hattiesburg Clinic (Hattiesburg). This is the second such clinical exchange and the second largest provider of Mississippi Medicaid beneficiaries. DOM built its first connection with the largest provider, the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC), which resulted in more than two million clinical summaries.
On Aug. 1, DOM successfully linked its beneficiary data-analysis system with Hattiesburg’s electronic health record (EHR). MedeAnalytics established DOM’s Medicaid Enterprise Master Patient Index (EMPI) back in 2014 as the core identity management system to allow easy management of a Medicaid patient’s longitudinal record. From there, they worked with DOM to standardize the Medicaid clinical EMPI to support a clinical data interface with its external stakeholders. Since the connection, both DOM and Hattiesburg have shared clinical information on 20,000 individual Medicaid patients, or 100,000 total shared clinical reports. Mississippi is the first state in the nation to establish this method for leveraging Medicaid technology and resources to directly benefit the doctor/patient experience.
Our very own CEO, Paul Kaiser, noted that: “DOM is a model example for Medicaid interoperability and how other agencies across the nation can leverage data to improve beneficiary care. MedeAnalytics has powered the Division’s first major provider data connection since 2016 and we look forward to continually supporting their efforts to expand connectivity with other providers across the state of Mississippi.”
The continued partnership is driving change in healthcare – from informed delivery of care to fueling overall value-based goals and progress. Looking ahead, DOM plans to continue integration with Medicaid-focused health systems, Health Information Exchanges and state and federal agencies. In fact, just last month they went live with their third clinical data exchange connection – Singing River Health System. For additional insights on how MedeAnalytics can help create connectivity, visit our solutions for state government page here. To learn more about our relationship with DOM see here and here.
Mississippi Division of Medicaid Remains the First to Establish Clinical Data Exchange
Each year, state Medicaid leaders from all over the country gather at the Medicaid Enterprise Systems Conference (MESC) to talk about the role of technology in meeting Medicaid and industry initiatives, like value-based care. Our client, Mississippi Division of Medicaid (DOM), spoke on their use of the consolidated clinical document architecture (C-CDA) standard to coordinate care and improve outcomes for their Medicaid beneficiaries. DOM is the first Medicaid agency in the nation to establish clinical data exchange with healthcare providers to directly benefit patients and physicians at the point of care. DOM has successfully exchanged data with University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) which resulted in more than two million clinical summaries. They also recently partnered with Hattiesburg Clinic and shared more than 100,000 clinical summaries.
To achieve this level of connectivity, DOM faced many challenges such as differences in vendor implementation of industry standards and providers’ use of unexpected medical codes. We connected with Ian Morris, Project Manager for the State of Mississippi DOM, to get his take on the overall lessons learned from this project and what fellow government organizations need to keep in mind for similar undertakings. Here are three key takeaways:
- Rely on Vendors’ Expertise – DOM would not be able to achieve this level of success without qualified vendors who have the expertise to develop and support the technology infrastructure and needs of real-time data exchange for hundreds of thousands of beneficiaries.
- Be Realistic – These projects are time and labor intensive and can take years to achieve. Be patient and work around your trading partner’s various schedules and technologies.
- Collaborate – Every stakeholder has different end-goals but these projects are a joint effort. This means that the conversation needs to move away from “my data” and towards “our data” to better coordinate care.
Looking ahead, DOM plans to continue integration with Medicaid-focused health systems, Health Information Exchanges and state and federal agencies. In fact, just last month they went live with their third clinical data exchange connection – Singing River Health System.
To learn more on UMMC and DOM’s success, read our announcement here.
CHIME Series: Are you making the most out of payer data?
This week, we continue to explore the results of our College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) survey and the need for various data sources. Our survey asked the question: Do you have a strong grasp on how to deal with payer data today? The results show that the majority (57 percent) of provider organizations do not.
As healthcare costs continue to rise and the industry focuses on value-based care, payers and providers need to look for ways to collaborate. This relationship is critical to payers as they leverage EHR data to better understand the cost of services rendered by the providers, measured against the outcome of care. For providers, combining both claims and clinical data can reveal some extremely valuable insights that can positively influence clinical decisions and drive down costs. However, many organizations still face challenges, including a lack of appropriate tools and an influx of data that is difficult to manage. This then creates a lag in insights being delivered to the right people at the right time. Bruce Carver, associate vice president of payer services, believes optimized organizational coordination can help address some of these issues.
Here are two of his best practices for making the most out of payer-provider collaboration:
- Trust Each Other– The first step in any relationship is trust. Are your goals aligned? Do you have redundant reporting or processes to get to these shared goals? Where can things be streamlined? This relationship will take time as both parties must work together to improve collaboration and ultimately gain more insights.
- Establish Communication Processes – Communication is also key and establishing efficient processes can help ensure that organizations are on the same page when issues arise. Some of these issues include, gaps in payer data or instances when payer data is not directly aligned with provider data.
Once organizations are aligned, payer data can be leveraged to better meet industry-wide demands of becoming more patient-centric and value-driven. This collaboration can also help providers manage medication adherence and establish cohesive strategies that address this issue.
As providers continue to struggle with a lack of organizational resources and payers begin to shrink in numbers, payer and provider collaboration will be more important than ever. Additionally, creating this collaboration can help both parties ensure that they are on the right track towards value. To see more results from our CHIME survey, access recent blogs here and here. If we can help get your organization on the right track, make sure to contact us.