Springing into Spring: Health IT Trends to Look For
After a long, cold, winter, the melting snow and warmer weather means spring is finally here. The health IT industry has been busy this past winter with the HIMSS17 conference and the stalling of the GOP health care bill, to name a few. At HIMSS, healthcare leaders were busy discussing machine learning, analytics and population health and sharing new technologies aimed at improving patient care. After the GOP healthcare bill was pulled amid widespread reports that they did not have enough votes to pass it, Republicans say repealing the ACA is back on the agenda, adding to the uncertainty that has faced the industry under the new administration. To kick off the new season, here are a few of the trends that we are keeping an eye out for:
- Precision Medicine – Despite concerns regarding the overall effectiveness of interoperability and big data, a survey by NEJM Catalyst Insights Report found that precision medicine data will have a major influence on the industry in the coming years. This new approach to treatment will be used to eliminate medication errors, improve care, treat disease and help provide feedback for physicians.
- Leveraging Big Data to Solve Population Health Issues - The future of healthcare lies in data but its application is constantly shifting. With the data generated from EHRs and wearables, organizations are faced with growing amounts of useful insight, that in many cases will go unleveraged due to silos or a lack of analytics tools. Throughout the winter, we saw how communities are leveraging data to tackle the opioid crisis, pathologists are using it to detect breast cancer and providers are using it to reduce waste. We will be keeping an eye out to see how organizations will continue to leverage big data to draw insights and uncover new tools.
A Year in Review: Our Top Health IT Innovation Stories from 2016
2016 was a major year for healthcare innovation. From cross state big data collaborations to the recent passing of the 21st Century Cures Act, here are a few of our top healthcare innovation stories from the past year:
- Healthcare is Having an Ernest Hemingway Moment – From virtual reality to cloud-based systems, healthcare organizations are looking to continue progressing innovation forward. Tom Sullivan of Healthcare IT News explores how health systems across the country are using emerging technologies to encourage patient engagement.
- “Big Data Spokes” Tackle Population Health with IoT, Informatics – Following a $10 million grant from the National Science Foundation, four academic institutions across the nation will work together to better utilize big data analytics. Jennifer Bresnick of HealthIT Analytics shares how this collaboration will improve data sharing, help develop best practices and open new opportunities for data-driven public health.
- CMS releases MACRA final rule: 10 things to know – Nearly 2,400 pages in length, the final MACRA rule aims to reduce the administrative burden on physicians so they can focus on care improvement and the transition to VBC. Emily Rappleye of Becker’s Hospital Review highlights the top 10 things to know about the new rule.
- ICD-10 turns 1: Was it so bad? – As of October, ICD-10 codes reached their first birthday and, surprisingly, the transition turned out to be better than expected. Meg Bryant of Healthcare Dive looks at how the implementation fared over the past year.
- $6.3 Billion Measure Aims to Cure Ailing Health Care Policies – In a rare bipartisan vote, the long awaited 21st Century Cures Act was officially signed into law. Jennifer Steinhauer and Sabrina Tavernise of The New York Times explore how the boost in federal funding for research efforts in cancer and other diseases will also support health IT efforts across the country.
With robots entering the healthcare space, a new administration and the continued prospect for new medical advances in the health IT community, we are helping ensure that our customers are ready for this changing landscape. If you want to learn more about how MedeAnalytics can help your organization excel in the new year, check out our solutions page.
How Addressing Uncompensated Care and Keeping Patients Happy Can Save Millions of Dollars
With the shift from quantity to quality, healthcare is undergoing a period of rapid change. High-deductible plans continue to rise and the American Medical Association reported that managing healthcare costs are becoming a challenge for patients. Not only are patients paying more, but they often don’t understand their financial obligation after receiving care which contributes to the bad debt hospitals acquire. In 2012 alone, U.S. hospitals provided $45.9 billion in uncompensated care and in 2014, almost six percent of all providers’ gross revenue was written off as bad debt. To address this rising challenge, healthcare organizations need to establish transparency between health systems and patients.
Last week we hosted a webinar to share how our client, McLeod Health, has addressed the challenges of uncompensated care through the use of data analytics. Kelvin Young, corporate director of patient registration at McLeod Health, and Cole Hooper, associate vice president of product management at MedeAnalytics, discussed McLeod’s journey to value through the use of our Patient Access solution which enabled McLeod to achieve the following:
- Increase POS collections and overall reimbursement
- Improve patient satisfaction through clearer collection practices
- Gain visibility into the complete account lifecycle
- Enhance efficiency in patient access and the business office
HFMA ANI 2016 – Brookwood Baptist Shares their Success with Value-Based Care
Two weeks ago, MedeAnalytics and client Brookwood Baptist Health attended HFMA ANI 2016 in Las Vegas, NV between June 26-29, 2016. The event draws more than 5,000 healthcare finance industry professionals, from executive leaders to mid-level professionals. This year, we saw a common theme bubble to the surface: approach healthcare in a bigger way to ensure greater financial success with more collaboration and clearer navigation towards value-based healthcare. Our client Brookwood Baptist Health also spoke to these themes, specifically how their partnership with MedeAnalytics has allowed them to take a synergistic approach towards value-based care during a major transition period.
During their session, Switching EHRs and Maintaining a Strong Revenue Cycle, Rosh Plugge, Executive Director of Revenue Cycle, and Pete Welch, M.B.A, Senior Revenue Analyst, outlined the need for a strategic partner that could help them apply analytics during their electronic health records (EHRs) transition to pinpoint trends, analyze root cases and resolve issues encountered with the move. By bridging gaps in their EHRs with analytics, the provider was able to have all reporting available after the first month following go-live. Brookwood was also able to meet the demands of population health and value-based reimbursement, all while maintaining patient satisfaction and HCAHPS scores.
Measuring Quality in Patient Access
For years, relatively little attention was paid to patient access. However, with today’s consumer-driven healthcare environment, where the focus on patient satisfaction has become a competitive advantage, ensuring positive outcomes in the patient access department is critical.
The Advisory Board released a survey recently highlighting hospital executives desire to meet consumer expectations and improve patient engagement. In order to develop a successful patient-centric strategy, healthcare organizations need to define and address the challenges in achieving high quality patient access.