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The Growth Channel

The latest innovations in market strategy and share competition

Why some service lines grow—and others don’t

by Jacob Kahane December 18, 2014

In this year’s Market Strategy Summit, we highlight how price-sensitive consumers and cost-conscious referring physicians are becoming more scrutinizing health care shoppers. And while you undoubtedly need a consumer marketing strategy, referring physicians still hold the key for inflecting large market share shifts in our most profitable service lines.

In fact, a recent study showed that 80% of new specialist visits originated from a physician referral. These figures are even higher for our most profitable service lines, such as cardiology and neurology, which demonstrated referral rates above 85% and 91%, respectively.

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What’s better: 4,000 new patients or 1,000 repeat customers?

Madhavi Kasinadhuni December 12, 2014

If you’re putting together a strategic plan for 2015, chances are patient preferences are playing a big part in the discussion (if they’re not, here’s why they should be). Maybe you’re considering opening a retail clinic. Or maybe you’re going to expand your virtual visit program. No matter the strategy, you’ll want to see return on your patient-centered care investment. So how do you measure it?

Traditionally, you’d look at volumes. So let’s say you launch a retail clinic, and in the first year, the clinic sees 4,000 patients. Seems like your strategy is paying off, right? Not necessarily. Volumes don’t tell you whether you’ve attracted new patients, and they don’t tell you anything about patient loyalty or satisfaction. The extra visits could have come from 1,000 repeat customers—or 4,000 one-time patients.

So to see how well you’re meeting your goals, you need a new metric: patient share. And we have a tool that calculates it for your Medicare population.

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Five imaging technology trends that impact your purchasing strategy

by Vanessa Lo December 10, 2014

Planning for imaging technology purchases is becoming increasingly complex. On one hand, the growing, aging population and newly insured individuals are likely to demand more imaging services. On the other hand, accountable care models, appropriate utilization initiatives, and declining reimbursement for certain modalities have put downward pressure on imaging revenues.

As such, hospitals expect greater value out of their imaging technology purchases than ever before.

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mHealth spotlight: High-risk prenatal care on your smartphone

by Catherine Parkhurst December 8, 2014

Industry leaders gathered this morning at mHealth, the largest health care technology summit, so I wanted to share a recent example of how mobile technology is being used to empower patients and improve outcomes.

Wyoming legislators recently approved the use of DueDatePlus, a mobile app designed to guide patients through their pregnancy, in an effort to engage Medicaid patients in their prenatal care. The initiative aims to improve prenatal patient engagement for high risk patients to increase healthy outcomes and decrease downstream costs of high acuity, high risk care.

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Six key takeaways from Obesity Week 2014

by Vik Srinivasan December 4, 2014

This year’s second annual Obesity Week conference united bariatric surgeons, integrated health specialists and other providers involved in weight management, offering a glimpse of the evolving multidisciplinary collaboration among weight loss care providers.

Read on to get our six key takeaways from the conference.

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Obesity Week 2014: Is bariatric surgery about to shift outpatient?

by Vik Srinivasan December 2, 2014

With the decline of the lap band, band-only outpatient surgery centers have a revenue problem on their hands. These centers have long relied on the lower-risk profile of the procedure to drive bariatric volumes away from the hospital.

As the lap band business shrinks, some physician-owned surgery centers are exploring a controversial proposition: performing gastric bypass and sleeve gastrectomy operations on an outpatient (23-hour stay) basis.

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Obesity Week 2014: The lap band continues its slide

by Vik Srinivasan December 2, 2014

If last year’s Obesity Week signaled that the lap band was on the wane, this year’s conference suggested that the procedure has continued its slide.

Discussions at this year’s conference suggested the debate over whether the band is effective as a standalone procedure is largely over, with clinicians now exploring whether the procedure has efficacy as part of a two-step weight loss intervention that also combines the gastric bypass.

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Three critical elements for successful online scheduling

Omar Alvi December 1, 2014

An Intuit Health survey found that 81% of patients would schedule a doctor’s appointment online if they could, and 40% of patients would consider switching providers for online access.

Yet online scheduling platforms can be impersonal and confusing for patients, and physicians worry about losing control of their schedules. So how can provider organizations win over both patients and physicians?

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