We keep tabs on every zig and zag of the constantly changing health care environment, but there are some insights you just shouldn’t miss. Each month, we ask our national partners to share their favorites across some of health care's most pressing issues: health system growth, care variation reduction, and revenue cycle management. Subscribe to At the Helm to make sure you don't miss a post.
From Rob Barras: What my brother's fatal hospital stay taught me about EHR optimization
“I've been in health care IT for more than 25 years, but no amount of experience can prepare you for a personal health crisis. Yet, there are lessons in these moments that can teach about health care and the role of technology.”
—Rob Barras, Senior Vice President
Provider consolidation is at an all-time high, with 19% growth in consolidation activities for the past 10 years. And this contributes to unwarranted variation in how care is delivered.
In this post, Rob Barras shares how his brother's tragic hospital stay showed him that the complexities of patient care can lead to bad outcomes for even the best care teams—and why it's essential for organizations to optimize the technologies at their disposal to simplify the process.
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More on care variation reduction
From Jim Lazarus: You're probably leaving $22 million on the table. Here are 4 things to do about it.
“We know that hospitals have seen healthy margins the past few years despite reimbursement cuts—largely as a result of successfully containing costs and the Affordable Care Act's coverage expansions. But at the same time, revenue cycle performance has lagged and the cost to maintain even flat performance has ticked upward.”
—Jim Lazarus, Managing Director
Advisory Board's financial research team just finished a powerful analysis that shows the average 350-bed hospital leaves $22 million in revenue capture on the table by not following best practices in four key areas: denial write-offs, bad debt, cost to collect, and contract yield.
So how do organizations improve their revenue cycle performance and capture that potential revenue? To start, leaders must respond to the four market forces of our time.
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More on revenue cycle optimization
From John Deane: Improve care vs. increase margins? Why your medical group shouldn't make that choice
“PEV—physician enterprise value—provides leadership the ability to prioritize initiatives and to make meaningful and informed decisions with an understanding of comprehensive health system impact. PEV is, in some cases, the strongest indicator of medical group performance.”
—John Deane, Chairman
One of our partner organizations was focused on getting to a more financially sustainable medical group to support population health and care management investments. But after nearly two years of initiatives to reduce physician operating losses—and despite strong efforts to squeeze out unwarranted expenses, maximize productivity, optimize staffing, and improve the revenue cycle—they only achieved half of their savings target of $5 million.
Leaders at the organization realized that to achieve a more sustainable health system overall, they had to view the medical group more broadly within the comprehensive patient delivery network. To do it, they began to use PEV analytics to drill into gaps along the care continuum.
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More on health system growth
Electronic Medical Records Strategy,
Personal Health Records,