HIMSS is well known for putting on the largest conference in the world dedicated to health IT. For the third year in a row, the state of Georgia – the only state to do so – has had a pavilion in the exhibit hall to showcase just a few of its many health IT companies. I had a chance on the HIMSS show floor to talk with Carol Henderson, Director of Health Sciences and Advanced Technologies at the Georgia Department of Economic Development, about the advent and growth of the pavilion, and why it sets such an example when it comes to showcasing Georgia as the nation’s capital of health IT.
It is that time again when the Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) publishes its Work Plan for the fiscal year outlining the areas of focus that it will investigate. The Work Plan highlights the OIG’s top priority to “fight fraud, waste and abuse”. The OIG’s strategic plan for fiscal year 2014 through 2018 specifically references using data analytics and risk assessments to identify suspected fraud, waste and abuse. The OIG also utilizes enforcement resources, including, but not limited to its partnership with the Department of Justice to impose penalties and potential criminal or administrative actions against individuals or entities who have allegedly committed fraud. All healthcare providers are subject to the OIG’s enforcement actions. Accordingly, it is imperative for each healthcare provider to establish an effective compliance program. Healthcare providers should utilize this Work Plan to establish what types of audits should be conducted during the year and to
ICD-10 is not a bad word but sometimes it sounds like one. The estimates for cost of transition from ICD-9 to ICDE-10 in a small practice is expected to range from over $50,000- $80,000 according to the Nachimson Advisors Studies. However, many providers continue to drag their feet hoping the cost will go away but, from all indications, it won’t this time. The deadline for implementation of the new codes is October 1, 2014.
ICD-10 is the International Classification of Disease tenth revision. This is a coding system created by the World Health Organization that codes for diseases, signs, symptoms, complaints, social circumstances, and other clinical descriptions that are documented in the medical records of hospital and ambulatory medical settings. Most people relate the coding to medical billing. When your physician accurately codes to support clinical services this can lead to better financial reimbursement for their medical practice. Most importantly it can correctly
Friend and fellow blogger, Wayne Oliver, give a harsh critique of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) / Obamacare. I felt compelled to respond and add my thoughts to the conversation, from the perspective of an executive working in the industry.
To begin, I think it fair to say that most people don’t fully understand the law. Last September, the Washington Post stated that 62 percent of Americans said that they don’t have the information they need to understand the law. Furthermore, most Americans, or 55%, disapprove of the way the President is handling the implementation of the new healthcare law. So, it’s not a surprise that there has been loud objections by pundits and general disapproval by the public. It is a complex law and, by most measures, the Administration has done a poor job of explaining it. Yet, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t substance there. In fact, a number of changes have already helped millions of average Americans and has the potential to transform how
I have been rather vocal in my opposition to the Affordable Care Act (or ObamaCare). There have been too many problems, too many issues and too many unintended consequences.
According to a report released this week by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), ObamaCare will “reduce the supply of labor by the equivalent of roughly 2.3 million full-time workers through 2021.”
Just as the economy is attempting to recover, we are moving forward with the implementation of a federal healthcare disaster that will kill even more jobs.
There is some good news. There is a new, legitimate “repeal and replace” movement led by US Senators Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Richard Burr (R-NC) and Dr. Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma). This “repeal and replace” effort has substance and includes many thoughtful, private sector based reforms and includes some of the provisions of ObamaCare that address access to health coverage.
The new Patient CARE (Choice, Affordability, Responsibility, and
Being immersed in – and passionate about – the world of healthcare IT has led me to the realization that education is fundamental to its implementation, utilization and realization of clinical success stories. By education, I mean introducing to students at an early age the concept of healthcare IT and its role in improving access to quality care. I have been involved in several organizations that recognize this need and are working to bring healthcare IT-related curricula into classroom and after-school activities.
For example, the Institute for Health Information Technology recently issued a workforce readiness survey that highlighted the need for greater collaboration between Georgia’s educational institutions, and healthcare vendors and providers. By working together, these stakeholders can ensure workforce needs will be met with properly educated and trained students.
In addition, the Georgia Department of Education, and the Technology Association of Georgia’s Health and
Providers beware! HIPAA is not the only law that requires adequate security safeguards for patient information. In today’s mobile environment, companies obtain and exchange patient identifiable information, including health related information constantly. Historically, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”) required healthcare providers to implement administrative, physical and technical safeguards to protect the security of patients’ identifiable information related to their healthcare needs. HIPAA has been the floor of the safeguards that must be implemented to protect patient information. When a healthcare provider fails to comply with HIPAA, the Office of Civil Rights may impose fines and penalties which recently increased to $1.5Million.
Now in 2014, the government enforcement authority for security protections expanded. On January 16, 2014, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) found that it had the authority to penalize a company
An organization pursuing an Accountable Care model requires a different mindset of data analytics versus a healthcare delivery system. The challenge is to integrate a broad range of information across the ambulatory, acute, and post-acute healthcare settings. This integration is not at the same level as what healthcare delivery systems have been working towards for years. Healthcare delivery systems have been working towards the implementation of the longitudinal record. The goal of a longitudinal record is to measure the care path of a patient across the continuum and associated outcomes to ascertain the best practices. It also provides an extensive patient history enabling healthcare providers to assess a patient’s care, identify potential issues such as allergies or pharmaceutical contraindications, prevent unnecessary tests, and support deductive analysis to diagnose a patient’s condition. This is a critical dimension of data supporting accountable care analytics but it is
The Health Insurance Marketplace monthly enrollment report issued this week contained some interesting information. It is too early, and the information is too limited, to really make definitive pronouncements about the Affordable Care Act, but there some results that may be indicative of the health insurance markets of 2015 and beyond.
The big news was the rapid increase in enrollments in the health exchanges over the last month. Enrollment in the health care in Georgia grew from about 6,000 to 58,611 in the month of December. This increase reflects both the desire of consumers to have coverage by January 1, 2014 and the improved functioning of Healthcare.gov website.
Much of the coverage of the enrollment numbers centered on the age distribution trying to discern if Marketplaces were going to attract a sufficient number of younger healthier enrollees to balance out the older sicker enrollees who now have access to affordable coverage. In Georgia about 26 percent of the
We have all heard the phrase “customer experience” and the importance many organizations are placing on it. But what does that exactly mean? It’s more than just “customer service.” You might be thinking, “We don’t have a ‘customer experience’ strategy at our company.” Rest assured every organization has a customer experience … it just might be that yours currently stinks.
Forrester defines customer experience as “how customers perceive their interactions with your company.” Wikipedia defines it as, “the sum of all experiences a customer has with a supplier of goods and/or services, over the duration of their relationship with that supplier. This can include awareness, discovery, attraction, interaction, purchase, use, cultivation and advocacy.”
Of course both are correct. At its core, customer experience is how your customers feel about your brand or organization throughout every single interaction. And in today’s digital, social and mobile world, those interactions are