Archive for May, 2014

5 Themes for Healthcare’s Future

As we wind up the HealthFlock Blog, I think it is important to leave healthcare providers and consumers with a listing of the top 5 things they should look for as healthcare reform initiatives are implemented.

1. Increase in Patient Accountability

Healthcare reimbursement is changing to remit payment based upon the patients’ outcomes instead of the number of patient visits. Specifically, state and federal healthcare programs will pay providers based upon whether or not the patient had a quality outcome and avoided unnecessary admissions, tests or visits. In order to achieve quality outcomes, providers are focused upon engaging patients to be more accountable for their health. Likewise, healthcare payors are modifying payor programs to make patients more responsible financially for out-of-pocket expenses. Many self-insured employer plans are already modifying premiums and benefits for employees who engage in a wellness program, have good nutrition practices or …

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Thank You for Three Great Years

We learned this past week that the decision has been by the AJC’s editorial staff that HealthFlock will discontinue as a blog as of Saturday, May 31.  We the bloggers are very sad to learn of the news but thankful for the opportunity to connect with you, the readers, every week over the past 3 years.

Since we launched, our blog has had 300 posts and over 3,000 comments from readers of all types, from healthcare professionals to major medical associations to large corporations to readers who simply cared about healthcare.  Our content, written by some of the top healthcare leaders in Georgia, has been reproduced in a number of prestigious outlets and news sources and saw significant page hits every month.

Thank you for being such an important part of our blog.  We greatly enjoyed writing about a topic we love and plan to continue our involvement in the field, both as professionals and thought leaders.  On behalf of the bloggers, we thank you again for your viewership and look …

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Steps In The Evolution of The Health Care System

Healthcare in the 21st century is evolving on three paths: providing consumers with the incentives and tools to stay healthy, giving providers the incentives and tools to keep patients healthy, and creating and sustaining integrated health care institutions who maintain the health of the whole person. Often all three elements are necessary before there are measurable improvements in health and efficiency.

The health care delivery system is moving several fronts toward more intergraded systems of care driven in large part by changes in the way consumers and insurers choose sites of care and pay for that care. While most agree on the needed direction of change the evolution of the health care system is currently faced with a number of “chicken and egg” dilemmas: what has to happen first?

A representative example is the integration of primary care and behavioral health, specifically depression. A little under 10 percent of adults in the United States have symptoms of …

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Springtime: Hope Springs Eternal in the Policy World Too

augustaI love this time of year. In the Springtime, hope springs eternal. Azaleas, dogwoods and rhododendrons take center stage.

The Major League Baseball season is just getting started and everyone still hopes for another world series championship for the Braves. We are all optimistic in the Spring.

In the Springtime, everything is fresh and green and blooming … but there is this feeling of renewal … of hope … of promise.

And, we’re the in the middle of fresh, new election cycle. The Supreme Court added elections as a new Springtime tradition, joining the Opening Day for the Braves, the Masters at Augusta National, and Mother’s Day.

In the policy world, Spring is also a time for renewal. The Springtime is critical for building momentum for a movement … for planting the seeds for significant change. It is in the Springtime that you nurture ideas, gain insight and perspective, understand all you can about an issue.

Creating innovative policy which saves lives and save money but which …

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