Uncompensated Care Growing

The American Hospital Association (AHA) annual hospital statics guide indicates that uncompensated care at hospitals continues to grow, representing 6.1% of their expenses in 2012.  Uncompensated care includes  bad debt and charity care.  Beth Kutscher with Modern Healthcare reports on these and more statistics from the AHA guide in her January 3, 2014 article “Hospitals on the rebound, show stronger operating margins“.

Opportunities for Healthcare Cost Savings

HealthLeaders magazine (December 2013) reports that 56% of Healthcare Executives anticipate their organizations achieving total cost reductions of 6% or more over the next three years.  The HealthLeaders magazine survey also pointed to improved labor and supply-chain efficiencies as significant opportunities for cost savings.

Learn more at:  Intelligence Report: Cost-Containment Expertise

Evidence that Healthcare IT Can Generate Financial Benefits

A recent University of Michigan study, as reported by Nicole Casal Moore, found that:

“Use of electronic health records can reduce the costs of outpatient care by roughly 3 percent, compared to relying on traditional paper records”

The study is based on 179,000 patients, comparing the healthcare costs across three Massachusetts communities that widely adopted electronic health records against six communities that did not.

Read more at:  Electronic Records slow the rise of healthcare costs

Fascinating That Many EHR Users Are Already Looking To Switch

Is it too soon to expect Physician Practices to switch EHR Vendors?  Apparently not as Erin McCann, Associate Editor at Healthcare IT News, reports in her February 19, 2013 article EHR users unhappy, many switching.

“With more electronic health record systems continuing to fall short of providers’ expectations, a new report by Black Book Rankings suggests that 2013 may indeed be the year of the great EHR vendor switch.”

McCann further reports, in citing the Black Book Rankings

“Out of those EHR users considering a system switch, 80 percent said the solution does not meet the practices’ individual needs; 79 percent indicated that the medical practice had not adequately assessed the group’s needs before choosing the EHR; 77 percent of respondents cited solution design as ill-fitted for their medical practice or specialty; and 44 percent said vendors have been unresponsive to requests. “

This certainly opens the door for the more than 600 Physician Practice EHR vendors to increase their market share at the expense of under-performing EHR vendors.

Read more at:  EHR users unhappy, many switching

Health Information Exchanges Can Generate a Favorable ROI

In her January 30, 2013 article “What will drive HIE growth? Business value for provider” in Government Health IT (www.govhealthit.com),  Mary Mosquera discusses how HIEs can generate financial benefits for participating organizations.

“Farzad Mostashari, MD, the national health IT coordinator, noted that Camden Coalition’s director, Sandy Selzer, described how the Camden, N.J., health information exchange (HIE) has managed a sustainable return on investment because their costs are low, and they have found a way to add value, through simple ADT (admissions/discharge/transfer) transactions messages, with their existing business relationships within that community.”

Read the entire article:  What will drive HIE growth? Business value for providers