May 31, 2017
Care coordination and HIT interoperability are touted throughout the healthcare world as “must haves” for any provider, practice or health system. The reason is simple: information from multiple sources helps providers and patients to make informed clinical decisions and provide better care. A key pillar in any program that quantifies whether providers are “meaningfully using” their EHRs is the ability to send and receive information on a specific patient. If that’s true at the point of care, doesn’t it make sense that performance measurement and improvement would benefit from the same treatment? Qualified Clinical Data Registries (QCDRs) were created specifically…Read More
May 24, 2017
Can Consumers Help Reduce Rising Costs of Medical Technology?
In years to come, the current health care financial scene may seem like the “good old days” of health care for middle class Americans. Despite escalating consumer costs, proposed cuts in coverage, and an ever-rising cost of care, most Americans can still access health care services. They believe health care will be there for them, even if not everyone can get it. But the affordability of health care, regardless of coverage source, will soon be everyone’s problem. Medicare is projected to run out of money in only 10 years (some say less), and each year the cost of health care…Read More
May 17, 2017
Increase MIPS Versatility and Results with an ONC-Health IT Certified QCDR
Providers focusing on MACRA in 2017 have a menu of choices for implementation—perhaps even too many. But don’t overlook this option for meeting requirements for MIPS (or preparing for an Alternative Payment Model or APM): a Qualified Clinical Data Registry (QCDR). And make sure that your review of the QCDR option focuses on the top tier. That means your QCDR should be both ONC-Health IT Certified and have capabilities that go beyond quality reporting. There is a growing recognition of the unique role that clinical registries may play in improving outcomes over time, and related benefits. CMS has reinforced that…Read More
May 10, 2017
Can Consumers Get Essential Information to Make Good Health Care Decisions?
In the rancorous public debate about how to provide health care to Americans—and especially to vulnerable people with higher risks, lower income, or both—there is a common explanation for rising costs: it’s the patients’ fault. According to this argument, we need to stop the “overuse” of health care services by consumers that are causing our costs to skyrocket. But what if consumers really wanted to be excellent, cost-effective purchasers of health care. Could they actually do it? Could they legitimately question their physicians about recommended treatments? There is little argument that the system of financing health care has immunized both…Read More
May 3, 2017
Health Care Providers Need Performance Data Audits to Market Trust
Health care systems once thought it was crude and undignified to use marketing to attract patients. No more. Now they use qualitative anecdotes to promote status at a time when data is king and consumers view comparative quality data on the Internet. Why not use quantitative evidence? Because their data doesn’t promote their cause—and even they don’t believe it. That avoidance behavior is a huge mistake. Health care organizations need to take steps now to turn performance data into valid indicators of both quality and cost. Otherwise they will risk losing control over their stories as providers of excellence. Consumers…Read More