Posts in Category: performance

Data accessibility viewed as key to closing the gap between value-based care and health IT 

​Although much progress has been achieved in digitizing the healthcare system, today's health IT infrastructure still struggles to support a transition to "value-based care," according to a new report from the American Medical Informatics Association.

"Provider organizations pursuing new models of health care delivery and payment are finding that their electronic systems lack the capabilities needed to succeed," the study asserted. "The result is a chasm between the current health IT ecosystem and the health IT ecosystem that is desperately needed."

The report, titled, "Crossing the health IT chasm: considerations and policy recommendations to overcome current challenges and enable value-based care," outlines policy recommendations for patients, providers and researchers to improve access to healthcare data for all the groups and proposes new standards for IT systems and applications.

LUMEDX, the leader in cardiovascular data intelligence and a pioneer in cloud-powered healthcare solutions, offers a comprehensive suite of software and services enables meaningful analytics, high-performance workflows, optimal integration of clinical and HIS data, and improved continuity of care.

For more information on LUMEDX HealthView solutions, please visit www.lumedx.com or email info@lumedx.com.​

Radial Access, Same-Day Release after PCIs Could Save $300 Million a Year 

New research shows that U.S. hospitals could save $300 million annually--and see fewer complications--if they use transradial access for percutaneous coronary interventions, and release patients on the same day.

Analysis shows that same-day, transradial PCIs cost $3,500 less than discharges that did not occur on the day of the procedure. Compared to transfemoral interventions, transradial PCIs also reduce:

  • Bleeding
  • Vascular complications
  • Transfusions

"We now have identified a mechanism for hospitals to improve their efficiency and lower costs that is associated with improved PCI outcomes simultaneously," says the study's lead author, Amit P. Amin, MD, of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, in a news release.

"Our data show there is a tremendous potential to reduce costs of PCI, reduce complications and achieve a 'win-win' for both patients and hospitals," Amin adds. "Hospitals that redesign their care pathways to perform more same-day, transradial PCIs can potentially save hundreds of thousands of dollars each year."

As this research indicates, a major part of achieving cost savings is reducing avoidable complications. But reducing PCI complications is just one part of the puzzle; CV service lines can reduce adverse events for a myriad of other procedures.

There are also opportunities to achieve cost savings in other ways, such as by improving throughput and making billing easier and more accurate. Identifying these opportunities is crucial for physicians and cardiovascular leadership.

That's where LUMEDX's Cardiovascular Performance Program comes in. This new program offers a no-charge analysis of your facility's performance on complication rates and other issues that reduce revenues. It then generates a detailed plan for improvement.

The opportunities for better clinical and financial performance are dramatic. Learn more by contacting the Cardiovascular Performance Program team at info@lumedx.com or 800-966-0699.

See you at ACC: If you'll be at ACC.17 this month, stop by and say hi at LUMEDX Booth 2411. Or schedule a meeting to find out about the latest innovative software and services that can help you improve care and dramatically reduce costs across your CV service line. 

 

Cardiac Bundled-Payment Program to Go Forward Despite Change in Administration 

The bundled-payment program for cardiac care will go forward despite the Trump administration and the confirmation of new Health & Human Services Secretary Tom  Price, a critic of the program. July 1 remains the start date for the initiative, according to an HHS official who spoke to Modern Healthcare.

Under the bundled-payment model, hospitals in 98 designated markets can keep the savings they achieve if they spend less than the target price for a 90-day episode of care for bypass and heart attack patients. However, hospitals that exceed the target price must repay Medicare -- and Target prices will be determined retrospectively.

The HHS spokesman confirmed that the start of the initiative will not be slowed by the Trump administration, which previously had moved to delay the effective date for a rule that launched it. Nor does it appear that Price will stand in the way of its implementation.

Last fall, Price criticized bundled payments in a letter to then-President Obama. Price objected to the mandatory nature of the initiative, arguing that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid had exceeded its authority and upset the balance of power between Congress and the president.

CMS predicts that the program--which also covers knee and hip replacement--will save the federal government as much as $159 million between now and 2021. In 2014, the CMS said, heart attack treatment for 200,000 patients cost Medicare more than $6 billion. 

From one hospital to another, the cost of treating heart attack patients varies by as much as 50 percent. Does your hospital have a plan to meet the target prices for bypass and heart attack patients? LUMEDX's Cardiovascular Performance Program can help. Click here to find out how. 

The Promise of Predictive Analysis 

If hospitals could accurately predict which patients were going to experience complications down the road, they could intervene early with those patients, and perhaps prevent them from having to be rehospitalized. Reducing readmissions is one of the potential benefits of predictive analysis, and it’s a big one.

“We have 750 patients every day. Instead of looking at everybody, if we can look at 20 patients, that would be a great advantage,” said Jose Azar, M.D., of Indiana University Health, in an H&HN article.

Also highlighted in the Hospitals & Health Networks article is Christiana Care Health System, which has been using predictive analytics for about five years. The Wilmington, Delaware, nonprofit health system set up its homegrown analytics system in 2012 with $10 million in grant funding from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation Center.

Predictive analytics has helped Christiana Care improve on financial and utilization metrics, but administrators cautioned that predictions are no help if an organization doesn’t have the resources to respond to them. That means everyone – from doctors and care managers to nurses and social workers, and even clerical staff – needs to be ready to intervene based on predictions about patients.

“You need to be able to respond to and receive information in real time,” said Terri Steinberg, M.D., chief health information officer at Christiana Care. “That’s the cost of entry,” Steinberg told H&HN. “Without a robust care-management program, there’s no point” in making predictions.

Complimentary webinar recording available

A recent LUMEDX/Christiana Care webinar is now available as an online download or on CD. "Delivering Clinical and Business Excellence — The Power of Data Transparency: How Christiana Care Leverages Cardiology Data to Improve Care Quality and Contain Costs" can be downloaded by clicking hereIf you prefer to have a CD mailed to you, please click here.

 

Webinar to Highlight a Winning Data Analysis Strategy 

Christiana Care Health System, one of the largest healthcare providers in the mid-Atlantic, has achieved wide-ranging improvements in both clinical performance and business outcomes after implementing strategies designed to ensure top-quality care delivery while at the same time containing costs.

Christiana's success began with a data strategy that will be laid out in a complimentary webinar called Delivering Clinical and Business Excellence: The Power Of Data Transparency. Subtitled How Christiana Care Leverages Cardiology Data to Improve Care Quality and Contain Costs, the webinar will take place on Thursday, Feb. 2.

It will include discussions on: 

  • How data transparency drives cost and outcome awareness and impacts the CV service line
  • Christiana Care's experience comparing the costs and benefits of undertaking a costing model
  • The value of case attributes

Presented by Leslie Mulshenock, Director of Heart & Vascular Services, and Matthew Esham, Heart & Vascular Service Line Manager, the webinar will also include a summary of the costs and benefit of Christiana's strategic improvement plan, which has resulted in optimal reimbursement, lower costs-per-case and higher patient satisfaction. 

A live Q & A will conclude the Feb. 2 event, which will take place at 1 p.m. Eastern time, 12 p.m. Central and 10 a.m. Pacific.

Click here to register for this complimentary event.

3 New Clients Join LUMEDX Family 

Hospitals in Alabama, Massachusetts and Texas begin CVIS implementation

LUMEDX is happy to welcome to our family three new clients: Marshall Medical Centers; Holyoke Medical Center; and Baylor Scott & White Health, the largest not-for-profit healthcare organization in Texas.

The first Baylor Scott & White location to implement the LUMEDX solution is Baylor Jack and Jane Hamilton Heart and Vascular Hospital in Dallas. LUMEDX is providing the hospital with comprehensive cardiovascular data management that:

  • Connects isolated data sources,
  • Integrates with the enterprise electronic health record (EHR), and
  • Eliminates redundant data collection.

Holyoke Medical Center has gone live with our PACS with Echo Workflow software. After all phases of the CVIS deployment are completed, the secure, cloud-delivered software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution will provide the medical center-located in Holyoke, Massachusetts-with comprehensive management of its Echo, Nuclear, ECG, Holter and Stress workflows, and will offer remote access for physicians, allowing them to access data and complete reports from any location.

The deployment for Marshall Medical Centers is taking place at two hospitals: Marshall Medical North in Guntersville, Alabama; and Marshall Medical South in Boaz, Alabama. Both hospitals have implemented Echo Workflow and ECG-Holter software, which will help them improve performance and quality of care while containing costs and minimizing inefficiency.

We look forward to long and productive relationships with our new partners!

 

Early Reaction to MACRA Rule Mostly Positive 

Last weekend was a busy one for those trying to parse the new MACRA rule released on Friday. At 2,202 pages, the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act rule wasn't exactly beach reading, and it gave the health IT community plenty to talk about on social media and in policy statements.

The dust is still settling, but it appears that early reaction to the rule was mostly positive. Healthcare organizations praised the CMS for being responsive to concerns they had raised during the comment period leading up to the rule's finalization. In fact, about 80 percent of the 2,000+ pages are comments CMS received and its responses.
The American Medical Association was pleased with the permanent elimination of the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula. "The new law," according to the AMA's press release, "gives many physicians the opportunity to be rewarded for the improvements they make to their practices and for delivering high-quality, high-value care to Medicare patients."
Other features that drew favorable reactions included:

  • The rule's overarching theme that improving the organization and payment models for medical care must stress quality over quantity.
  • Greater reporting flexibility for clinicians, as well as support for innovation in the delivery of care.
  • The formal adoption of a transition year during 2017, which makes major changes to the Quality Payment Program (QPP) reporting requirements, and provides a longer time frame for those transitioning to the QPP.
  • Emphasis on helping clinicians educate themselves about the rule.
  • Easing of the policy defining the Advanced Alternative Payment Model (APM), which will allow additional programs to quality.

But the rule is not without its detractors. "It's disappointing that the flexibility provided for quality reporting in 2017 largely disappears in 2018 and beyond," the Medical Group Management Association said in a policy statement.
Other organizations complained that the nominal risk standard defining the Advanced APM remains too high.

Want to know more? Healthcare Dive has a great breakdown of the rule changes you need to know. And for even more information on the new rule, click here. 
What's your take on the final MACRA rule? Share your thoughts in our comment section below.

Spotlight on Analytics, Part 4 

Q & A with Gus Gilbertson, Product Manager for LUMEDX

Exploring CV Service Line Analytics

Q: Where should heart hospitals begin if they want to start using data analytics?

A: Digitization is the key. Start by identifying areas where paper continues to hide data rather than illuminate care process dynamics. For all digital information, build standards for producing and consuming data so that the data collected has meaning, and those who need the information have access and know what to do with the information available.

Q: What unique challenges do heart hospitals face that can be addressed by healthcare analytics?

A: Understanding biometrics, imaging data, labs, medications, process, and outcomes measures make for a richly complex set of data to leverage to drive value in cardiovascular care.

Q: How can data analytics improve clinical care in a cardiology department?

A: With good data governance, a cardiology department can efficiently care for a variety of patients. With well-controlled processes to ensure proper procedures and medication therapies applied, patient health risks and quality of life are managed effectively.

Q: Who are the end users of an analytics product at a heart hospital? Who else should see that data and analysis?

A: The care teams are the key consumers of analytics products at a heart hospital. Clinical and administrative leaders need to know:

  • Whether health care processes are working
  • How well they are doing at achieving positive health outcomes for patients
  • What the risk profiles of their patient profiles look like compared to those of competitors and across payers

Quality, regulatory, operations, and financial stakeholders also need to understand the dynamics of the clinical, operational, and financial performance of the heart program –and where there are opportunities for improvement or celebration of achievement.

Stay tuned for Part 5 of Spotlight on Analytics, where we'll discuss Predictive Analytics. Parts 3, 2, and 1 are below.

 

Posted by Tuesday, July 12, 2016 11:08:00 AM Categories: analytics healthcare analytics healthcare reform healthcare today industry news Lumedx performance

The Best of Cardio and Health IT News: 4/14/16 

News stories you won't want to miss!

Higher patient ratings equal fewer readmissions, lower mortality

The scores patients assign their hospitals appear to correspond with the quality of the hospitals' patient outcomes, according to a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Researchers analyzed the scores patients assigned to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' star-rating system for more than 3,000 hospitals. Hospitals' star ratings were inversely proportional to their rates of death within a month of discharge. 

Hospitals reap $1.6M from specialists, including cardiologists

While the average primary care physician is generating less income for hospitals ($1.4 million in 2016 versus $1.56 million in 2013), that’s offset by specialist doctors, whose contribution to hospital revenues jumped 14% to $1.6 million, compared with $1.42 million three years ago. Among specialists, orthopedic physicians bring in the most business ($2.75 million each), followed by invasive cardiologists ($2.45 million) and neurosurgeons ($2.44 million.

5 ways make employees happy in a healthcare workplace

Healthcare organizations named to Fortune's 20 Best Workplaces in Health Care share a sense of camaraderie and pride in their work, and offer lessons to other hospitals and systems that strive to create a positive work environment that can attract and retain the best talent. The winning organizations overcame the natural hierarchy of a healthcare organization to create a friendly, emotionally supportive workplace where coworkers feel as though everyone is equal and they can count on coworkers to support them.

Heart, vascular department at Aurora St. Luke’s receives top accreditations

Building on its rich history as the premier heart hospital in Wisconsin and a global destination for heart care, Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center has received two prestigious accolades from the Accreditation for Cardiovascular Excellence (ACE). Both acknowledgments from ACE reinforce Aurora St. Luke’s positioning as a global leader in cardiovascular excellence.

Momentum building for national unique patient IDs

As digitization of the healthcare system increases, issues around data exchange and medical records exchange make patient identification more challenging than ever. In the absence of a unique patient identifier system, doctors use a patient’s name and birth dates to identify them, and there can be hundreds or thousands of identical or similar names and dates in EMR systems. Get it wrong, and a diagnosis or treatment may be missed — sometimes with dire consequences.

The Best of Cardio and Health IT News: Week of 3/28/16 

A sampling of this week's healthcare stories that you won't want to miss.

Female cardiologists remain underrepresented, report more work-life challenges than men

Two decades have brought little change for women in cardiology, according to a new study. Women account for only 20 percent of cardiologists who see adult patients, and are more likely than their male counterparts to face professional discrimination. 

Study eases concerns about antidepressants and cardiovascular risk

Patients who take antidepressants are not increasing their risk of arrhythmia, MI, stroke or transient ischemic attack, according to new study. Prior research had suggested a link between depression and negative cardiovascular outcomes.

ACC honors 18 people for their contributions to cardiology

Eighteen people have been selected for a Distinguished Award from the American College of Cardiology (ACC). The recipients will receive their awards on April 4 during the ACC’s annual scientific session in Chicago. 

Integrated approach slashes ER use for heart failure

One health system is using coordinated teams to cut emergency room visits and improve medication management for heart failure patients. A new blog post details how Geisinger Health System built on its record of care integration and coordination to address emergency and inpatient care for heart failure patients.

Can healthcare learn safety lessons from aviation model?

To reduce medical errors, providers should look to the skies, one physician writes. Following a 1977 airline disaster, the industry developed a "culture of safety" that could be worth emulating, writes David Nash, M.D., founding dean of Jefferson College of Population Health, Thomas Jefferson University.

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