Healthcare IT Makes Change for the Better a Reality

Healthcare IT Makes Change for the Better a RealityJuly 17, 2015 by Vickie Anenberg

Hospitals continue to face challenges as they attempt to effectively cut costs under value-based payment for services, while also meeting mandates to improve quality care. Executive Insight has posted an article that takes an interesting overview of how IT is working to improve healthcare. A number of the points made in it directly pertain to reducing hospital administrative costs, which can amount, as stated in the article, to as much as 30 percent of healthcare costs.

Cross Country Staffing notes that hospitals are implementing a number of diverse, relatively low-cost electronic systems. For example, automated scheduling of patients and nurses has significantly reduced the need for administrative coordination. Automated kiosks enable patients to enter personal information just once, without depending on a traditional registration desk. Enterprise master patient index (EMPI) systems can almost eliminate the possibility of creating duplicate patient medical records, and patient acuity systems can accurately determine the degree of nursing skills each patient needs for their care.

A high percentage of such systems have been designed to be fully integrated with the EHRs or revenue cycle management systems that use the information they collect. However, EHRs have yet to attain interoperability between like systems provided by disparate vendors. From a clinical standpoint, EHRs are the single most important systems. The software has evolved in recent years, but the goal of interoperability remains elusive.

As Congress prepares to consider legislation that would mandate healthcare interoperability, the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association has posted a new report on the “status and future direction of EHRs.” This 11-page report acknowledges the benefits of EHRs, and addresses what changes are necessary to achieve their full potential. You can download a PDF for your files at no charge.

Cross Country Staffing is ready to help your facility meet the challenges presented by installing a new, or modifying an existing medical records system, and meeting the mandates of such initiatives as Meaningful Use and value-based care. For more than 35 years, we have been providing our clients with cost-effective workforce solutions that exceed their unique staffing expectations. Talk with a Cross Country Staffing representative today.