A recent Fast Company article, Why We Need Health-Care Business Innovation More Than Ever, lambasted the current flow of information in the current healthcare system paradigm and expressed a call to action for “transparent business models and processes need to be established to enable collaboration.”
Some disturbing facts from this article:
Three out of every 10 tests are reordered because results cannot be found.
Patient charts cannot be found on 30% of visits.
One-fifth of medical errors are due to the lack of immediate access to patient information.
Thirty to forty percent of the money we spend on health care–more than half a trillion dollars a year–is spent on costs associated with “overuse, underuse, misuse, duplication, system failures, unnecessary repetition, poor communication and inefficiency.”
MedVoy was designed to address precisely these issues with transparency and collaboration. By improving the referral workflow, doctors have immediate access to patient records – eliminating the duplication of procedures, improving efficiency and improving the continuum of care.
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The rate at which physicians refer patients to another physician has doubled over a period of 1999 to 2009. This increasing rate is steady across all groups and is growing even when majority of the physicians who had ownership stakes are moving more into an employee role with hospital systems. However still the referral process has been stuck with age old processes such as paper, fax without the ability to gain or track any intelligence out of it. Even today, many companies are focused on sending referrals over an glorified fax over email mechanism versus taking a harder closer look at the process. Some technology organizations tend to do the back end analysis however that doesn’t work especially majority of the physicians refer outside the system as the referral processes are complex and cumbersome to operate within an EMR or practice management system. Without simplifying the referral process with clinical integrations, no data that you mine will be of good. You will never know which one of these contributing factors are increasing your referrals outside the system and lead to referral leakages. Also in order to have a satisfied patient, all physicians who are involved in the referral chain needs to be constantly updated and have access to patient’s clinical data to provide a comprehensive care. If you want to know, how MedVoy is solving the age old referral process challenges, contact us now.
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EMR is designed for point of care delivery and not to track care across providers and for referral management. Today there are many vendors supporting different processes at the facility level with lack of integration between different systems. So the referral process is still very disintegrated even when a referral is made out of an EMR system as the receiving end may not use the same EMR. This poses a big challenge in terms of having one view of the patients across the continuum and assess the financial , clinical and operational outcome of a referral. Also the health care exchanges doesn’t address the process issue and this poses another layer of complexity. Because of this, today we have different versions, softwares and exchanges for post care, ambulatory care, acute care etc and healthcare entities spend a ton of money to add these integrations. This is why MedVoy provides a centralized secure referral management process which not only connects to the back end clinical system but more importantly makes the referral process integrated so as to get a one shot view of the patient across the continuum and assess the outcomes associated with each referrals by the use of sophisticated business intelligence and analytics.
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As hospitals and providers have been rushing to meet deadlines, meaningful use stipulations have been fraught with controversy and the recent deadlines extensions are no different – stating issues with aggressive policy, immature technology, and tight deadlines. This summer, the AMA sent a letter to Kathleen Sebelius citing concerns that the timelines were too short, expressed concerns that the vendor community was not ready and that rushing to meet these deadlines would compromise patient care. Last Friday, just weeks before the looming 2014 deadlines, the government agencies, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), delayed Stage 2 timelines to allow time to implement the additional features for Phase 2, such as enhanced patient engagement, interoperability and health information exchange requirements, and to use the data from Stage 2 to make policy decisions.
One of the biggest concerns for meaningful use is interoperability, simply stated that different EHRs cannot talk to each other. In an interview about the deadlines, Dan Haley, VP of government relations at athenahealth, posed the question “Why is it that in 2013 different EHR vendors can’t talk to one another?” The lack of interoperability across EHRs is a major hindrance for the current referral paradigm. When a doctor using one EHR refers a patient to a specialist at another hospital using a different EHR, there is no way to integrate the two patient records. As mentioned in a previous post, 60 percent of ambulatory providers state that the move to EHR is increasing their workload just for document alone. However, rather than waiting for the interoperability to be addresses by the juggernauts, there are solutions that can help integrate data and manage patient records. MedVoy uses push/pulls to other EHRs and build connectors to allow access to all documentation in one place and to help avoid the duplication in procedures. MedVoy helps to bridge the gap between different EHR and put all the documentation into one place so it is simple, easy to use – helping to save time and money.
Arriving at the pristine airport and being efficiently whisked through customs gives visitors the first inkling why medical tourism in South Korea has achieved so much in such a short period of time – receiving over 60,000 patients in 2009, 40 percent of which are from the US. Global healthcare being a key economic driver led to the establishment of The Korean Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI) to oversee this sector and to support international patients. KHIDI ensures that participating hospitals are registered, medical outcomes are reported and there is even a multilingual medical call center specifically to help foreign patients, if needed.
South Korea does not stray from its reputation as a technological leader with “slip-less hospitals” that are paperless, chartless and filmless, using rather, RFID chips, completely electronic medical records (EMR) and telemedicine. When hospitals commonly utilize the third generation of da Vinci Surgical System, fourth generation of CyberKnife and where 64 slice CT scans are de rigueur, surgeons pride themselves on using a laparoscopic solution first. Even Dr. Kim of St. Mary’s Hospital was a pioneer in this arena and published his initial findings about minimally invasive options for colorectal cancer seven years before this method received the nod from The New England Journal of Medicine.
Significant inroads have been made in living donor organ transplantations for not only the liver, but also kidney, pancreas and bone marrow transplants since it is important in Confucian culture to preserve the body whole. Highly specialized developments have also been made for cancer treatments and outcomes for stomach, liver and cervical cancers are higher than those in the US. Other areas of specialization include spinal treatment, joint/rheumatism treatment, health screenings, dental care, infertility treatments and integrated traditional Korean medicine.