Tag: patient identification

Why Data Interoperability Is Critical In The Fight Against The Pandemic

By Daniel Cidon, CTO, NextGate.

Daniel Cidon

As COVID-19 closes in the on U.S., the need for longitudinal health data and interoperability have never been greater. Providers need access to the full picture of every patient they treat, and epidemiologists need to consolidate data from multiple sources to track the spread of the disease and determine where more aggressive containment strategies need to be employed.

For many organizations already overwhelmed, fragmented systems lead to an infrastructure bottleneck, resulting in degraded data quality, gaps in care coordination, medical errors and burdensome workflows. Lack of comprehensive medical data impairs a provider’s ability to know how many people have the virus, the geographical location of confirmed cases, and the effectiveness of treatment.

Even as capacity restrictions force organizations to work without barriers—via drive-thru screenings, make-shift tents or by way of telehealth—real-time access to data can help streamline care management, whether fast tracking admissions or empowering patients at home through online portals.

Here are just five ways data interoperability plays a pivotal role in addressing the epidemic:

Coordination of Care: COVID-19 provides a sobering reminder of just how dire an integrated, scalable and interoperable healthcare infrastructure is. Coordination among first responders, public health officials, labs, acute and post-acute facilities will be critical to efficiently deal with the explosion of cases. Insurers will also be a key player of the care coordination team as to not slow down or hold up prior authorizations and patient discharges. Access to information about hospitalizations and test results among healthcare participants will be vital for enhanced continuity of care across settings and transitions. Real-time data afforded by interoperability bypasses the need for phone calls and faxes, which create delays and information inaccuracies.

Patient Identification: A complete view of one’s medical history can be a matter of life or death in the face of COVID-19. Bringing disparate medical records together into a cohesive story enables those on the frontlines insight into an individual’s pre-existing medical conditions, medications, allergies, etc. to make the most informed decisions under insurmountable circumstances. Patient demographics and data standardization play a huge role. Accurate patient identification ensures data about an individual is correctly linked, updated and shared, for improved clinical decision-making and enhanced care quality and safety. As health officials look to track and predict the spread of the virus. A complete view of the patient population can only be done with a firm understanding of the patient’s identity, and the key relationships the patient has to their next of kin and to their providers of care.

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Patient Misidentification Is Still Problematic For Hospitals

Health, Care, Medicine, Healthy, Doctor

 

By Salman Rashid, creative marketer, RightPatient.

Budgets and costs regarding IT are expanding more than ever- healthcare providers are increasingly focusing on requirements that demand up to date facilities as well as stability.

This is the conclusion of a survey by the firm Navigant Consulting and also explains a few more insightful details. Health systems are confidently financing in spaces such as improved EHR systems, process automation, better revenue integrity, as well as attaining improvements in revenue cycle via third parties.

This survey was conducted via HFMA (Healthcare Financial Management Association) and its sample included more than 100 CFOs and revenue cycle members from health systems, as well as hospitals. 

One of the main takeaways from the survey is that almost two-thirds of the sample stated that they face problems primarily related to EHR systems- either they underutilize their EHR systems, or else they are facing challenges with EHRs like getting better results or else cannot cope with the continuous upgrades. However, even with all these, patient misidentification persists within the healthcare system of the US and is still a top concern for most providers. 

Payment concerns like out of pocket payments are also another challenge, according to the respondents- 85% of respondents feel that lack of insurance will be detrimental for the healthcare providers since they rely heavily on insurance payments. However, even in these cases, they face denied claims when patients are misidentified. 

To face all these issues altogether, almost 70% of the sample agreed that increasing the budget is necessary to overcome them. However, fifty percent of the respondents stated that they are collaborating with third parties to maintain revenue cycle costs, better patient identification, as well as challenges like denied claims. 

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