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News 9/11/19

September 11, 2019 News No Comments

Top News

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Women’s healthcare company Kindbody opens its fourth – and largest – clinic in Flatiron, NY. The company launched just over a year ago, has raised $22 million, and developed its own EHR. Digital health offerings also include virtual consults and a patient portal. It plans to open three more clinics by the end of 2019.

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Founder and CEO Gina Bartasi’s path to women’s wellness seems to have started at an Atlanta-based publishing company, progressed to the founding of a content-driven fertility-focused website, and then led to her founding fertility benefits company Progyny, which she left in 2017.


HIStalk Practice Musings

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Fans of Margaret Atwood will be happy to know that “The Testaments,” her sequel to “The Handmaid’s Tale,” is now available. I remember liking the first book, but it’s been so long that I’ll need to read it again before attempting the second. I haven’t seen the show on Hulu, which has already acquired the rights to the sequel.

Goodreads has compiled this list of highly anticipated novels set to come out this fall. I’m especially excited about “The Starless Sea” by Erin Morgenstern, who wrote the fantastic “The Night Circus.” (If you read one book this year, make that one it.) I’m also going to check out “The Giver of Stars” by Jojo Moyes, which tells the story of a woman who joins a traveling library started by Eleanor Roosevelt.

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And speaking of libraries, efforts have been underway for some time now to convert Britain’s 10,000 remaining phone boxes for other more relevant uses. Some communities have turned them into micro libraries through sponsorship programs, while others have used them to house defibrillators.


Webinars

September 19 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “ICD-10-CM 2020 Code Updates.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: June Bronnert, MSHI, RHIA, director of terminology mapping, IMO; Theresa Rihanek, MHA, RHIA, classification and intervention mapping lead, IMO; and Julie Glasgow, MD, senior clinical terminologist, IMO. The 2020 regulatory release is right around the corner. Join IMO’s top coding professionals and thought leaders as they discuss new, revised, and deleted codes; highlight revisions to ICD-10-CM index and tabular; discuss changes within Official Coding Guidelines; share potential impacts of the code set update; and review ICD-10-CM modifier changes.

September 26 (Thursday) 2 ET. “Patient Education Data: A Key Ingredient for Improving Quality and Patient Experience.” Sponsor: Healthwise. Presenters: Victoria L. Maisonneuve, MSN, RN, director of the Nursing Center for Excellence and Magnet program, Parkview Health; Marta Sylvia, MPH, senior manager of quality improvement and outcomes research, Healthwise. Healthcare data is everywhere! It’s scattered across various systems and in countless formats, making it difficult to collect and glean actionable information. Knowing where to start depends on what your organization wants to accomplish. Vicki Maisonneuve will share how her team analyzes data around the use of patient education. By combining different data sets, she can easily identify trends, gaps, and opportunities to improve quality and patient experience across Parkview Health.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.


People

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Doctor on Demand names Robin Glass (Evolent Health) president and chief commercial officer, and David Deane (TurningPoint Healthcare Solutions) VP of business development.


Announcements and Implementations

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North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services providers will use Phreesia intake technology to deliver the state’s Standardized Social Determinants of Health Screening Questions to patients and alert providers in real time to available resources. The SDOH screening is part of the state’s Health Opportunities initiative, which will also coordinate care between state-based agencies using the NCCare360 data-sharing network.


Telemedicine

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MTBC makes virtual consult capabilities available to select behavioral health and addiction medicine specialists using its TalkEHR. It plans to make the feature available to all customers by the end of the year.

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Symplast adds telemedicine features to its EHR and practice management software for plastic surgery and medspa providers.

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Aunt Martha’s Health & Wellness, an FQHC with 23 clinics in and around Chicago, will use a $136,000 grant from HHS to offer primary care and diabetes management via telemedicine. It will also offer diabetic patients an app that will allow them to record and share their daily sugar levels with providers.


Other

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This article highlights the vast differences consumers find when they check prescription prices using GoodRx. It’s true that pricing for the same drug can vary in the extreme, making it well worth a consumer’s while to trek a few extra miles to save money. The Byzantine nature of prescription drug pricing was made all too clear to me last week, when I had to fill several prescriptions for myself and a family member. Being a cash-paying customer, I transferred the first prescription from Walgreens, where GoodRx listed it as $25, to Publix, which listed it as $12. The fact that the two establishments were across the street from each other made the decision that much easier. I discovered, much to my chagrin, that Publix doesn’t accept GoodRx coupons, but was happy to apply some sort of magical discount to my total, bringing the prescription’s price down to $5. While I didn’t leverage GoodRx’s coupons for any of the medications, browsing the site certainly made me more aware of the need to shop around and ask my provider and pharmacist questions about pricing. In fact, I did just what GoodRx Director of Research Thomas Goetz predicted I would: “When … transparency is in the hands of consumers, consumers start to change behavior. And that starts to change the economics of the system. It’s very slow-going, but that’s in general what we’re all about.”


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From the Consultant’s Corner 9/11/19

Patient Access: Partnering with Clinicians is Essential for Success
By Nancy Gagliano, MD

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Nancy Gagliano, MD is CMO at Culbert Healthcare Solutions in Woburn, MA.

Providers and clinical practices are being persuaded to transition patient access responsibilities to a central patient access center. This comes with the promise of removing administrative burdens for patient scheduling, registration, and more; thus, the practice can focus solely on delivery of care. Patient access center set-up typically transfers existing patient service representatives to a centralized unit, which is organized around pods of specialty expertise. This strategy provides for knowledge transfer to the central unit and a personal link back to the practice. However, in a blink, providers express frustration with scheduling errors and patient complaints. To compound the problem, central staff turnover of around 30% leads to the loss of personal linkages and knowledge transfer.

There are many factors that contribute to an underperforming central access approach, such as inadequate technology and its set up, insufficient and undertrained staff, as well as ineffective management structure. However, complexity of provider scheduling is often an underlying factor severely limiting the potential for success. Organizations often lack standards for provider schedules, visit time, visit types, and protocols. This article provides guidance for an organizational approach to provider scheduling and a partnership between practices and centralized access centers.

We’ve all heard the reasons for complex schedules:

  • I need seven minutes for a visit.
  • I need 15 minutes for a visit.
  • My patients are sicker.
  • I shouldn’t waste my valuable expertise outside of my sub-specialty.
  • I can only see two – “wellness, consults, annuals, new” in a session.
  • My sessions should be three hours.
  • My session should be five hours with only 1 new patient.

On top of the scheduling complexity is the “provider bump.” Somehow, conferences, vacations, and car registrations happen at the last minute and patients need to be rescheduled. Altogether, these factors result in gaps in schedules, wrong patients in slots, frequent rescheduling, and unhappy patients and providers.

As a physician, I have frequently seen these challenges, and do not blame the providers. They are trying to bring structure to their chaotic lives in a healthcare world that continues to place more and more burden on them. With long and often unpredictable hours, remembering to submit time-off requests for conferences or to tend to an expired car registration falls to the bottom of their priority lists. Therefore, it is the organization’s responsibility to help provide structure and clear expectations to reduce the chaos.

Time slots

While individual providers have a good sense of how long it typically takes them to see each type of patient, it is extremely challenging for a scheduler to know exactly what type of patient or condition they are scheduling, which often results in placing the patient in the wrong time slot. Additionally, complex schedules will often leave gaps unfilled. If a provider’s schedule has an open 15-minute urgent care slot at 9 am and a 15-minute routine at 11 am, how can a scheduler book a patient requiring a half-hour appointment? When located within an office, a quick chat can provide approval to overbook a timeslot or merge two disparate slots, but a patient access rep often doesn’t have easy access to the practice. Instead of contacting the practice to get authority to adjust a visit type, slots go unfilled. Multiply this by hundreds of providers with their unique scheduling requirements, and it is understandable that scheduling errors occur, and that access is not optimized.

One of the most important endeavors taken by an organization to improve this problem is to establish organization-wide visit-time standards – if not at the organizational level, then at least at each practice level. Our favorite is 20, 40, or 60 minutes per appointment. All patient visit types fit into one of these three-time allotments. The chance of making an error is dramatically reduced, as is the potential for unfilled gaps in the schedule. For providers who see patients faster than this, their schedules can have a few double-booked slots built in, and those providers who take longer have a couple of 20-minute blocks dispersed through their day.

Providers often need some convincing to accept this new template. We advise starting with the total number of patients they currently see during their session and creating the template based on the total volume. Highlight that the patient flow will even out over the day, even if a few patients take longer or shorter than the 20 minutes they were booked for. The result will be far fewer patients booked in incorrect slots and an overall smoother patient flow. As the provider adjusts to the new schedule, blocks or double bookings can be added to further accommodate the provider’s style. To gain provider acceptance, it is important not to initially expect increased provider productivity, but rather reduced scheduling errors and smoother patient flow.

Templates

Scheduling templates are helpful to create a balance of appointment types each day, such as new, annual, follow-up, and urgent. We commonly see two challenges with template approaches. The first is that they are set up with numerous types of appointments, creating rigidity and confusion for the schedulers. Once again this leads to errors. The second is that they are often built on provider choice rather than demand. For example, a provider wants to only see two annual exams daily, but has a panel size requiring four annuals. This results in a cascade of patients put in “wrong” visit types; lack of same day/urgent visits; and frustrated schedulers, providers, and patients.

We recommend an analytic approach to building templates — analyze historic volume, current practice challenges, and build as flexible a template as possible. In addition, while holding slots for certain visit types may be important, such as setting aside new consults, make sure you have a process to unfreeze slots in a suitable time frame for them to be used for other patient needs. For example, many sub-specialists are reluctant to see more general specialty patients, while a health system may have unmet general specialty demand. It may be an appropriate compromise to hold new patient slots for specific disease conditions until three to five days before the date and then open to more general new patients after that.

Protocols

Another common challenge is scheduling protocols that are either too vague or too complex. For example, “back pain” could end up with an orthopedic surgeon, rheumatologist, physical therapist, or primary care provider. The process may not easily facilitate the scheduler matching the patient to the right provider. On the other hand, if the criteria for scheduling is so complex that medical education is needed to decipher it, it may not be appropriate for routine centralized patient access center to schedule. Adding additional clinical staff, or enhanced technology, may be needed for sub-specialty activities. With the right resources to liaison between the practices and central scheduling unit, a middle-ground approach can be devised. It is important to review and develop a formal protocol review process and bring significant variations to the governance body.

Provider Time

Another important component of a successful centralized patient access approach is having provider schedules available for a minimum of six months, and preferably one year out. For this to work, however, call schedules, vacations, and conferences need to be planned and set in advance. A common practice requires providers to submit their time off requests every six to 12 months. With advanced planning, almost all requests can be accommodated. Any additional time-off requests should require practice/department leadership approval. Additionally, finding one’s own coverage and making up the time-off quickly for last minute emergencies should be a standard expectation.

Communication

Whether it’s provider schedules, protocols, or complex patients, there are numerous needs for good communication between the call center and the practices. It is important to have a clear process and expectation for communication. This could be anything from a “back line phone” between the practice and the call center, to a formal liaison relationship. Setting the foundation for a partnership approach requires excellent communication and process to solve problems.

Governance

This all leads to the need for organizational governance. This should include providers, practice management, central access leadership, and IT. Too often, patient access oversight is limited to the operations side of the healthcare system. The clinicians voice their concerns to health system leadership while feeling frustrated and powerless. Health system leadership turns to the central access leaders and demands improvement in accuracy and patient service. All the while, the access center leadership is frustrated by their inability to influence the practices to support their needs. A dyad governance approach is essential for a successful centralized patient access. Both operations and clinical practice representation is essential. It is crucial to develop organizational standards for provider scheduling for everything from visit type, visit length, provider bump rules, to scheduling protocols. In return, the access center should be held accountable for Service Level Agreements, such as abandonment rate, speed to answer, handle time, and accuracy.

In summary, it is unlikely for a centralized patient access approach to be successful without a partnership between centralized patient access and clinical practices. While providers often bristle at standardization, once implemented, providers usually see fewer errors and smoother scheduling. Setting performance expectations of the central access center, as well as implementing scheduling standards, is foundational for a high-performing central access approach. Therefore, creating a dyad governance approach can create both the alignment and the accountability for a successful partnership.


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

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News 9/9/19

September 9, 2019 News No Comments

Top News

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Pediatric urgent care clinic Brave Care raises $5 million in a seed funding round led by several investors that include Sesame Street through its partnership with VC Collaborative Fund.

The Portland-based company, which opened in July, plans to use the financing to open more clinics and develop its own EHR and practice management software plus an online triage tool.


HIStalk Practice Musings

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Happy belated National Read a Book Day! I have no idea why it’s celebrated every September 6th, or who is behind its observance, but any excuse to read more books is fine by me. (Today is Teddy Bear Day, according to TimeandDate.com, in case you were wondering.) Inc.com celebrated with this article on business book recommendations.

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Over the weekend, I stumbled across this fantastic Outside.com article on the enigmatic Appalachian Trail hiker Baltimore Jack, which led me down a literary rabbit hole related to AT reads like Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild” and Bill Bryson’s “A Walk in the Woods,” both of which I’ve read and highly recommend. I’ve yet to read anything by Bill Bryson, in fact, that I haven’t liked. “A Short History of Nearly Everything” is especially amusing.

Speaking of woods, the dog days of summer are still enveloping my neck of ‘em, and so I’d love suggestions of books that might help me to mentally prepare for cooler temps and autumnal colors. Please email me with your suggestions. Though pumpkin spice flavors and scents beckon, I can’t bring myself to indulge until daytime temps are at least below 90.


Webinars

September 19 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “ICD-10-CM 2020 Code Updates.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: June Bronnert, MSHI, RHIA, director of terminology mapping, IMO; Theresa Rihanek, MHA, RHIA, classification and intervention mapping lead, IMO; and Julie Glasgow, MD, senior clinical terminologist, IMO. The 2020 regulatory release is right around the corner. Join IMO’s top coding professionals and thought leaders as they discuss new, revised, and deleted codes; highlight revisions to ICD-10-CM index and tabular; discuss changes within Official Coding Guidelines; share potential impacts of the code set update; and review ICD-10-CM modifier changes.

September 26 (Thursday) 2 ET. “Patient Education Data: A Key Ingredient for Improving Quality and Patient Experience.” Sponsor: Healthwise. Presenters: Victoria L. Maisonneuve, MSN, RN, director of the Nursing Center for Excellence and Magnet program, Parkview Health; Marta Sylvia, MPH, senior manager of quality improvement and outcomes research, Healthwise. Healthcare data is everywhere! It’s scattered across various systems and in countless formats, making it difficult to collect and glean actionable information. Knowing where to start depends on what your organization wants to accomplish. Vicki Maisonneuve will share how her team analyzes data around the use of patient education. By combining different data sets, she can easily identify trends, gaps, and opportunities to improve quality and patient experience across Parkview Health.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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MobileHelp rebrands its health division to Clear Arch Health, which will continue to offer remote patient monitoring, telemedicine, and mobile personal emergency response systems.

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Martis Capital closes a minority recapitalization of EHR and practice management vendor Credible Behavioral Health.

Population health management company Apollo Medical Holdings acquires Accountable Health Care IPA in Southern California.


Announcements and Implementations

Valued Medical Care (NM) selects EHR, practice management, and RCM software from CareCloud.


Telemedicine

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Austin, TX-based Medici adds a chat collaboration feature to its telemedicine software, giving physicians the ability to virtually consult with colleagues.


Other

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Kaiser Health News sheds light on why some outpatient providers, particularly imaging centers, offer discounted services on Groupon. Outpatient Imaging (GA) admin Brittany Swanson says the practice went with Groupon because they saw their competitors doing it, and has since seen hundreds of new patients take advantage of their discounted mammograms, body scans, and other screenings. Crown Valley Imaging (CA) President Sami Beydoun insists it’s more about marketing than revenue, considering the cut Groupon takes: “It’s kind of brutal. It’s a tough place to market. But the way I look at it is you’re getting decent marketing.”

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A local news outlet profiles Diamond Physicians CEO James Pinckney, MD who is traveling regularly between his concierge practice in Dallas and the California-based set of live television show Chasing the Cure. Pinckney is one of four doctors on the show who, along with crowdsourced contributions, try to diagnose patients who call in with mysterious ailments. “With the crowdsourcing,” he says, “we’ll have all of this brainpower focused on the patient, plus the four doctors on the show, putting the puzzle together. And you have everybody else who’s watching also helping. It’s amazing, and I think we’re going to see something that’s never happened before, real breakthroughs, real miracles. I mean, we’re chasing the cure.”


Sponsor Updates

  • EClinicalWorks will exhibit at ASCENT 2019 through September 11 in Austin, TX.
  • Healthwise will exhibit at the Medicaid Managed Care Summit September 9-10 in Scottsdale, AZ.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk.

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Contact us online.
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News 9/4/19

September 4, 2019 News No Comments

Top News

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Primary care company VillageMD raises $100 million in a Series B round led by Kinnevik AB. It has raised $216 million since launching in 2013. It will use this latest round of financing to expand into new and existing markets, and enhance its DocsOS technology.


Reader Comments

From Holly: “Re: American Well survey. You know what’s interesting – re: your call for insight on telehealth from a practice perspective. Many health plans are actually starting to think about how they engage practices to offer members telehealth visits with community doctors. It should be interesting to see this as a potential trend to help plans manage members’ health needs, and to help practices embrace virtual care.”


HIStalk Practice Announcements and Requests

Thanks to the following companies that recently supported HIStalk Practice.

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Mr. H mentioned that our Summer Doldrums special has almost come to an end. Contact Lorre if your company is interested in taking advantage of special sponsorship rates. Now is a great time to leverage sponsorship benefits, considering there are 185 days left until HIMSS 2020. That may seem like plenty of time to get your marketing ducks in a row, but industry long-timers know they’ll go by in a flash.


Webinars

September 5 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “Driving 90% Patient Adoption Across Your Network: How US Dermatology Partners is Showing Us The Way.” Sponsor: Relatient. Presenters: Michele Perry, CEO, Relatient; Sara Nguyen, VP of applications and integrations, US Dermatology Partners. US Dermatology Partners is helping its physicians reclaim time they can spend with patients and is turning patient engagement strategies into business results across its 90 locations in eight states. Attendees will learn how US Dermatology Partners defined its patient engagement objectives and physician-optimized strategies. They presenters will provide advice on starting or accelerating  patient engagement goals.

September 19 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “ICD-10-CM 2020 Code Updates.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: June Bronnert, MSHI, RHIA, director of terminology mapping, IMO; Theresa Rihanek, MHA, RHIA, classification and intervention mapping lead, IMO; and Julie Glasgow, MD, senior clinical terminologist, IMO. The 2020 regulatory release is right around the corner. Join IMO’s top coding professionals and thought leaders as they discuss new, revised, and deleted codes; highlight revisions to ICD-10-CM index and tabular; discuss changes within Official Coding Guidelines; share potential impacts of the code set update; and review ICD-10-CM modifier changes.

September 26 (Thursday) 2 ET. “Patient Education Data: A Key Ingredient for Improving Quality and Patient Experience.” Sponsor: Healthwise. Presenters: Victoria L. Maisonneuve, MSN, RN, director of the Nursing Center for Excellence and Magnet program, Parkview Health; Marta Sylvia, MPH, senior manager of quality improvement and outcomes research, Healthwise. Healthcare data is everywhere! It’s scattered across various systems and in countless formats, making it difficult to collect and glean actionable information. Knowing where to start depends on what your organization wants to accomplish. Vicki Maisonneuve will share how her team analyzes data around the use of patient education. By combining different data sets, she can easily identify trends, gaps, and opportunities to improve quality and patient experience across Parkview Health.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Irvine, CA-based NextGen Healthcare will lay off 82 employees when it closes its Canton office in Ohio early next year. The closure was alluded to in the company’s July earnings call as part of an effort to increase offshore work in India and restructure around reduced headcount in the US.


Announcements and Implementations

Clinical services and technology company Altais will team with the California Medical Association and ACO primary care business Aledade to help physicians succeed in value-based contracts with payers using the latest workflow technologies and services.

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Relias announces GA of cloud-based population health software for behavioral healthcare providers, associations, and payers.

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Psychiatric and behavioral healthcare provider Archway Station (MD) implements the Providing You Practice Solutions EHR from Willetts Tech.

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ITether develops care management software to help behavioral health providers remotely monitor their patients in between appointments. The mobile solution includes secure messaging, treatment planning and goal-setting, telemedicine, and social services resources.

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The Valley Springs Health and Wellness Center (CA) will implement Athenahealth when it opens next month.

DrChrono adds Relatient’s patient engagement technology to its tablet-based EHR and practice management software.


People

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In Texas, primary care-focused Catalyst Health Network promotes Jeff Bullard, MD to CMO.


Government and Politics

Montana Governor Steve Bullock will sign an executive order declaring Big Sky Care Connect the state’s official HIE. The exchange was established last year and is managed by the Montana Medical Association. Big Sky is the state’s second attempt at a statewide HIE. HealthShare Montana, which was established with HITECH funding, shut down over governance issues.

The State of Indiana will use a $21 million grant from the CDC to detect and prevent overdoses. A portion of the grant will go towards ensuring that small physician practices have access to the state’s INSPECT PDMP, among other efforts. The funding is part of a $1.8 billion opioid prevention package that HHS is allocating to all 50 states over the next three years.


Other

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Fast Company profiles several mental health startups hoping to attract patients with midcentury modern furniture, soothing spaces, apps, and provider-finding technology, ultimately shining a spotlight on the fact that the key to getting patients the care they need is all in the pricing. As the author so succinctly puts it: “None of these startups begin to address the affordability issue, at least from a place of innovation. Finding a good therapist is an annoying process. But it’s an annoying process for a select group of people who either have the insurance or the cash on hand to cover a $180 per-session fee.”


Sponsor Updates

  • EClinicalWorks will exhibit at CASA 2019 Annual Conference & Exhibits September 4-6 in Monterey, CA.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk.

Get HIStalk Practice updates.
Contact us online.
Become a sponsor.

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News 8/28/19

August 28, 2019 News No Comments

Top News

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San Francisco-based patient engagement startup Luma Health raises $16 million in a Series B round that brings the four year-old company’s total funding to nearly $26 million.


HIStalk Practice Musings

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Kate writes to recommend “Love You Hard: A Memoir of Marriage, Brain Injury, and Reinventing Love” by Abby Maslin. The book was a literary gift to herself; one she’ll make required reading for her three young daughters when they are old enough to handle the realness of life that Abby portrays. (Kate, you may also find “Eight Twenty Eight” by Ian and Larissa Murphy compelling in a similar way.) She made my day by adding, “Thank you for sharing your reading list and the recommendations of others – I come for the health IS and return for the book reviews!”

Let’s not let Kate down. Please email me with your suggestions. What titles will you dig into over the upcoming Labor Day weekend?

Speaking of the long weekend, ambulatory HIT news is a bit hard to come by this week as company PR machines and industry rumor mills creak to a near-halt ahead of Friday’s mid-afternoon mass exodus. (Or, perhaps everyone’s just having too much fun at #EpicUGM.) And so I’ll share a few more literary-related items to hopefully make reading this post worth your time.

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Does the latest and greatest algorithm leave you with little time to spare for paper-based books? Check out “Books that Will Help You Kick Your Tech Dependence” at Outside.com, natch. I’m in full accord with the author, who believes that, sometimes, books show up in our lives at exactly the right time.

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Hyland continues its “What our executives are reading series” with recommendations from Product Management VP Scott Dwyer. I’ll definitely look for “Unbroken” by Lauren Hillenbrand the next time I’m at the library. I read “Seabiscuit” by Hillenbrand years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it (and the movie it spawned).

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Finally, Dan Brown fans may want to check out “The Potter’s Tale,” the debut novel of retired family physician Dave Davis. The book features two reporters (one with a medical degree) as they race to save the world from extinction, all the while dealing with ancient Mayan mysteries, global warming, secret societies, and the Kennedy assassination.


Webinars

September 5 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “Driving 90% Patient Adoption Across Your Network: How US Dermatology Partners is Showing Us The Way.” Sponsor: Relatient. Presenters: Michele Perry, CEO, Relatient; Sara Nguyen, VP of applications and integrations, US Dermatology Partners. US Dermatology Partners is helping its physicians reclaim time they can spend with patients and is turning patient engagement strategies into business results across its 90 locations in eight states. Attendees will learn how US Dermatology Partners defined its patient engagement objectives and physician-optimized strategies. They presenters will provide advice on starting or accelerating  patient engagement goals.

September 19 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “ICD-10-CM 2020 Code Updates.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: June Bronnert, MSHI, RHIA, director of terminology mapping, IMO; Theresa Rihanek, MHA, RHIA, classification and intervention mapping lead, IMO; and Julie Glasgow, MD, senior clinical terminologist, IMO. The 2020 regulatory release is right around the corner. Join IMO’s top coding professionals and thought leaders as they discuss new, revised, and deleted codes; highlight revisions to ICD-10-CM index and tabular; discuss changes within Official Coding Guidelines; share potential impacts of the code set update; and review ICD-10-CM modifier changes.

September 26 (Thursday) 2 ET. “Patient Education Data: A Key Ingredient for Improving Quality and Patient Experience.” Sponsor: Healthwise. Presenters: Victoria L. Maisonneuve, MSN, RN, director of the Nursing Center for Excellence and Magnet program, Parkview Health; Marta Sylvia, MPH, senior manager of quality improvement and outcomes research, Healthwise. Healthcare data is everywhere! It’s scattered across various systems and in countless formats, making it difficult to collect and glean actionable information. Knowing where to start depends on what your organization wants to accomplish. Vicki Maisonneuve will share how her team analyzes data around the use of patient education. By combining different data sets, she can easily identify trends, gaps, and opportunities to improve quality and patient experience across Parkview Health.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Crystal Practice Management will invest $2 million in relocating its headquarters from Austin to Cedar Park, TX. The company specializes in practice management software for optometrists and vision therapists.


Announcements and Implementations

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HSX extends its HIE capabilities beyond the Greater Pittsburgh area to New Jersey through a new connection with the New Jersey Health Information Network.


Research and Innovation

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AMGA’s latest pay and productivity survey of 272 medical groups finds that compensation increased by an average of just under 3% in 2018, an increase of over 2% from the year before. Productivity saw a negligible gain, meaning groups haven’t experienced an increase since 2016.

New research from PatientPoint shows that 21,000 physicians who offered in-office education on opioids each prescribed 142 fewer pills between October 2017 and May 2018.


Telemedicine

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An American Well survey of 2,000 consumers finds that the disconnect between interest in virtual care and actual utilization is still alive and well: 66% of respondents are willing to use telemedicine, while 8% have actually done so. Seventeen percent of those interested in trying it don’t know if their insurance plans cover the service. I wonder how many of those surveyed see physicians who offer telemedicine, whether by video or chat. I typically don’t report on American Well because of its focus on health systems and payers, but I believe these findings are relevant to healthcare organizations of all sizes. There’s obviously interest, which mom-and-pop telemedicine vendors are doing their hardest to try to take advantage of, but there’s also an awareness problem. On the physician practice side, I imagine there’s a resource and/or bandwidth problem. Dr. Jayne has written about it a time or two, mentioning that “Telehealth is definitely at the forefront of many organizations’ strategic plans. Whether you’re a dedicated telehealth vendor or a practice looking at it as a solution to reduce revenue leakage, if it’s not part of your plan, you need to be thinking about it.” I’d love to hear from readers who have considered implementing telemedicine at their practices. Email me with your anecdotes, anonymously or otherwise.


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