The Buzz Word
Many of you that have been in the Skilled Nursing segment of the American healthcare delivery system have probably been noticing or hearing a new buzz word lately: interoperability”. If you stutter while pronouncing the mystical word don’t feel bad, even those of us that have been working with healthcare interoperability for decades find it a tongue twister at times; especially after having pronounced it 30 times in a day.
But please let me clarify something: interoperability is not a tongue twisting buzz word; it’s the only means by which you can set up your organization to be successful in the new rising Phoenix of the American healthcare system.
During the last few years I’ve had some key conversations with many hospital executives and healthcare IT professionals, among them: CEOs, CIOs, CMIOs, COOs, architects, strategists, etc. Most of the conversations have been around the topic of how to get the data required for being or becoming an effective ACO, or simply a provider highly conscientious of the well-being of their cared ones even beyond the walls of their facilities. Some of these providers weren’t aware of the ACO conversations since they didn’t participate in the CMS roundtables but they understood that the healthcare model had to drastically change.
The Journey of a thousand miles towards an ACO begins with one step.
Healthcare organizations are coming to realize that the programs stimulated by the ARRA – HITECH Act, Meaningful Use (MU) and Accountable Care Organizations (ACO), require something that they don’t have in sufficient quantities, the desired type or in the right format: “Data”.
In this post we’re going to focus primarily on the ACO analytics side of things although some of the same principles are applicable to Meaningful Use at its various stages.
Chad Johnson from the HL7 Standards blog reached out to interview me for his “5 Hot Topics in Healthcare Interoperability” post. It resulted in an outstanding article.
In the first post of this 2 part blog we explored the big challenges with the demands that the ARRA HITECH and other compliance and regulatory impositions have impacted Healthcare IT: HIPAA’s Version 5010 conversion, ICD-10 migrations, Meaningful Use of EHRs and their Attestation and Accountable Care Organizations. We also briefly touched the popular topic of the imminent end of the world in 2012 according to the Mayan calendar prediction.
If you read carefully you would have noticed that my predictions, well, they have some small glitches now and then, or you may call them “bugs” due to my software developer background. So at the end of this blog we’ll have to revisit the end of the world prediction. Sorry folks.
Healthcare providers and eligible primary physician practices are undergoing analysis paralysis because of all the government impositions on improving healthcare with the following list of complex problems to solve: HIPAA’s Version 5010 conversion, ICD-10 migrations, Meaningful Use (MU) of EHRs and Attestation , Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) , Data Aggregation and mining for successful Quality Measurement Reporting and Performance Improvement Requirements, CPOE implementations, CDA and the CCD template based document generation for sharing patient information between health providers, Natural Language Processing (NLP), Private Health Information (PHI) in the Cloud, internal demand for emerging technologies, the Mayan prediction of the end of the world, Et cetera, Et cetera, Et cetera.