Recent Articles

Webinar: Improve Self-Pay Patients Payments

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Improve Self-Pay Patient Payments

Join us Wednesday, July 16th, 2014 at 12:15pm ET

Patients today are facing higher premiums, larger co-payments and bigger deductibles. And a greater financial burden for your patients means a greater collection burden for your practice.

Your first step towards thriving through the rise of self-pay can begin right now. In this free webinar, you’ll learn strategies for solid practice management, how to develop a specific plan to improve self-pay patient payments and essential staff training tips.

 

Join self-pay expert Emily Putnam as she discusses:

  •      How to create a self-pay policy—and what every strategy should include
  •      The immediate need to implement a self-pay policy and train staff
  •      Tactics, tools and technologies to improve self-pay patient payments and reduce DAR
  •      How a health care IT services partner can help you achieve your self-pay goals

Register Today!

Nothing Assuring about Health Insurers

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by Sally Ginsburg, MD, for athenahealth

I recently read a New York Times article about the salaries of insurance executives that left me gobsmacked. Did you know the average annual base salary of insurance company CEOs in 2013, according to the article, was $544,000? (Wait, that’s just the base pay — annual total compensation is typically between 11 and 18 million dollars.) If the health care reimbursement process was a seamless one, then perhaps these numbers wouldn’t leave such a horrible taste in my mouth. But that’s not the case.

I doubt that I am alone in thinking U.S. health insurers have somehow negotiated themselves the deal of the century. They have managed to create a situation in which they collect huge sums of money in the form of premiums, not having to make payments until all the patient responsibility — co-pays, coinsurance and deductibles — max out. Once that maximum out-of-pocket limit is reached, then the payers are obligated to pony up their reimbursement payments.

The payment paradigm in health care is in the midst of a gradual, yet massive shift, from the classic fee-for-service model to a system that rewards value; at the same time, it has become increasingly difficult for patients or physician offices to contact insurance companies.

Read the full story here.

Webinar: Staying Independent and Profitable as Independent Physicians

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Staying Independent and Profitable as Independent Physicians

Join us Wednesday, June 18th at 12:15 p.m. ET

Faced with mounting costs, declining reimbursement, and increased complexity brought on by the Affordable Care Act, a growing number of independent physicians are feeling pressured to give up on private practice.

But being acquired isn’t the only option for survival. With the right technology partner for electronic medical records, practice management and care coordination, you’re free to remain independent—without having to go it alone.

Dr. Jeff A. Drasnin of ESD Pediatric Group will talk about how his independent practice has remained profitable in the face of these challenges, and what it takes for other independent physicians to do the same.

  • How to choose the right technology for your practice
  • The importance of aligned incentives with your vendor
  • Transparency in claims collection
  • Keeping the focus on patients
  • How his practice increase collections by 60%

We believe that as independent physicians, the only people you should have to be accountable to are your patients. They’re your patients, it’s your practice, and it’s your financial independence. Register now to learn how to keep it that way.

Register Today!

Webinar reminder: Meaningful Use Stage 2 Interoperability

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Just the Facts – Meaningful Use stage 2 & ICD 10

Wednesday, June 4th from 2:00 – 3:00 EST

Attend this hard hitting session where Rebecca Wiedmeyer, President of Vela Consulting Group will share her experiences helping hundreds of covered entities understand and address MU 2. In addition she will provide answers to the complexity of addressing ICD 10.

Presented By: Rebecca Wiedmeyer, President of Vela Consulting Group

Moderator: Marc Haskelson, Compliancy Group

Register Here!

The Critical Role of ‘Delightful’ Design in Mobile Healthcare

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by ABBE DON, VP OF USER EXPERIENCE, EPOCRATES

The Health Leadership Forum sat down with Abbe Don, Vice President of User Experience at Epocrates to discuss trends in mobile healthcare technology and the role that design will play in spreading adoption and use of these technologies. Don leads the team responsible for creating a contemporary and innovative mobile customer experience for caregivers. Prior to joining Epocrates in June 2013, she spent 25 years focused on user experience design for companies such as Apple, The Walt Disney Company, Hewlett Packard, and IDEO.

Read the interview here.

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished in Meaningful Use

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Last week CMS essentially reversed their compliance date stance for the Meaningful Use program in what amounted to  a big smack in the face to any health care provider that has put in the effort and time to knock Stage 2 out of the park. Providers working hard to successfully meet the Stage 2 measures shouldn’t feel that it is all for naught. You are on the cutting edge of using technology to deliver better care, and that makes you some of the best care providers out there.

Read more at: http://athenahealth.com/blogEHRScope

Update on Meaningful Use

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CMS released a new proposed ruling regarding the Meaningful Use timeline.  The new time frame would allow all providers to attest for Meaningful Use this year under the original Stage 1 MU criteria.

This is great news for those clinicians who were waiting to attest. Read more on the proposed ruling:

Continue reading: Update on Meaningful Use

Webinar: Where does it hurt? Common Physician Pain Points

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Where does it hurt

Join athenahealth CEO Jonathan Bush for a special keynote address on common physician pain points, followed by an exclusive Q&A and expert-led sessions.

“Where does it hurt?” is a common question caregivers may ask their patients. But when was the last time that question was posed to the caregivers themselves? That’s exactly what Mr. Bush believes we, as an industry and as a country, need to do more often. At this special event, we’ll discuss these common pain points and industry challenges, with:

Healthcare analytics enters new frontier of value-based care

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KLAS reports on how the healthcare analytics market is changing in the new paradigm of value-based care

Amid the shift toward value-based care, providers’ analytics needs are drastically changing, resulting in vendors rushing to the market with a wave of new products, including more targeted solutions. This according to the most recent KLAS report,Healthcare Analytics Perception 2014: Analytics for Value-Based Care—A New Paradigm.”

The healthcare analytics market is bursting with vendors, giving providers more options than ever before. In fact, in this perception study, providers mentioned a staggering 87 different vendors being considered for BI/analytics in value-based care. To that point, no single vendor was mentioned more than 7% of the time. In this report, KLAS makes sense of the growing vendor crowd and provides insights into the most-considered vendors.

“Business intelligence and analytics have gone from a ‘nice-to-have’ to a ‘must-have’ in today’s challenging healthcare environment,” said Joe Van De Graaff, report author. “To fulfill short-term analytics needs, many providers report shifting more consideration to vendors with healthcare-specific solutions. However, a clear market leader has yet to emerge.”

KLAS spoke to more than 100 healthcare providers to capture which vendors they are considering and in which specific arenas. Visit KLAS online at www.KLASresearch.com/KLASreports.


Do EMR and Practice Management systems really improve efficiency or was it a trick?

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New and seasoned Practice Managers and Physicians know that handling the day to day tasks of running a medical practice can be time consuming. Administrative tasks and responsibilities have increased with ever-changing government regulations, Medicare laws, and legal concerns.  Efficiency appears to be a losing battle, and stressful workflows take a toll on delivering compassionate patient care. A paperless office was presented as a time and cost saving endeavor that would lead to better patient care. Or was it a trick?

Sound familiar?

A polished representative came to the office to demonstrate their EMR, Practice Management, and Medical Billing system. You were convinced, “this is the solution, what a relief, Ah…!” Thousands of dollars and countless hours spent on implementation and training. Finally, the “go live” date arrived. Then, reality hit; the staff forgot how to upload documents, the doctor was in the exam room trying unsuccessfully to view an MRI with the patient, and you frantically tried to fix the issues. The workflow stopped as panic took over. You finally phoned customer support and you were placed on hold. “Ugh,” you began to question…”How much longer will the learning curve actually take?”  “Did I make the right system selection?” “Why did I try to improve efficiency?” “It really wasn’t that bad and where is that polished sales person now?”

Continue reading: Do EMR and Practice Management systems really improve efficiency or was it a trick?