Over the past several years I have witnessed an interesting phenomenon. CEO’s who manage Long Term Post-Acute Care (LTPAC) facilities of every size have expressed their concern that data, which they place into licensed versions of various EMR / EHR systems is in-fact held hostage by the vendors themselves. On the other side of this Healthcare Phenomena, CEO’s and other senior officials at the EHR/ EMR vendor organizations denied that data is being held hostage, and represent that they are more than willing to work with their clients in an open data driven environment.
The vendors have found a way to stretch the truth to their advantage and provide the minimum required by federal mandates such as Impact 2017! Should Vendors have the right to capture and hold your data hostage to support their own agenda that has nothing to do with your patients, reducing cost or delivering an increased quality of healthcare?
LTPAC executives need to wake up and see exactly what the vendors are doing. Giving unfettered access to data that belongs first and foremost to the patient, created by the LTPAC clinical, operational and / or financial divisions of the healthcare facility is simply not good for the vendor’s business.
Today the focus of the vendors has changed from acquiring customers to retaining customers. Vendors must think that healthcare executives, clinicians and support staff just don’t see their agenda that prohibits unfettered access to data each organization or facility is placing into licensed versions of EMR / EHR systems. By keeping your data hostage, it becomes almost impossible to move to another system if the LTPAC organization becomes dissatisfied with their current EMR / EHR vendor. Denying access to your own data, in the format you need and require, further hampers the organization to meet reporting requirements for bundled payments and value based reimbursements. Both of which require accurate, complete and verifiable analytics. How do you get there when vendors will not allow, or at best, throw up road blocks to deter your ability to access your own data?
Imagine if every time you created a pro-forma budget using Excel you had to ask permission of Microsoft to access the finished spreadsheet. And, when they gave you permission to use your own data they restricted how you could use it, share it, access it and in what format. Oh, Yea, did I mention there would be an additional charge? Would you stand for that scenario? Well that’s exactly what’s happening throughout our healthcare system. Who loses? Simple - patients, clinicians, healthcare providers, facility executives and ultimately Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance companies all of which related back to higher cost with little focus on the improvement in the quality of care for patients.
I ask anyone involved in healthcare data workflows, how is your vendor living up to their promise? Can you access all data you insert into their system in any format you require? Can you pull electronic reports and process the data through analytic service providers? Can you tie your data into CMS Quality Measures? Can you create true and accurate reports to submit for faster claims processing, bundled payment qualifications and tracking, and thereby support the transition to value based healthcare from fee-for-service?
If the answer is “Yes” you can do that, then I apologize for wasting your time with this article. If the answer is “No, I can’t access my own data which is being held hostage”, then read on!
What if you could access all your data without any restrictions. This includes, but not limited to clinical, operational and financial. What if the data base does not mash data together but simply reorganizes it to be presented in an extensive, well-structured longitudinal patient record that is organized by Vendor then by patient? What if you could verify and normalize the data and create a single source of truth within a patient’s golden record? What if you could use a Master Patient Indexer to tag the correct data, by patient, by vendor so that the analytic engine knows where the data resides within the longitudinal record by individual patient across all data sources. Then, finally you apply advance analytics in the form of pre-determined Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) tied directly to CMS Quality measures and address the reporting mandates coming out of the state and / or federal government. You can then take that data and related reports and distribute them to any device as required by the authorized end users.
What if you could use simple English to ask a Google like question to the analytics engine and in micro seconds get the answered rendered into a text report, pie chart, graph or one of several hundred of display options? Would that interest you?
Want to see this in action? It will cost you and your staff 30 minutes, on-line with me. I’ll show you what’s possible right now, regardless of roadblocks set up by vendors. Better yet, our system does not violate any Intellectual Property nor does it compromise any contractual obligation or your relationship with your vendor. Call me direct to arrange a time for an on-line demonstration, see for yourself.
Fred Zolla, CEO
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