KLAS and the NHS: How will the UK Measure Interoperability?

I am really delighted to see that KLAS has begun their journey in helping the UK healthcare system measure interoperability. Having met with a cross section of CIOs and CCIOs in all care settings the KLAS team are getting this model together to reflect the UK health care system.

Cube Brilliance - Why Context Matters in Healthcare Innovation

Early last month, I took the chance to get out of the office and spend the day among the blooming gardens of Thanksgiving Point in Lehi UT for the Utah HIMSS Innovations and Awards conference. Among the many impressive speakers, one that stood out to me was Todd Dunn, the Director of Innovation for Intermountain Healthcare Transformation Lab.

Sepsis: Demonstrating CDS Progress in Healthcare

KLAS recently published our first report on Sepsis. A first of it's kind, Kody Hansen takes to the blog to discuss which vendors are impacting the fight against sepsis, and how they're doing it.

Why We Do What We Do at KLAS

There are rare people in your life who are so important, so influential, and so close and personal that it is impossible to adequately express what they mean to you. For me, one of these people was Halvor Bailey. He was my best friend. He was closer than a brother. You can imagine my shock when I was informed of his sudden, unexpected, and untimely death at only 45 years old. He was the father of five children, the beloved son of his parents, and a friend to countless others. It was an inconceivable loss to all of us.

The Digital Hospital in a Box

Imagine if the hospital EHR came in a box ready to deploy, would we be ‘playing’ with the box within the first week I wonder? Once upon a time we used to talk about a hospital without boundaries, in some areas that evolved to a liquid hospital, as we move to the next decade a new idea is starting to emerge, a new parallel, the digital hospital in a box.

The Start of the Best in KLAS Awards

The dark age of vendor partner selection was at its peak just prior to the turn of the century, the year 2000. The most successful vendors worked from the top down building strong relationships with provider executives to win big contracts. Marketing materials and PowerPoint presentations capped off with strong social relationships won big deals.

The Red Herrings of EMR Satisfaction

When we first began digging into the data we’ve gathered during our EMR Improvement Collaborative, we were armed with a lot of assumptions and “common knowledge” about the industry. Luckily, at KLAS one of our favorite things to do is watch solid research bust the myths we thought were true.

Consumerism and Healthcare Price Transparency: How Can Patients Compare Costs?

The age of consumerism has arrived, and already we can see it creeping into the healthcare industry. With shifting government regulations and rises in both premiums and deductibles, many consumers of healthcare have begun to take their well-honed savvy-shopping skills and apply them to the care they receive. Many of these smart shoppers have run into something of a brick wall. While consumer products and services in other markets are rife with insight into cost and quality, healthcare—as it is in a lot of areas—is late to the game.

A Deep Dive on the EMR Improvement Collaborative

In healthcare IT, the story is no different. We hear unending tales of the latest and greatest healthcare IT solutions, and yet often providers feel underwhelmed and oversold. Perhaps because it’s the cornerstone of an organization’s technology, the EMR often seems to carry more than its fair share of the productivity paradox.

Why We Do What We Do: A Ninja Perspective

“Ugh, fine.” That’s not what I dream of a physician saying when I ask if they could spare a few minutes to talk with me about the healthcare IT products they use. But it’s what one provider said to me during one of my first calls at KLAS.

The HIT Productivity Paradox

"You see the computer age everywhere but in the productivity statistics." Starting as far back as the 1970s industries began to see that as investment into IT increased, productivity decreased in response. As Meaningful Use and other government initiatives worldwide have pushed EMRs and other HIT solutions into the forefront of buying decisions, healthcare now faces its own version of this same paradox.

The Little Engine That Could – My Journey to KLAS

Many are familiar with the story The Little Engine That Could. For those unfamiliar, the story tells of a stranded train attempting to get toys to the children on the other side of the mountain. Several train engines passing by refuse to help, with various excuses for their lack of sympathy. Finally, a little blue engine offers humble assistance, exclaiming “I think I can!” again and again until the obstacle (the mountain) is overcome and the toys are delivered to the mountain village children.

Maintaining the Quality of KLAS Data

Almost 11 years ago, through a great stroke of luck, I found myself working at a company in Utah called KLAS, whose mission is to improve the world’s healthcare. I came from a market research background, where one of the last projects I worked on was for a company that wanted to know whether families would buy more ketchup if it came in colors like purple and green. On many occasions during this project, I seriously questioned how my life’s choices had led me to work on something so trivial and that I cared so little about.

KLAS and the NHS: How will the UK Measure Interoperability?

I am really delighted to see that KLAS has begun their journey in helping the UK healthcare system measure interoperability. Having met with a cross section of CIOs and CCIOs in all care settings the KLAS team are getting this model together to reflect the UK health care system.

How Does KLAS Conduct Research?

I can still remember when, as a kid, I discovered the fine print at the bottom of my cereal box announcing, “You must be 18 years of age to enter” as a caveat to their “win your own spy-gear tool kit” contest. I learned two things that day: first, becoming James Bond isn’t a solid career path, and second, always check for fine print.

The EHR Implementation as a Relationship

Are you married to your EMR? Richard Corbridge dives in to the parallels between relationships and the implementation of digital health IT solutions.

Happy Little Charts: An Artist’s Love for Healthcare IT

“We live in a data-driven world,” said Dona M. Wong in her book The Wall Street Journal Guide to Information Graphics. Data had been a foreign concept to me prior to joining KLAS—an element that belonged in the world of mathematicians and scientists, not artists. Now as a graphic designer at KLAS, I have the opportunity to make a direct impact on healthcare...

Are We Making Intelligent Health IT Decisions?

I am part of a US based, 24 hospital IDN based in the Midwest. We make many imaging purchases every year. Information on which vendor and model are selected and which are not is recorded and trended. Most decisions are made at the local entity with input from the system.

Interoperability and The UK: At the Center of History

Have you ever been at the center of history? I ask that question because for my whole life, I have been chasing history: driven by the desire to be a part of something bigger than myself, to be a part of a moonshot. To be able to look back and say, “Yep, I was there when that happened, and I was part of it.”

KLAS in the Garage

It seems as though every company has a garage origin story. KLAS has more of a kitchen-table story, but I’m still grateful to have been a part of it.

The Liquid Hospital

Richard Corbridge, CIO of the Health Service Executive and CEO of eHealth Ireland - "The Irish healthcare system has been on an exciting journey putting building blocks in place to create a digital fabric..."

#IUseKLASBecause - Spencer Erman

I have been involved with clinical informatics for around 10 years. Prior to this, I was an EHR end-user, then super-user, then physician champion. As I have come to learn, there are a myriad of things out there that may be used...

HIMSS 17: Solving the World's HIT Issues?

If you’re coming to the US to find answers to solve your country’s HIT problems, don’t. We haven’t solved very many yet ourselves. However, in my opinion, that can be a good thing.

#IUseKLASBecause - Ferdinand Feola

PMC first embarked on its electronic medical record (EMR) journey with the McKesson clinical inpatient system in 1998. They chose a best-of-breed path with their other IT needs, choosing to use Siemens MedSeries4 solution for: revenue cycle, scheduling, general ledger, accounts payable and materials management.

#IUseKLASBecause - Marty Paslick

Care begins when a patient enters the doors of an HCA (Hospital Corporation of America) facility, and often the first interaction in a patient’s journey happens during registration

#IUseKLASBecause - Corey Zeigler

FDRHPO (Fort Drum Regional Health Planning Organization) works with the North County Healthcare System in New York to evaluate, plan and strengthen the connection between the Fort Drum military community and healthcare in northern New York. One of our main goals is to identify the healthcare needs of Fort Drum, as well as the surrounding community.

#IUseKLASBecause - Brian Wetzel

As the director of diagnostic imaging and cardiology at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, I often find myself the position of decision-maker. In order to get solid data, I use KLAS.

#IUseKLASBecause - Miguel A. Vigo IV

Recently, Edward-Elmhurst Health rolled out our new price estimation tool. This change is providing extremely accurate and timely price estimations and price transparency to our patients for all payers and for all hospital services.

#IUseKLASBecause - Mary Alice Annecharico

It is important for me to know what my industry peers are saying about their experiences. Henry Ford Health System (HFHS) needs to know what the values and critiques are of vendor products, professional resources, and services—especially as we plan for capital and operating investments that will support our organization’s strategic needs.

#IUseKLASBecause - Rachel Dunscombe

Being the Intelligent CIO Customer Here in the UK, we used to have a magazine called Which? It was a consumer guide that came out monthly with features on everything from washing machines to cars. I secretly loved Which? and as a kid used to read it, looking at the scores and narratives around products.

Quigley Down Under

KLAS’ culture, as those who’ve interacted with us can tell you, is full of quirks. For example, the IT dept. named the printers around the office things like “chainsaw” and “deforester” as a reminder to keep our paper-waste to a minimum...

Hiring Character First

“How do we get our employees more engaged?” Many answers exist, and it all begins with great hiring. There are hundreds of different ways to attract candidates and fill positions, but at KLAS we look to hire character first.

Why the Arch? Explaining the Symbol of KLAS

For many, starting a new year involves looking back at the past with nostalgia. We’ve enjoyed walking memory lane to see how far we’ve come and, in many ways, what has stayed the same.

Population Health and Patient Engagement: Measuring Success

Participants at the Keystone Summit diligently vetted every detail of the proposed population health framework. One visiting provider executive, who was a bit uncertain of the gatherings benefit at the start, approached me mid-day and enthusiastically told me, “This is really great dialogue; I think the output of this conference will be very beneficial.” I have to agree with him!

Keystone Summit Providers: How Can Pop Health Vendors Improve?

It was fascinating to see the vendors working alongside the providers in trying to solve the population health puzzle. During the recent KLAS Keystone Summit, we had an opportunity to listen to/discuss ideas with a panel of thought leaders within the provider community.

Population Health: Casting a Broad Net

When I reflect on my experience at the Keystone Summit this year, I’m awestruck. I’m in awe that we got such a great group of HIT influencers together. I’m in awe that we put together a framework for a complex topic like population health. And I’m in awe that we did it all in such a short time.

How Close is Population Health to Being Full-Grown?

“How close are we?” A simple question of possible significant consequence. For a football team, “How close are we to the end-zone?” changes the plays you make. For a marathon runner, “How close am I to the finish line?” changes how hard you push.

What is the Definition of Population Health?

Back in October of 2015, we approached our advisory board and asked if there was a topic worth convening a group of leading vendor CEOs and provider executives to discuss.

How do Enterprise Decisions Affect Cardiology?

Healthcare IT is integrating. As providers look to consolidate their IT landscapes, many cardiology departments still have to use multiple solutions patchworked together in order to meet all of their needs.

What are the Emerging Needs of Healthcare Consulting?

In this final blog of my consulting trilogy, I would like to share some insights on our research into where healthcare organizations anticipate needing consulting help in the future.

The Explosive Growth of Secure Communication

Out on the hospital floor, things can get chaotic. The logistical demands of tracking patients, nurses, doctors, administrative staff, and materials can get exhausting. Amidst the coordinated chaos, frustrations over outdated communication methods and worries about HIPAA compliance shouldn’t slow providers down. Yet when given the choice...

Consulting Potholes: Watch Out For These 5 Things

In my last post, I shared the top 5 critical attributes of a consulting firm that help drive successful engagements for clients. Naturally, we also must discuss the 5 most common struggles experienced when working with external advisory consultants...

Will Blockchain Really Solve the Interoperability Problem?

Security concerns continue as one of the biggest roadblocks between healthcare vendor solutions and true interoperability. If achieving interoperability meant nothing more than making patient data accessible everywhere without regard to privacy or security, the industry would have already achieved success...

Top 5 Attributes of Effective Advisory Firms

I’ve spoken with many healthcare organizations as of late. As healthcare becomes increasingly complex, many organizations feel the need to look for advisory expertise to help them navigate new issues. Some even express a desire to enlist outside support that can help speed up their own initiatives.

When Will Value Based Care Actually Happen?

Value-based care (VBC) may seem to be the logical goal of healthcare providers; why wouldn’t you focus your attention on the quality of provider performance?

Community Hospitals: KLAS Is Excited to Look Forward

KLAS defines the community hospital market segment as hospitals with 200 beds or less. As detailed in our most recent community HIS report, providers in the community hospital space prefer ...

Which Imaging Solution is Best for Breast Cancer?

Breast cancer is arguably the best-branded medical condition in the United States. One in eight women receive a breast cancer diagnosis during their lifetime, making it the most common cancer worldwide. It stands to reason that patients have become particularly educated regarding this disease.

Care Management, Your Credit Score, and the Future

Your health status may be assumed or predicted, at least in part, based on your credit score. So believe researchers at Duke University based on a study published in 2014. The idea might seem a little far out there, sure. But this new kind of thinking mirrors how healthcare organizations, particularly payers, now think about care management—they are embracing new and different paradigms.

Healthcare IT Security Solutions: Are You Prepared?

As healthcare solutions become ever more IT focused and the IoT (internet of things) grows ever larger, cyber attacks on care facilities become increasingly prevalent. Many even feel that healthcare lags behind other industries in their ability to secure confidential data.

Why Vendors Must Build a Winning Population Health Team

In order to excel at population health, you have to put all the important pieces together, just as a great coach knows that to win, you have to have a stellar team that plays well together.

Ambulatory Surgical Centers: Insights Coming Soon

As the demand for healthcare providers to improve patient outcomes, increase efficiency in physician practices, and achieve higher levels of quality grows, so too does the demand for ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs).

Deconstructing PACS: Is it the best solution?

In my recent conversations with healthcare providers, the terms “deconstructed PACS” and “reconstructed PACS” have come up—sometimes even both terms in the same conversation...

What’s the Best Portable X-Ray for Your Needs?

Like the computer of yesteryear, x-ray technology has traditionally needed a room of its own to function properly. This can pose a significant problem to many patients, particularly those in critical situations, where walking into a room and laying on the x-ray bed is difficult, if not impossible.

Population Health: Back to the Fundamentals

In our population health journey as an industry, we need to follow the example of all great sports movies. The team that is challenged consistently has a coach that points the team one way—back to the fundamentals, back to basics.

Modern-Day Warrior—Pink Sword, Please!

One of the perks of working with healthcare’s superstars is working with individuals who make a difference. I was fortunate enough to cross paths with such a superstar, JoAnn Pushkin.

Hospital EMR Buying Decisions—Heating Up or Cooling Down?

In June of this year, KLAS released our annual Hospital EMR Market Share Report—and every piece of research points to “heating up.” Meaningful use has largely died down in energy, and buzzwords like population health, interoperability, and a slew of others are now dominating the healthcare IT world. What impact do these new market trends and dynamics have on the replacements and purchasing of core hospital EMRs?

The Skills Needed to Win the Population Health Game

The world of population health management (PHM) is ever changing and evolving. It makes me think of the game of basketball. As every child learns to play the game of basketball, shooting stands out as a very important part of the game. Shooting leads to scoring, and scoring is what is displayed on the scoreboard.

Interoperability: Will the Taste of the Steak Match the Excitement of the Sizzle?

Several years ago, I was in a meeting to discuss the promotion of a new medical service offered by the organization I was working for. One of our public relations leaders wondered if we might be offering “more sizzle than steak.” It wasn’t that we didn’t have a service worth promoting, but he suggested that it might not be fully developed to the point that its quality and benefit matched the level of promotion we were suggesting.

Measuring the Success of Value-Based Care Services

As value-based care (VBC) and different variations and combinations of payment models continue to evolve, providers are confronted with the need for new expertise and capabilities. Not only do organizations need to measure and affect clinical care, they also...

Healthcare Price Transparency and the "Mystery" Bill

It's usually the patient waiting for the doctor, but this time it was the other way around. When I arrived at the doctor’s office 20 minutes late for my scheduled appointment and they still accepted me in, I was quite pleased. The fact that my doctor’s visit for a skin condition only took 15 minutes made me even more excited.

Interoperability - Applying Pressure

More than forty years ago as I completed my Scouting First Aid merit badge, I learned that one of the keys in responding to bleeding is to apply pressure. Of course, applying pressure is not a one-size-fits-all approach.

How Well are Vendors Positioning Providers for the Future?

New care-delivery networks and value-based arrangements are emerging in communities nationwide. While the pace of change varies in different communities, healthcare organizations must be proactive or risk being left behind. The transformation in how providers deliver and are paid for services is, and will continue to be, challenging.

Health Insurer of the Future? Health "Ensurer"

Yes, we need coverage. I have five kids, so I can’t get by without it and wouldn’t even dare to try. But you have to admit, don’t we all find ourselves thinking, when (if ever) does the real value of health insurance kick in?

Healthcare Security Maturity?

It is common to hear that healthcare is lagging behind financial services and other industries when it comes to information security. Unfortunately, it is also common to hear of patient health information breaches, phishing attacks on hospitals, and compromised personal health information.

Interoperability: Getting the Water to the End of the Row

Our current situation with interoperability is one where the water rests, figuratively, at the head of the row with tremendous potential to water a fertile field. But, in a few instances, we have not really opened the irrigation gate at all; and more often, we have started the flow but have not

Value-Based Care Transformation: How some providers are measuring success

It has been nearly nine years since the Institute for Healthcare Improvement launched initiatives designed to simultaneously improve the patient experience, improve the health of populations, and reduce the per-capita cost of healthcare. Now, unaligned incentives along with fragmentation and lack of coordinated care continue to be major issues within the U.S. healthcare system.

Accountable Care Is Now Accountable Scare

Once considered unique and applicable to just a limited number of healthcare organizations, accountable care models and programs now dot the map and dominate local and national healthcare conversations.

Healthcare Cybersecurity: an Everyday Headline

Phishing, data breaches, ransomware, bitcoins—buzzwords that are becoming all too familiar in the headlines and are certainly included in the boardroom discussions of healthcare facilities around the globe.

Interoperability: Was It a Fair and Accurate Measurement?

The 2015 interoperability study is my all-time favorite KLAS study in my 19 years of doing studies. The interoperability research has done the most of any study I have done to dispel misperceptions and rumors and transparently report on how individual vendors are delivering. To get things right, we had to face the fact that gathering research without having it tagged as biased or flawed was a difficult challenge.

A Reality Check

It is abundantly clear to me that the public perception of what is happening with interoperability is not in line with reality. I have seen many EMR vendors up close and personal, and there is a dramatic variance between vendors. I have had the privilege of debating, discussing, and sharing insights and thoughts with most of these industry senior executives...

Data blocking: pernicious evil or random personal preference?

Sending our two young sons to bed without dinner because they were fighting, even after a serious warning—is that appropriate discipline that engenders accountability and creates responsible, kind adults? Or is it a ploy to save money, guarantee a quiet adult evening, enjoy all the food for ourselves, and/or abuse our children? It may be a stretch, but...

Interoperability: How Perception Maps to Reality

Our CHIME panel of CIOs included a great question in the October 2015 Interoperability study that provided valuable findings worth reviewing today to eliminate misinformation and help you understand where perception matches reality.

Peer Pressure and Interoperability; Does Anonymity Help?

The peer pressure around public statements and public actions can do much good or much harm. This second blog in a series of three explores what happens when passionate industry participants can express themselves free from public scrutiny.

Interoperability and Your Travel Agent: Is There a Connection?

Our October 2015 interoperability findings confirmed that 91% of providers participating in information exchange were exchanging patient records with outside organizations. About three-quarters of those were pushing records (TOC documents) to others, typically in the form of CCDs. One third reported they were actually requesting and pulling records that were potentially consumed by their resident EMR. Now, what does “consumed” really mean?

Why are so few sharing inside the family? Same-vendor connections should be easier!

Transparency around vendor performance is the passion at KLAS. It all started in 1996 when Scott Holbrook, Leonard Black, and I debated how best to measure vendor performance and transparently report it to the provider community. Had I known how difficult starting KLAS would be, I likely would have opted out. But considering the opportunities we have had to help providers and the wonderful relationships we have established, I am so glad I opted in!

Connectivity: Where does the rubber meet the road? A closer look at eHealth Exchange (The Sequoia Project)

Real measurement of patient record sharing brings clarity to what is actually happening. Public statements by collaboration leaders and vendor sponsors, however well intended, can create distrust if shown to be inaccurate. Excited announcements referring to hundreds of customers leaves a sense of great success when those customers have yet to go live with the solution and enjoy the benefit.

Interoperability—It starts with the EMR vendors . . . Who’s in the game?

Hundreds of EMR/EHR vendors are government certified, and as the origin of the patient record, they are expected to be interoperable. KLAS invited 12 prolific EMR/EHR vendors to attend the Keystone Summit to test, evaluate, and modify an interoperability questionnaire originally built by a group of provider experts KLAS called the fantastic four.

What It Means to Be a Successful Population Health Management Vendor in 2016

In an emerging market, being a good vendor doesn’t mean being perfect right out of the gate or right out of the box. In many ways, that’s impossible now; not only are solutions in the process of maturing, but providers themselves are still figuring out what PHM means for them—and discovering that it’s a moving target.

Interoperability: Counting Transactions is Not the Answer

When vendor CEOs challenged KLAS to find a way to deeply measure interoperability, it seemed an impossible task. Even though KLAS has bright people, a deeper industry measurement needed serious expert guidance and oversight.

10 Trends of 2015

Today we watch over 800 products across the continuum of care, publishing over 60 in-depth reports each year. We can barely keep up with everything—it is no wonder that we struggle to keep you up to date. So for all the healthcare leaders I work with (and the ones I don’t), here are a few findings you might have missed this year.

Keystone Summit: Uniting Health IT Vendors

Today’s blog explores the courage, integrity, and tenacity displayed by vendor CEOs at the KLAS Keystone Summit. I get goosebumps when I get to work with vendor executives who exhibit the courage and integrity I would want in my vendor if I were responsible for a healthcare organization and the patient care we delivered was impacted by them. A similarly thrilling opportunity to...

Will You Survive the Journey to Value-Based Care?

As a result of this massive market shift, many consulting firms and purpose-built value-based care managed services firms are trying desperately to position themselves as the best resource to help providers successfully prepare for and operate in this new and exciting world of value-based care.

KLAS Keystone Summit—United Nations or Continental Congress?

Getting 12 competitive EMR vendor executives in the same room at the same time was, in and of itself, a miracle. Having them agree on an interoperability measurement tool was a second miracle. And having them embrace an actual, transparent measurement of the current state and trajectory of interoperability in order to stave off unneeded and ill-advised government intervention, thereby allowing the private sector to self-manage, would be a third miracle.

“I meant close the fridge, not the bridge,” a prominent comedian said.

Recently, 240 participants in a KLAS interoperability study overwhelmingly picked standards as key to the advancement of interoperability. Could that be interpreted as a need to develop more standards before real progress will be made? Thankfully participants’ voices fine-tuned the clamor around standards, noting that unclear standards are the greatest hurdle to sharing.

Population Health: An RFA Market

Over the last few years, RFAs—or requests for anything—have become a reasonably common occurrence when healthcare organizations are looking for a healthcare IT vendor solution in the complex areas of population health and value-based care.

Middle East Successes, Challenges and Trends

Several months ago, KLAS visited the Middle East region. Over the course of five days, we were fortunate enough to have site visits with nine healthcare provider organizations. Here are a few highlights from some of the conversations we had.

Health Data Security

The security of private health information is a mounting concern for everyone. Reports of various breaches that leave customers vulnerable often make headlines; even inadvertent breaches can cost a company significantly.

Women's Imaging

About one in eight women in the United States will develop invasive breast cancer during the course of a lifetime. Due to this daunting statistic, women are becoming more informed about various imaging options and available procedures in order to mitigate late diagnosis.

athenahealth or eClinicalWorks: Which One Is Right For You?

A little over two months ago, provider energy and market momentum pushed KLAS to conduct an in-depth analysis around two powerhouse ambulatory vendors that dominate mindshare among ambulatory EMR decisions for independent physician practices. These vendors are athenahealth and eClinicalWorks.

Combating Interoperability Failure, No More Patients Killed by Friendly Fire?

Are organizations hoarding? Unwilling to share? Uncooperative? Heartless? When referring to the sharing of patient clinical records, are we talking about EHR vendors, acute care provider organizations, family practice doctors, or HIEs? It doesn’t matter much if the patient dies as a result of not sharing records. It doesn’t much matter if that lack of sharing records kills the patient. In September of 2014, many of the largest EMR vendors challenged KLAS to step up and be the Switzerland of interoperability to help speed up plug-and-play clinical exchange that effortlessly slides into the clinician workflow. Accepting the assignment with trepidation, KLAS will use key findings from over 240 recent healthcare provider interviews as a catalyst for actionable solutions at the KLAS Keystone Summit, Oct. 1–2.

Top Ten Ways to Avoid EMR Implementation Potholes

For KLAS’ recent report, Implementation Potholes 2015: How to Smooth Out the Ride , we interviewed healthcare providers, vendors, and consultants to determine which EMR vendors provide the smoothest implementations and which potholes each of the vendors’ clients can expect. As part of the report, we asked what best practices providers should employ to make the transition as smooth as possible. Our top ten findings are below.

What Will the Coding Environment Look Like a Year from Today?

As the United States prepares for ICD-10’s deadline, healthcare providers across the nation look inward to evaluate their organizations’ ability to cope with efficiency loss. Many have purchased computer-assisted coding solutions, but, many of these providers still have unmet expectations. In order to hedge their bets, many organizations have contracted coders from multiple outsourced coding firms to supplement their in-house coders. The hope is that when they need even more coders, they will be able to leverage their existing vendor relationships to fill the gaps.

1,217 PHI Breaches and Counting

Since October 2009, 1,217 breaches of unsecured protected health information (PHI), each affecting more than 500 individuals, have been reported to the Office for Civil Rights. These breaches have affected a total of 133,253,121 people. As smaller breaches do not need to be reported to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the real number of PHI breaches is certainly much higher. For instance, the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) has found that since 2005, breaches in the medical/healthcare industry have affected more than 156 million people.