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Conversations about Optimizing Hospital Operations

10 Facts for Implementing Real-Time Capacity Management

10 Facts for RTCMHere are 10 facts that the best hospitals in the country – most of which have achieved Magnet Designation – say have justified their implementation of Real-Time Capacity Management:

1. 20% reduction in equipment rentals after implementing TeleTracking’s Real-Time Locating System – WakeMed Health & Hospitals

2. $1,024,320 revenue gained by eliminating blocked beds for patients who tested negative for C Diff using data from TeleTracking’s Custom Reporting Solution – Advocate Good Samaritan

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Categories: Author: Dennis Morabito, Real-Time Capacity Management

Eliminate Waste From Healthcare: TeleTracking Vision for Future

Eliminating healthcare wasteTeleTracking rolled out a vision for the future at its 10th Annual Client Conference. The vision is to “eliminate waste from healthcare.”

Recognizing TeleTracking’s role in impacting some of the major contributors to waste, specifically around the inefficient delivery of care, it was the “How To” that got the clients in attendance excited.

Saying TeleTracking’s role is to “Protect Your Mission by Improving Your Margin” company president Michael Gallup announced in his opening remarks that TeleTracking intends to expand its operational platform to automate every non-clinical activity in hospitals and health systems, including ancillary and outpatient processes. » Continue reading

Categories: Future of Healthcare, Real-Time Capacity Management

Big Data + Healthcare Business Analytics = Big Bucks for Hospitals

Clarian Dashboard“Big Data” sounds like a character in a “Transformer” movie, or a Tennessee Williams play.

Everyone in healthcare IT is talking about “Big Data” these days. From Genome medicine to EMRs, the opportunities are stupendous. But so are the problems.

An IBM survey of healthcare executives says 90 percent expect things to be more complex over the next five years, but 40 percent admit they aren’t prepared for it. IBM makes the point that investing in business analytics will help those 40 percent (and more) through the next big wave of information overload.

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Categories: Author: Dennis Morabito, EMR / Healthcare IT

Why Ignore Hospital Operations?

Why Ignore Hospital Operations?In a September 21 article, New York Times reporters Reed Abelson, Julie Creswell and Griffin J. Palmer say the move to electronic health records may be contributing to billions of dollars in higher costs for Medicare, private insurers and patients.

Critics conclude that EMRs make it easier for hospitals and physicians to bill more for their services whether or not they provide additional care because of the way billing codes have changed and enable fraud through EMR-assisted cloning and upcoding. Hospitals and physicians counter that the increases reflect more accurate charge capture for services and that patients (older and with more co-morbid conditions) require more care than in past years.

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Categories: EMR / Healthcare IT, Operational Efficiency

Eliminate Healthcare Waste, Eliminate Reform?

Managing healthcare wasteCould eliminating waste in healthcare eliminate the need for the Affordable Care Act?

Consider the latest numbers offered by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and The Institute of Medicine (IOM). The CBO now says it will cost $1.1 trillion to expand healthcare coverage to uninsured Americans over the next decade. The recent IOM study, Better Care at Lower Cost, pegs annual waste of all types at $765 billion. So removing two years of waste would more than cover insurance expansion for ten years.

Of course, the reform act calls for much more than expanded insurance coverage and cost reductions, but it’s interesting that the two areas with the biggest financial impact could potentially cancel each other out.

So, where are the biggest areas of waste in healthcare? The IOM had some surprising answers.

Although fraud is huge, it’s not the prime mover. Fraud from all sources accounted for “just” $75 billion, less than 10 percent of the total amount.
Prevention may well be the future of medicine, but missed opportunities for prevention at primary, secondary and tertiary levels of care totaled $55 billion.
The three biggest culprits, by far, were:

The choice by physicians to use more or costlier care than necessary accounts for $210 billion (and we have a financial system that is misaligned with the goal to reduce and eliminate this over treatment)
The paperwork required for care reimbursement costs $190 billion because of all the attendant inefficiencies that go along with the process
Operational inefficiencies and medical errors waste $130 billion each year
Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) are a way to trace and address care selection and overuse. The Affordable Care Act eliminates federal reimbursement for preventable medical errors. And Accountable Care Organizations, which offer financial incentives for physicians, hospitals and other health care providers to team up may fundamentally change our traditional “fee for service” payor system.

While many of these changes required will take years, if not decades, to fully take hold, TeleTracking can tackle operational efficiency challenges today and can point to real-life examples of what’s possible.

Improvements in organizational capabilities can get waste out of healthcare today by optimizing the resources they have at their disposal. Hundreds of leading healthcare systems can attest to millions of dollars of waste reduction by optimizing their operations, actually avoid building new facilities while increasing the amount of patient visits, by simply by making greater use of the facilities and resources that already exist.

Eliminate waste, eliminate reform – maybe not. But there is vast waste in the delivery of healthcare that can be immediately addressed by applying real-time capacity management technology along with some basic principles of management science to dramatically improve care delivery.

Valerie Fritz

Categories: EMR / Healthcare IT, Real-Time Capacity Management