Last month, I took part in a summit that attracted some of healthcare’s brightest executive leaders. At one point I had the good fortune of joining in on a roundtable discussion about patient access. While the direction of the conversation changed many times, a theme began to arise in my mind. The insight, both simple and yet profound, was that just about every leader at the table defined patient access from a very different lens and a very different world view. While we all believed patient access is a critical priority, how to define it and ultimately measure it remained a point of inconsistency.
Judging by global online search volume, they’re not alone in that struggle. In January 2016, search volumes for “patient access” reached an all-time high, surpassing even “population health.”
And that makes sense given what we’re observing in today’s rapidly shifting landscape—growing consolidation, shifting reimbursements, and increasing patient choice. That means any evaluation of patient flow necessitates consideration of best practices around managing and bolstering patient volumes while serving a more broadly distributed population.
In this issue of Patient Flow Quarterly™, guest contributor and long-time healthcare executive Tim Chapman shares his insights about why patient access needs to be brought to the forefront as a strategic priority. We’ll also look at how health systems in competitive markets are navigating the patient access dilemma and finding ways to maximize resources.
Thank you to everyone who shared their kind words about our inaugural issue. We hope that this follow-up is equally, if not more, thought provoking in your journey to advance patient flow.
Kris Kaneta is the Editor-in-Chief of Patient Flow Quarterly™ and TeleTracking’s Vice President of Marketing.