When a loved one receives an unthinkable diagnosis, such as cancer or dementia, we have many questions. What is the prognosis? How will they physically and emotionally endure the treatment? Is there a genetic link? And as their loved one, what can we do to help? So many questions plague patients and their loved ones. You want to help. You want answers. Where do you turn? When battling horrific diseases, you can’t always cure them, but you can help in the fight. This is what inspired Debi Willis, CEO and founder of our partner PatientLink, to combine her personal experience and technical knowledge to create MyLinks. Debi is a cancer survivor and knows firsthand about the obstacles involved in battling disease. Throughout her fight with cancer, she faced many delays in ordering medical records, test results and reports. Coordinating her […]

Allscripts Vice President of Government Affairs Leigh Burchell and I represented Allscripts and 2bPrecise on January 6 at a select executive roundtable of the healthcare industry’s top leaders, invited by Vice President Joe Biden. We discussed improving patient access to their information, both broadly and within the context of cancer care Vice President Biden raised some great questions and shared his thoughts about increasing the ability of patients to access and share their clinical information, improving access to data and using genomic information of populations to find trends for optimized treatment. In response to the sometimes passionate conversation during the meeting, we followed up afterwards with recommendations for Vice President Biden and the Cancer Moonshot team: 1. Require information sharing with patients. Some provider organizations see great risk in sharing comprehensive information with their patients, concerned about how uninterpreted results can […]

New care models require health IT infrastructure that can interact with multiple solutions, devices and applications in a more streamlined, scalable and efficient way. In the complex IT environments of large health systems, the resources organizations spend integrating disparate systems can stifle innovation. But Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) can help them create a successful health IT ecosystem. NewYork-Presbyterian (NYP), a nonprofit university hospital based in New York City, started using open APIs to achieve interoperability in 2014. According to NYP Director of Information Systems Ravi Koganti, “Based on the continuing success of early projects, APIs have become a go-to technology for new projects because they are easy to use, well-documented and capable of growing quickly.” Clinicians drive the priorities for integration projects between electronic health records (EHRs), third-party software and devices at NYP. Here are three examples of how NYP […]

2 comments

Top 10 client stories of 2016

Our clients are making a difference every day achieving success in delivering smarter health care. Their stories inspire us and, judging by blog readership, they inspire our readers too. Each year, we round up the most-shared, most-read client stories on the blog—prime examples of healthcare leaders achieving the vision of creating open and connected communities. Here are the top ten for 2016: 1) Safer medications with closed-loop delivery Atlantic General Hospital’s (Berlin, Maryland, U.S.A.) efforts to reduce adverse drug events was all about improving patient safety. It is deeply rooted in clinician experiences, such as this one shared by Vice President of Patient Care Colleen Wareing: “I can remember to this day, standing in an ICU 37 years ago…” 2) 4 tips for home care agencies taking on bundled payments What do bundled-payment models mean for home health agencies? Allscripts client Home Care […]

After many months of debate and years of more broadly discussing some of the related concepts, the 21st Century Cures Act (H.R. 34) passed the House and Senate last week, and was signed by the President today. It is a massive piece of legislation, 996 pages in length, and it will have a tremendous impact on medical innovation across the health sector. The law’s primary objectives are to speed new medicines to market through a wide-ranging number of adjustments to the FDA’s work, the clinical trial process and the work of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). But the legislation also includes several important sections that address health IT, including the bulk of the Title IV – Delivery section, which recognizes that delivery reforms are reliant on health IT to move forward. While there are elements of the new law […]

Editor’s note: MACRA stands for the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015, and is Medicare payment reform that goes into effect Jan. 1, 2017. The associated Quality Payment Program (QPP) is the regulation that will shift the reimbursement model from volume-based payments to a more comprehensive value-based framework. In this MACRA 101 blog series, Jim Brulé dives into the details of the two tracks within the QPP, the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and the Advanced Alternative Payment Models (APMs). Participants that choose the optional APM track are agreeing to higher risk but also have the potential for higher potential reward than their counterparts in the default MIPS track. The APM track relies on a category of risk-based payment models with shared characteristics. These models require Certified Electronic Health Record Technology (CEHRT), use quality measures similar to MIPS and […]

The shift to value-based care has caused a number of mergers, acquisitions and strategic partnerships, prompting experts to call 2016 the year of “merger mania” in health care. While these strategies offer benefits and economies of scale, they also introduce new challenges when it comes to integrating clinical data. Allscripts interviewed industry leaders about the interoperability challenges they face as healthcare organizations align, and how they are forging ahead with quality care, population health and analytics initiatives. Here are five tips from the experts on how to position for success in a value-based world: 1. Recognize the cultural aspects of change “Right now, we’re in an environment that has nine different electronic health records and 14 different practice management systems across all practices. We’ve tried for years to get the right level of interoperability in place. But it’s a significant […]

Editor’s note: MACRA stands for the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015, and is Medicare payment reform that goes into effect Jan. 1, 2017. The associated Quality Payment Program (QPP) is the regulation that will shift the reimbursement model from straight fee for service to a more comprehensive value-based framework. In this MACRA 101 blog series, Jim Brulé dives into the details of the two tracks within the QPP, the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and the Advanced Alternative Payment Models (APMs). The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare (CMS) estimates that of the 712,000 Medicare Eligible Clinicians (ECs) that will participate in the QPP, about 87% will default to the MIPS track in the initial years. It has lower risk but also lower incentives, as it was crafted by Congress to ultimately be the less attractive option. Calculating […]

Editor’s Note: This blog post first appeared on The Standard, The Official Blog of Health Level Seven® International. You can view the original post here. Most people have heard of HL7 Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR®) Connectathon events, as well as IHE North America and European Connectathon events, which focus on testing the interoperability of solutions. But did you know that one of the most important content efforts – improving C-CDA® (Consolidated Clinical Document Architecture) documents – is also underway? At each HL7 C-CDA® Implementation-A-Thon, health IT activists have met to improve C-CDA quality and resolve industry differences that result from varying interpretations of standards and implementation guides. Efforts to improve the content of the C-CDA Many efforts are underway across the industry to help all of us improve the content of C-CDA documents. For example, the Relevant and Pertinent project […]

MACRA, which stands for the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015, was legislation that reformed the Medicare payment system to help lower the cost of health care, while delivering better quality and improving health outcomes. It represents a huge change – it creates a more comprehensive value-based framework for payment and combines different quality-based measures into one system. In October, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued the final rule for the new Quality Payment Program (QPP) following direction from the MACRA, and it goes into effect Jan. 1, 2017. As we get closer to this regulatory program, here are some key points to consider: While 2017 is a transition year, Medicare Eligible Clinicians (ECs) must take action to avoid a penalty. CMS anticipates that more than 700,000 Medicare ECs will participate in the QPP. ECs […]