Forward-looking healthcare organizations know that big data and analytics will drive significant change in how they care for patients. A select group of healthcare leaders joined me recently in Chicago for an interactive Allscripts Analytics summit on this topic. We asked them: What are your high-level strategic priorities for population health analytics? Here are responses from the Berkshire Health Systems Chief Medical Information Officer Mark Snowise, M.D. and Health First System Vice President of Decision Support Analytics Frank Wang: Allscripts Analytics Asks: Mark Snowise, MD Allscripts Analytics Asks: Frank Wang Today’s clinicians need tools that help stratify populations, identify gaps in care, benchmark outcomes and provide pathways to patient compliance. Only then can they take action to improve care. That means they need point-of-care, real-time analytics, cohort management, predictive models and quality metrics and dashboards for population health insights across […]

The Health Care Payment and Learning Action Network (HCPLAN) recently held its first summit in Washington, D.C.  I joined about 250 healthcare industry leaders at this event, which demonstrated that this group will play a significant role in shaping health care’s transition from fee-for-service to value-based-care models. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) created the HCPLAN earlier this year towards the goal of moving 30% of Medicare reimbursements to alternative payment models in 2016 and 50% by 2018. Through the HCPLAN, HHS will work with private payers, employers, consumers, providers, states and state Medicaid programs, and other partners to expand alternative payment models into their programs. Two of the main topics at the summit were the Alternative Payment Model (APM) Framework and Medicare Access and Chip Re-authorization Act (MACRA). Here’s a summary of key points in each […]

UK HealthCare (Lexington, Kentucky, U.S.A.) uses Allscripts EPSi™ to combine clinical and financial data for more complete and accurate decision support information. As detailed in a recent case study, this integrated data helped the organization measure outcomes from the modification of its transfusion program, which saved more than $2.4 million in direct costs over five years. Why give two units when one will do? When a patient has abnormally low hemoglobin (Hb) levels, it is common practice for clinicians to order Red Blood Cell (RBC) transfusions to help carry oxygen to all parts of the body. However, the threshold or “trigger” for when such transfusions are necessary has changed over the last several decades. UK HealthCare used evidence-based guidance to evaluate its policy on RBC triggers and determined it could safely lower its transfusion trigger from 8 g/dL Hb to […]

Studies show that some physicians are spending more than 40% of their time on patient notes, leading many providers to feel like they’re spending less time with patients and more time with patient documentation. Several alternatives try and address this issue, from creating templates that enable a clinician to easily document common problems, to hiring scribes to handle data entry while the physician is examining the patient. Each method has its advantages and offers some benefits, but Allscripts Developer Program partner NoteSwift offers an alternative solution that uses voice direction to help providers move quickly through the patient chart and document or place orders with speed and accuracy. Developed by a neurologist who felt the pain and tedium of patient documentation in his own practice, NoteSwift enhances productivity for providers in every specialty so they can see more patients and […]

In health care, usability of software is a patient safety issue. It’s why Allscripts employs User-Centered Design (UCD) principles to gather clinician feedback on our solutions throughout the development process. A great example of this process at work is the recent adaptation of Allscripts Homecare™ to a mobile application. Home health nurses are a specialized group, often traveling to patients’ homes to provide care. Despite the mobile nature of their work, there were not many mobile applications on the market when we started this effort. Our objective was to streamline their workflow and develop a version of Homecare that nurses could use on a tablet, instead of a laptop. What we learned from “ride-alongs” with home health and hospice nurses We started the project with ethnographic research, which means we rode along with more than a dozen nurses in the […]


Life after ICD-10 at Great Lakes Eye Care

Like most of the healthcare industry, Allscripts spent years preparing for the ICD-10 transition, which occurred on Oct. 1, 2015. Our Allscripts Payerpath® team monitored our systems and claims closely, and as anticipated, we did not see any issues related to ICD-10 in the days after the transition. Our operations consultants reached out to Payerpath clients, including Shari Payne, CPC, Administrator for Great Lakes Eye Care (St. Joseph, Michigan, U.S.A.). On October 2, Payne responded with an email so enthusiastic, we just had to share: We had ZERO errors today. We had a full house of patients, we did not decrease the schedule at all, and did not have ONE SINGLE ERROR. WAY beyond my biggest hopes!…Thank you so much for including us in your end-to-end user training…..what a benefit to us. We are all dancing the dance of joy today! […]


18 tips for patient portal success

There is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to patient engagement. Teams have to design a game plan with tactics that work best for their organizations. Clients have shared what’s worked for them, and we’ve compiled a list of some of their most creative and successful ideas: 1) Work as a team. “It takes a team. Provider buy-in is essential, however, we do believe it starts at the front desk. Before the patient leaves we want them to hear at least three times, ‘Hey, did you hear about this cool new tool we have to offer you?’” Melissa Huff, ClO, Clinics of North Texas 2) Start with employees. “We started with rolling it out to our employees. We wanted to gain buy-in, and they also helped us test the product before we launched it publicly,” Jaime Crawford, Manager of Communications and Digital Media, […]

2015 has been a year of great promise and progress for the healthcare industry. The recent announcement of Meaningful Use Stage 3 will strengthen efforts toward health data exchange in the United States. True interoperability will enable more predictive, personalized approaches to health care, such as precision medicine. We’re sharing industry insights and client outcomes through our magazine, Continuum. Highlights in the second issue include: Executive Insight: CEO Paul Black on Achieving the Promise of Health IT. What the industry can do to advance interoperability and a call to stop data bullying. Delivering Care When Every Minute Counts. How St. Clair Hospital’s emergency department reduced waiting times with Allscripts Sunrise™. Q&A: The Rise of Precision Medicine.  Senior Vice President Assaf Halevy describes how technology will help hasten this emerging field into health care’s mainstream. 10 Creative Ways to Improve Patient Portal […]


4 generations of medical innovation

Founded in 1911, Dominion Medical Associates (Richmond, Virginia, U.S.A.) has a long history of delivering excellent health care to its patients. In a recent case study, Director of Clinical Research Richard “AJ” Jackson Jr., MBA, CRC said, “My great-grandfather founded our practice, and through the generations we’ve been grateful to be able to maintain our independence and give back to the community.” Small but mighty With three physicians and one mid-level provider, the practice serves more than 20,000 active patients across two locations. Dominion Medical Associates uses Allscripts Professional™ Suite to participate in many innovative initiatives, typically only taken on by larger practices. For example: Value-based-care payment models – As health care shifts from fee-for-service to value-based-care payment models, Dominion Medical Associates can use existing data to adapt. It joined an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) in 2014. It is also […]

Healthcare technology must meet specific and complex needs to meet the requirements of surgical care. To provide a safe, high-quality perioperative experience – for its patients, surgeons and clinicians – Springhill Medical Center (Mobile, Alabama, U.S.A.) turned to Allscripts Sunrise Surgical Care™. We recently interviewed Springhill Vice President and Chief Nursing Executive Paul Read to get his thoughts on the solution one year after implementing. What challenges did you experience before implementing Sunrise Surgical Care? Before implementing Sunrise, we were using another vendor’s system. The biggest issue for us was duplication of workflow between the surgical system and our Allscripts Sunrise electronic health record (EHR). The intraoperative portion of the documentation between systems did not live within Sunrise, which made it difficult for clinicians to access information real-time. Describe your implementation experience with the solution. We went live in August […]