A recent HIMSS Analytics survey found that patient engagement is top of mind for 72% of health IT leaders. Every stage of Meaningful Use requires some form of patient engagement. Many practices and hospitals are engaging patients in their own health through patient portals. But getting patients to activate and actually use them continues to be a challenge. Practices that communicate more effectively with their patients can achieve higher portal engagement success. One option that has proven effective is HealthBanks eNewsletter, an Allscripts-certified application available on the Allscripts Application Store. Using HealthBanks eNewsletter to reach patients The HealthBanks eNewsletter is certified to integrate with Allscripts TouchWorks® EHR and Allscripts Professional EHRTM and makes it easier for practices to communicate with patients. Allscripts systems automatically subscribe patients to receive e-newsletters so they can be well informed about patient portals, flu clinics, seasonal updates, […]

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ICD-10 strategies: Educate everyone, early and often

  • Jeff Goldstein, MD, MS FACHE
  • 04/29/2015

ICD-10 is the largest mandate in U.S. healthcare history, and it will require diligent, comprehensive actions to be fully prepared for the transition. This is the third post in a four-part series that explores successful strategies in key areas of ICD-10 readiness: general approach, governance, education and standardization of documentation. When Allscripts conducts an ICD-10 readiness assessment, a major area of review is to evaluate the organization’s educational programs. All too often organizations provide education for just the clinical providers (i.e., physicians, nurse practitioners and coding staff). But in fact, ICD-10 education should extend across the entire organization, be it a hospital, office practice, home health agency or any entity involved in direct patient care. ICD-10 training for clinical staff has slowed to a halt With the one-year delay in ICD-10 implementation, nearly every organization I have been working with […]

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4 essential steps to forming an ACO

January 2016 may seem like a long ways off. But if you’re thinking about forming an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) for next year, the clock is already ticking. The fee-for-service reimbursement model is shifting to value-based-care financial models, such as an ACO. The U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) set a goal of tying 30% of its payments to these types of arrangements by the end of 2016, and 50% by the end of 2018. Now is the time to start planning. Here’s a checklist of the essential steps organizations should take in 2015 to be ready to start an ACO in January: 1. April & May 2015 – Decide if the ACO model is the right one for you. Assess your current situation with questions like these: Are physician incomes going up or down? Are your physicians properly aligned […]

Adopting significant new features and functions in a fully deployed practice management system requires strong leadership and deliberate efforts from our early adopter clients.  We watch the experiences of our early adopter partners closely, and their feedback truly helps shape the solution that we then make available to our clients. Several of our early adopters shared what they liked best about our newest version of Allscripts Practice ManagementTM 14.0.2, which became generally available last week: “Everyone here at SAMA is super excited about the new look of [Practice Management]!  They love the tabs they can have across the top and IT loves that they don’t have 3 [Practice Management] programs pulled at the same time…The collection account detail on the toolbar (C$) is so much easier to use at check in – no excuses for not checking things out while a […]

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ICD-10 strategies: Lead a successful change with strong governance

  • Jeff Goldstein, MD, MS FACHE
  • 04/21/2015

ICD-10 is the largest mandate in U.S. healthcare history, and it will require diligent, comprehensive actions to be fully prepared for the transition. This is the second post in a four-part series that explores successful strategies in key areas of ICD-10 readiness: general approach, governance, education and standardization of documentation. For a project as vast and complex as ICD-10, a successful organization needs a strong governance structure assigned specifically to this endeavor. Setting up the governance structure Leadership needs to define the operational structure required for ICD-10 readiness. It’s essential to have an ICD-10 executive sponsor and an ICD-10 “Czar” responsible for maintaining the project on a steady and consistent path. Once leadership designates these roles, they need to communicate them throughout the organization. The next step is to establish an operational committee with representation from the key areas affected […]

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R.I.P. SGR

Nine years ago, when I started developing a government relations function at Allscripts, it was a different world. No HITECH, no CMMI, no significant government attention on health IT at all, really. To set my agenda, I learned from our clients what mattered most to them. The number one answer I consistently heard? The repeal of the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR), which has been the means by which the CMS has had to calculate payments to physicians since 1997. It was universally – by providers and policy makers alike – reviled. In the years since, the number of healthcare IT topics in D.C. has grown exponentially, along with the associated level of interest by legislators and regulators alike. We’ve discussed the complexities and opportunities of interoperability, debated the challenges of building a trusted patient safety structure, explained the difference between […]

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ICD-10 strategies: Use this time wisely

ICD-10 is the largest mandate in U.S. healthcare history, and it will require diligent, comprehensive actions to be fully prepared for the transition. This is the first post in a four-part series that explores successful strategies in key areas of ICD-10 readiness: general approach, governance, education and standardization of documentation. Benjamin Franklin once wrote, “…nothing in this world is certain except death and taxes.” Most of us in the healthcare industry agree it’s time to add ICD-10 to this list.  On October 1, 2015, the United States will join 25 other countries in using ICD-10, the version that has been the standard for coding diseases, findings, medical complaints, causes and conditions of illness and injury since 1995. When CMS announced last year that it would delay ICD-10 until 2015, the healthcare industry breathed a collective sigh of relief. Unfortunately, much […]

One third of the U.S. population has at least one chronic disease, such as cancer, asthma, diabetes or heart disease. Chances are good that we, or people we love, have experienced the challenges of coordinating care for these complex conditions. Clinicians recognize the importance of staying connected to their patients. But teams at small practices may not have enough volume – or stability of volume – to justify hiring additional clinical staff to coordinate care for complex patients. Taking full advantage of the new reimbursement opportunity In 2013, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) launched a program to begin reimbursing for non-face-to-face care coordination services. It’s called the Chronic Care Management program, and its goal is to improve care for patients with two or more chronic diseases. CMS has a list of about 22 things the practice needs to do […]

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5 gaps in care we can close with collaboration

We’re partnering with life sciences companies to address gaps in care, one of the key steps in better managing population health and improving patient outcomes. It’s important to collaborate with all stakeholders – patients, providers, payers, life sciences and health IT companies – because that’s how we’ll succeed with value-based care. How is Allscripts working with life sciences companies? Here are a few examples: #1 – Are clinicians identifying enough patients who need clinical intervention? Allscripts has independently analyzed best-in-class guidelines that address gaps in care for certain therapeutic areas. Allscripts builds those guidelines into point-of-care alerts. Sponsored by life sciences companies, we are educating providers and practices about how to use the Allscripts alerts to close gaps in care for patients. We have partnerships in place to address rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, asthma, vaccines, and other therapeutic areas. These programs […]

It’s a new dawn for Allscripts SunriseTM , our clinical and financial solution for hospitals. The industry is taking notice, and so are clients. Below are a few comments that clients shared on the KLAS Research website: “I could go on and on about the open architecture. We are constantly developing things to bolt onto the system. It is fun. For me, the fact that we can do that differentiates Allscripts’ product from the rest. We have an entirely different strategic initiative around our provider documentation for ambulatory. We are using a product for that which is not innately part of Allscripts. But because we can get under the hood of the Allscripts system, we are using this other product to build our provider documentation. Providers get the feeling that they are in the same primary medical record, but we can […]