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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 […]

Following every election cycle, the United States experiences a change in policy and direction. During his campaign, Donald Trump said little about his plans for health IT, precision medicine or delivery system reform, so it will take some time for us to have a real sense of his administration’s thoughts on these subjects. Since his election, I’ve already had many conversations with healthcare policy experts. Insights from these discussions include: 1) Interoperability – Continues to be a priority Congress remains interested in monitoring success with healthcare interoperability and the possibility of legislative action, including attention to further standards development.  Congress will also be paying close attention to the implementation of the MACRA, gauging whether it is successfully driving the adjusted behavior from clinicians that they are seeking. 2) MACRA – Adjustments may take place, but the core program will remain consistent […]

Sometimes the best way to capture information is with a picture. Photographs can help clinicians diagnose conditions and monitor progress, especially in specialties such as plastic surgery, dermatology, burn care, wound care and vein care. Clinical photography can be helpful in these cases. However, due to the technical skill needed to capture accurate, repeatable photographs, these pictures rarely provide comparable, measurable (read “quality”) data for providers. While clinical photography systems that have mechanical positioning, lighting and software are a valuable means of standardizing images, they can be costly and lack the mobility, simplicity and connectivity of mobile devices. Epitomyze, Inc., part of Allscripts Developer Program, seeks to bridge this technology gap between legacy clinical photography systems and modern telemedicine. Set to revolutionize the role of clinical photography in medicine, the epitomyze™ capture app enables mobile devices to easily and inexpensively […]

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Advancing patient-centered practice transformation

  • Dr. Ramanujam (Ram) Venugopalan, BHMS, MHA, PCMH CCE, PGDMLS
  • 11/07/2016

Healthcare market dynamics are shifting toward value-based care. For primary care practices seeking patient-centered care and the associated financial incentives, the Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) model is the sweet spot. As sweeping delivery system reform kicks off in 2017, practices can look forward to a clear regulatory roadmap to align their efforts with the PCMH model and succeed in their journey to becoming truly patient centered. Increasing focus on patient-centered care Early attempts to define the framework for PCMH date back to the 1960s, with the goal of offering patient-centered, family-oriented and family-coordinated care delivery to families. Years of experience related to success of this model has led to the formation of many recognition programs. Today’s National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) PCMH program is a widely known offering to recognize practices demonstrating patient centeredness. As of July 2015, NCQA […]