Customer Experience and Design

Top Technology Trends in Healthcare – July 2013

The healthcare IT field is rapidly developing and changing. Emerging technology and updated regulations put pressure on healthcare providers and health plans to stay ahead of the curve. Perficient creates a monthly list that explores some of the current topics and issues in health IT. This list examines the most talked about issues and technologies that are currently affecting the industry.

HCBlog Top5 Trends

Accountable Care Organizations: First Year Results

An ACO is a group of healthcare providers that partner under a payment and delivery reform model that become collectively accountable for the full continuum of care for a population of patients. This reform model ultimately ties reimbursement to quality metrics and reductions in the total cost of care for the patient population. First year results for ACOs were recently released, with very mixed success and several hospitals dropping out of the program.

The Quantified Self

With the progression of patient engagement, consumers are looking to become involved in their own care and health. The quantified self movement helps patients track their health, physical activity, food consumption, heart rate, and more. From mobile apps to worn digital sensors like the FitBit to implanted devices, patients keep track of their own health data – which eventually may be used to create a more personalized experience.

Healthcare Payment Reform

It is a common opinion that our healthcare system does not provide good value for the care received. Incentives for hospitals are not properly matched with delivering the best possible care at an affordable rate. In response, healthcare payment reform models have been created. Bundled payments reimburse healthcare providers based on the expected cost of a group of services delivered, instead of payment for each treatment provided. Hospital value based purchasing tie reimbursement to the quality of care delivered based on clinical results and patient satisfaction.

The Obamacare Delay

The Patient Protection and the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, was introduced in 2010 as a national healthcare plan to reform the American healthcare system. Starting in October 2013, over 48 million uninsured Americans will be eligible for enrollment in subsidized plans through state-run health insurance exchanges, with annually increasing fines for those who go uncovered. A recent delay in the requirement that employers with over 50 employees provide health insurance or face a penalty has caused a stir, as some interpret this as the government acknowledging the heavy strain of Obamacare.

Population Health Management

PHM aims to improve the overall health of high- and low risk patients by addressing personal health behaviors. PHM places an emphasis on primary care to provide preventative, acute and chronic illness care, which is coupled with efforts to educate patients and encourage behavior and lifestyle changes.

 

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