Hospital Implications of HIP TN (A Call to Action)
From a financial perspective the idea of bringing our hospital forward with EMR as well as an integrated statewide network will have significant implications. In the short-term, the cost of locating an appropriate vendor and establish EMR both in and outpatients is a costly proposition. The transition won’t be easy or quick and will require constant change when HIP TN integrates with other state HIE’s. To get a real-world understanding of the potential benefits and expenses that come with the integration of health information.
We can consider HealthInfoNet located in Portland, ME, a all-state HIE that anticipates to save 37 million dollars of avoided services, and 15 million dollars in productivity reduction. The areas that can be saved include the cost of fax or paper at $5, compared to $0.25 electronically and savings on virtual health records 50 dollars per patient referral $26 saved for every visit to the ED, and $17.41 per year per patient due to unnecessary lab tests, which adds up to $52 million for a patient population with 3 million members.
The Grand Junction Colorado Quality Health Network has reduced their per-capita Medicare expenditure to 24% less than the average for the nation, and was awarded recognition from the president Obama at the time of 2009. It is the Santa Cruz Health Information Exchange (SCHIE) which has 600 doctors and two hospitals was able to sustain within the first year of its existence and has a monthly subscription fee for all organisations that interact with them. When it comes to government funds available, incentives for meaningful use allow hospitals to achieve twenty-five of twenty-five goals in the initial phase (2011-2012) and to adopt and implementing one of the accepted EHR vendor.
ARRA provided three options to enable EHR to be used to get Medicare reimbursement. They include electronic prescribing health information exchange, e-prescribing and submission of clinical quality measurements. The goals for phase two in 2013 will build on the previous phase. In the implementation phase, EHR as well as Hospital HIE cost are typically billed through the bed or the number of doctors. Costs range from $1500 for a small hospital to as high as $12,000 for a bigger hospital.
The most convincing argument for establishing a functioning Health Information Exchange is patient and safety for the community. Healthbridge’s Healthbridge reduction in outbreak detection by 3 to 5 days is an excellent example of this security benefit. Imagine the consequences in the event of an epidemic virus such as the swine or avian flu. The aim is to prevent the 1918 flu outbreak and eventually help save the lives of those most vulnerable. Rick Krohn of Healthsense makes the case for a socially accountable HIE for patients who are chronically ill or homeless, as well as those who are uninsured.
Since taxpayers are the ones who ultimately shoulder the social burden for the health insurance coverage in our country, the need to eliminate the number of redundant employees, boost efficiency, and deliver healthcare that is comparable to our United States is imperative. The healthcare we receive today is being handled by the Critical Care Unit it’s time to bring it back into balance by operating with excellence beginning at our hospital. Let’s build Babel, the Tower of Babel and enhance communication so that we can give our patients with the care they require!