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What We’re Watching: February 19, 2019

HIMSS RECAP

Our CEO, Susan DeVore, delivered a keynote address at HIMSS19 on Friday morning. Taking the stage after ONC National Coordinator Don Rucker, Susan explained that government entities and insurance companies are not going to fix healthcare, but rather all parties working together are necessary to bring about positive change.

What Susan said: “We have a vision for a smarter, more responsive healthcare system. One that is consumer-centered, provider-led, with data flowing seamlessly – and being analyzed and effectively leveraged – to guide decision-making at the point of care.” Susan went on to outline the five interrelated problems the industry has to solve for to get there:

  1. Turning big data into actionable data
  2. Bringing actionable data to informed clinicians
  3. Supporting clinicians with a robust infrastructure that includes claims analytics to measure network utilization, standardized ways to evaluate health and wellness, and performance measures, predictive analytics, and care management tools to help manage employees with high-cost, chronic diseases.
  4. Building an infrastructure with innovative apps that can access insights when decisions are being made.
  5. Unlocking flexible, interoperable information to improve health – this is the most urgent challenge to address in the world of health IT

To watch Susan’s full speech, click here (she starts around the 1:09 mark).

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The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) and CMS released significant new proposed rules on implementing provisions of the 21st Century Cures Act and patient access to data and interoperability. Comments will be accepted until early April.

What we’re saying: Several of the proposals are consistent with Premier’s efforts to improve data availability and use for providers. The most notable aspect of the rules are the steps that will increase access to data currently locked in proprietary systems through standards and application programming interfaces (APIs). APIs will enable a proliferation of consumer and provider apps using EHR data. This will make EHRs more usable and flexible for providers and will democratize data to consumers. We’ll be hosting a webinar on the proposals in the coming weeks.

CUTTING ER COSTS

CMS announced a new alternative payment model designed to avoid unnecessary hospital ED visits called the Emergency Triage, Treat, and Transport (ET3) Model, which provides new ambulance payment options.

What we’re saying: A recently released Premier analysis revealed that many ED visits, particularly those for patients with chronic conditions, could be avoided with more preventative and coordinated practices. We are concerned that this model will further fragment care delivery and have found that integrating care delivery more upstream through ACOs is most effective. As a result, we will urge CMS to enable existing ACOs to integrate care through this model.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

What We’re Watching is a weekly blog focused on the current events Premier is following and their relevance to the work of Premier and its members.

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