Consortium News

  • 01 Dec 2017 9:55 AM | Anonymous
    CASEY ROSS @caseymross  |  |  NOVEMBER 29, 2017

    Value is medicine’s mantra of the moment.

    It is the centerpiece of efforts to reform payment and change the way medicine is delivered. Backers of the value movement believe the entire medical system — and every transaction within it — must be based on this seminally important five-letter word.

    But a survey released Wednesday by the University of Utah shows that, in health care, value has no universal meaning — 88 percent of doctors equated value with quality care, while patients and employers provided a more nuanced definition, mixing in measures of cost, customer service, and worker productivity.

    The lack of consensus is not merely a philosophical matter. It is a huge stumbling block in the effort to deliver more bang for the buck in American health care, said University of Utah chief medical quality officer Dr. Bob Pendleton, who worked on the survey and argues the term value has become political “propaganda” in medicine.

    “It seems to be used in any way people want it to be used, to fill their own agendas,” he said. “The conversation around value is driven by large lobby groups — hospital associations and large corporate medical groups. What’s missing is the voice of practicing doctors, patients, and employers.”

    The national survey, conducted by Leavitt Partners, collected responses from 5,031 patients, 687 physicians and 538 employers. All parties agreed the cost of health care is too high. But they gave cost different levels of significance in their value equations. Doctors tended to focus almost entirely on quality measures. But employers said cost is a matter of primary concern, with nearly 60 percent ranking it as a key component of value.

    Patient definitions of value were divided among quality, cost, convenience, and customer service. When asked to choose statements that reflect what they value, the one patients selected most (45 percent) was that out-of-pocket costs must be affordable.

    Dr. Lisa Simpson, chief executive of Academy Health, a research and policy group that was not involved in compiling the survey, said it will take more clarity around costs and quality to get patients and doctors on the same page.

    She said neither party knows what medical services cost, and quality measures often miss the mark, focusing on technical definitions or process issues rather than whether a knee replacement patient can climb stairs or lift a grandchild.

    “You want to measure functional outcomes,” Simpson said. “It’s not just, ‘Did you get better? Or did you get an infection and get re-hospitalized?’ It’s more about whether you were able to return to function.”

    In the survey, 76 percent of physicians said they consider cost when making treatment decisions. But Pendleton said physicians lack access to accurate pricing information and are often flying blind in those discussions.

    Furthermore, he said, the average doctor takes care of patients with 14 or 15 different insurance plans, adding yet another layer of complexity. “Somehow we have to create a path where in the clinic those costs can become an effective part of the conversation,” he said. “Right now, they are certainly very opaque.”

    The disconnect is becoming even more pronounced at a time when patients are paying higher deductibles. Part of the rationale for those higher deductibles is that they turn patients into smart shoppers who carefully consider what they buy.

    But Allan Baumgarten, a health care consultant and researcher, said providers have an incentive to obscure cost information from patients, so they can steer them into settings where they can charge added fees. A common example is a provider that schedules a lab test in a hospital where it can charge a “facility fee” that often adds hundreds of dollars to the bill.

    “Providers systems will cloak that information so that it’s not readily apparent to the consumer,” Baumgarten said.

    Among doctors who answered the survey, 73 percent expressed dissatisfaction with the prices patients pay for medical services. Fifty-five percent said one of the most important components of value is selecting the most appropriate test or treatment for the patient.

    Pendleton said in determining appropriateness, physicians must consider clinical and cost factors at the same time, so that ordering an MRI for a patient with low back pain is done in a calculated way, and not as a matter of course.

    “For that patient with low back pain, there is more and more evidence to say a trial of physical therapy and over-the-counter ibuprofen actually has as good, if not better, outcomes,” he said. “And if we look at the cost of that, it’s a tenth or a hundredth of some of the other options.”

    Read the original post here at

  • 30 Nov 2017 12:35 PM | Anonymous

    MARINA DEL REY, Calif., Nov. 30, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- 4medica announced today that it has joined the Massachusetts Health Data Consortium (MHDC), one of the most active non-profits in the nation dedicated to leveraging data and technology to improve health outcomes. 4medica joins the association as an executive member whose expertise in clinical data integration, along with large-scale, accurate patient identity matching, will be of particular value for MHDC's focus on speeding the exchange and sharing of data between providers and payers in 2018.

    "As an organization that is committed to bringing in the best thinking around the country, we are delighted to welcome 4medica to the Massachusetts Health Data Consortium. We look forward to the insight 4medica leaders will bring to our members and health technology leaders, for whom health data exchange and interoperability are top priorities," said Denny Brennan, Executive Director, Massachusetts Health Data Consortium.

    Brennan added that the company's solutions also address these member objectives. "4medica's innovative and cloud-based eMPI and clinical data exchange capabilities enable healthcare organizations of all sizes to leapfrog more costly and time-consuming on-premises solutions," he noted.

    What's driving the hunger for health information

    Now that America's health records have been largely digitized, the next phase is to combine this clinical information with claims and other data sources in order to glean insights that lower our national healthcare bill while raising overall quality of care. States have varied in their progress here, with Massachusetts emerging as an undeniable trailblazer. Today, almost all contracted physicians in the state work under value-based or risk-based contracts. Further, Massachusetts hospitals will be seeing significant increases in the number of patients under risk-based contracts.

    In order for these contracts to succeed, providers and payers must be able to access, share and make use of large troves of patient data. 4medica fits well in this landscape with certain key capabilities. First, via its clinical data exchange solution, 4medica can offer access to a fuller, timely picture of patient health than mere claims data can. Second, 4medica can assure this picture is about the right patient, with its powerfully accurate patient identity matching technology that processes millions of identities in seconds.

    "The Massachusetts Healthcare Data Consortium really gets that data is indispensable for healthcare today, especially the ability to share data about patients inside and outside of the hospital. Their charter and mission mirror our own vision to improve healthcare, so we really look forward to demonstrating our value to their members--not just as a software company, but as a mentor in the value-based era," concluded Gregg Church, President, 4medica.

    About MHDC

    Since 1978, the Massachusetts Health Data Consortium (MHDC), a not-for-profit corporation, remains the trusted and objective facilitator of health information and technology transformation among payers, providers, industry associations, state and federal agencies, individuals and technology and services companies. The Consortium is the oldest organization of its kind in the country.

    Founded by the Commonwealth's major public and private healthcare organizations and chartered by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, MHDC strives to improve the quality and cost effectiveness of healthcare through:

    • Rigorous and accessible health data analyses,
    • Education and leadership development; and
    • Trusted, objective and effective convening of the Commonwealth's health information community in advancing multi-stakeholder collaborations.

    To join the Consortium, or for more membership info, visit us at

  • 21 Nov 2017 9:33 AM | Anonymous

    Dr. Neel Shah, our first Elliot Stone intern, has written an interesting piece at Politico about models of care that are less bed-focused than the traditional model.  Here's a snippet....:

    "Some corners of the health care world are already starting to embrace new, less bed-focused models of care. Ambulatory surgical centers have latched on to a strong business model for the growing number of operations for which several days in bed are neither required nor recommended. A venture-capital based birthing center franchise is currently aiming to do the same—birthing families are often admitted and discharged on the same day, and beds are in the corner of the room (for resting and breastfeeding after the baby is born), rather than in the center; the idea is to encourage the mom to use movement as much as possible to support her labor by literally sidelining the bed. Health systems are increasingly investing in other types of spaces where bedrest is not the default, including skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities, as well as home visiting nurses and health coaches to help high-need patients with acute and chronic conditions stay out of the hospital."

    Here's a link to the full article.

    Dr. Neel Shah is an Assistant Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology at Harvard Medical School, and director of the Delivery Decisions Initiative at Ariadne Labs.

  • 23 Jun 2017 2:22 PM | Anonymous
    Positions available include:
    • Health Informatics Analyst
    • Health Policy Analyst - Health Analytics and Finance
    • Health Policy Analyst - Pricing
    • Network Administrator
    • Part-Time Editor - Betsy Lehman Center
    • Project Manager
    • Research Analyst, Health System Performance
    • Senior Health Informatics Analyst
    • Senior Research Analyst, Health System Performance

    Click here for more information and to apply for any of these positions.

  • 14 Jun 2017 1:21 PM | Anonymous

    Retrieved from Harvard Business Review, June 14, 2017
    by Harsha Madannavar, Todd Clark & Joseph Johnson

    Most data-driven healthcare IT (HCIT) providers aren’t going to survive. Their business models are at serious risk of failure in the next three to five years. To beat those odds, they need to evolve dramatically, and fast, to a point where they are not selling data at all.

    Like any number of industries, healthcare is being transformed by the explosion of low-cost data. In healthcare, the transformation is driven in large part by electronic medical record adoption and digitization. There have been many benefits. End users can take advantage of quantities of newly available information to solve problems in population health, clinical decision support, and patient engagement, among other applications. And ease of access means ease of market entry: Emerging data providers can get on their feet quickly and create new sources of competition. For example, AiCure and Propeller Health are using very different methods to generate patient medication adherence data. Competition leads to better offerings and more choice. What could go wrong?nty, actually. End users can be overwhelmed by the flood of raw data and reports that may not fit well with their existing workflow or answer their specific question. And for data providers, ubiquitous availability of information and low barriers to entry means that the competitive advantage gained from the data itself can be quickly eroded.

    Yet too many HCIT providers are still pursuing that data-centric advantage. The bulk of HCIT investment supports startups that sell data — clinical or operational information that is otherwise difficult for clients to obtain or to organize. These firms regard data as the source of business value. But as more data and more data providers flood the marsssket, a competitive position based solely on data becomes impossible to defend. Consider the move by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to publish extensive Medicare enrollment and utilization data, and to make it accessible and easy to interpret via the CMS website. Information that would once have been proprietary — and premium-priced — is now widely available, for free.  CMS’s move illustrates a broad trend. Increasingly, for most HCIT firms, data is a commodity.

    What’s a data provider to do?

    One solution is to become the authoritative source for a particular kind of information. Some firms have managed it, in healthcare and in other arenas — think of QuintilesIMS as a source of pharmaceutical sales data, Nielsen as the authority on TV viewer habits, and the U.S. Census for information about U.S. demographics. In theory, a healthcare IT provider can follow their lead and try to corner the market on a data set. But to do this in today’s landscape is a tall order. The same dynamics we’ve described — widespread access, low costs, low barriers to entry, commoditization of data sets — mean it’s an open question whether this strategy can work.

    A better option is to evolve from providing data to providing insight.

    Companies moving this direction aim to solve problems within a use case, for example, decision support. They might focus on a specific population such as cancer, diabetes, or Alzheimer’s patients and a specific insight about disease progression, pain management or treatment options. They address an underlying stakeholder need such as managing the total cost of care. Clients get what’s really needed —raw data transformed to support better decisions. And HCIT providers escape the commodity trap.

    The marketplace is rapidly moving in this direction. IBM established its Watson Health business unit to apply cognitive computing analyses to healthcare and in 2016 announced plans to acquire Truven Health Analytics for $2.6 billion. IBM plans to leverage Truven’s vast data collection — sourced from more than 8,500 insurers, hospitals and government agencies — to  support specific use cases, using Watson’s analytical capabilities. For example, some Watson Health initiatives focus on improving oncology diagnostics and identifying the most effective treatment protocols for specific cancer patient subgroups.

    Another solution provider, Proteus Digital Health, is engaging with health systems to provide insights into actual medication use and resulting health patterns. Understanding treatment effectiveness for at-risk patients — in particular for patients with uncontrolled hypertension and diabetes —  is a priority for many health plans. Proteus analytics support patient and family engagement and care-team coaching to drive clinical improvement. Other data analytics services based on accurate medication-intake information, in combination with physiological measures, also promise to improve clinical decision-making, reduce doctors’ workload, and improve outcomes.

    The transformation from data provider to data analytics services is hard. It requires significant changes in business models, staffing and management approach. But we believe it’s the only option. The late economist and marketing professor Theodore Levitt famously said “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill, they want a quarter-inch hole.” In health care, providers don’t want data, they want solutions that lower costs and improve outcomes. HCIT firms that deliver those solutions are the ones that will be around in five years’ time.

  • 12 Jun 2017 8:40 AM | Anonymous

    Press release June 8, 2017

    BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration announced today that 18 health care organizations across the state have been selected to participate in MassHealth’s Accountable Care Organization (ACO) program beginning January 2018.  The 18 ACOs, networks of physicians, hospitals and other health care providers will work together to provide integrated  health care for their patients with the goals of improving their health and containing costs.  These ACOs are expected to cover over 900,000 MassHealth members and include approximately 4,500 primary care providers.

    "Our administration was pleased to secure an innovative Medicaid waiver worth over $50 billion for the Commonwealth and it has allowed us to begin making the first major overhaul of MassHealth in 20 years,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “The restructured Accountable Care Organization program will promote integration and coordination to benefit patients, while holding providers accountable for their quality and cost.”

    “We are pleased with the overall quality and depth of the health care providers that are joining us in restructuring MassHealth’s current fee-for-service payment system,” said Massachusetts Secretary for Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders.  “All of the ACOs selected will integrate their efforts with community-based health and social service organizations to improve behavioral health, long-term supports and health-related social needs for MassHealth members as appropriate.”

    The ACO program is a major component in the state’s five-year innovative 1115 Medicaid waiver that brings in significant new federal investment to restructure the current health care delivery system for MassHealth’s 1.9 million members.   The waiver provides $1.8 billion in new federal investments, referred to as Delivery System Reform Incentive Payments (DSRIP), to support the transition of health care providers providing value-based care.

    "We know the current fee-for-service system leads to gaps in care and inefficiencies,” said Dan Tsai, Assistant Secretary and Director of the MassHealth program. “The ACOs we selected demonstrate a strong commitment to improving care for the members they serve and will be held to high standards for quality and access of care.”

    Since December 2016, six ACOs have been participating in the MassHealth ACO Pilot program covering approximately 160,000 members and have already demonstrated early successes.  For example, Partners Healthcare ACO is connecting members with home and community based services to avoid costly hospitalizations wherever possible, and to bring primary care services to members in their homes.  MassHealth anticipates that the positive results demonstrated by the Pilot ACO program will continue with the full implementation and investments under this reform.

    There are three ACO models giving providers a range of options to reflect the diversity in the Massachusetts delivery system.  Two of the models include ACOs partnering with Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) to improve care for members, while in the third model ACO providers will contract directly with MassHealth. All models support MassHealth’s commitment to:

    • Expand substance misuse disorder treatment,
    • Invest in primary care and community workforce development,
    • Invest in Community Partners for behavioral health and long term services and supports. MassHealth is currently in the process of certifying Community Partners and anticipates entering contract negotiations in August 2017,
    • Provide clinical and cultural support for populations with behavioral health and long term service needs, and
    • Allow for innovative ways of addressing the social determinants of health.  

    When fully implemented, ACOs will be the way the majority of MassHealth members receive care.  Member enrollment into ACOs is tied to their relationship with their current primary care physician to ensure continuity of this important relationship.   Members who wish to opt-out of the ACO enrollment may do so within 90 days of being enrolled in a plan.  MassHealth will also maintain the traditional managed care organization (MCO) program and is in the process of re-procuring it this year. In addition to partnering with ACOs, MCOs will continue to serve MassHealth members not enrolled in ACOs.

    Additional information on MassHealth’s planned restructuring and payment reforms for its 1.9 million members may be found on the MassHealth Innovations website at

  • 15 May 2017 11:41 AM | Anonymous

    Harvard University Health Services is looking for a Director of Health Information - Medical Records Services.

    Applicants please apply online here, referencing ID 42185BR, or view the complete job posting here.

    Duties & Responsibilities 

    • Responsible for all aspects of management of the Health Information Services (Medical Records) Department, ensuring smooth operations and availability of timely clinical information to Harvard University Health Services (HUHS) practitioners and to authorized users and requestors. Works with senior leadership in the organization to help ensure that clinical systems and documentation processes are used appropriately and in compliance with federal and state regulations and HUHS policies.
    • Maintains coverage and eligibility data, including exchange of insurance information between HUHS, other Harvard offices and third party payors. Acts as HUHS Privacy Officer.
    • Manages the process for incoming students to assess their compliance with State and University immunization regulations, and meet external deadlines. Is a member of the HUHS EMR Super User community. Supports the HUHS LEAN initiative by championing the implementation of LEAN within Health Information Services.

    Major responsibilities:

    • Develops and administers department budget, policies and procedures.
    • Directs activities of the department's staff. 
    • Maintains an adequate level of staff and makes decisions on hiring, performance evaluations, salary adjustments and disciplinary actions in accordance with University policies. 
    • Ensures timely scanning of paper medical information into the EMR. Oversees processing of EKGs. Collaborates in the continuous improvement of the electronic medical record system. 
    • Assists clinic managers with the implementation of automated system modules of the EMR. Helps to ensure the integrity of electronic medical record and that the documentation standards and practices in use at HUHS are consistent with industry best practices. Oversees medical record procedures in the HUHS satellite clinics. 
    • Assures that Health Information Services Department supports the operational and clinical needs of other HUHS departments. 
    • Controls and monitors the release of medical information from patient files in accordance with federal and state law and internal HUHS policies. 
    • Develops and maintains computerized statistical reports for routine analysis. Responsible for creating timely, accurate and meaningful ad hoc reports from the medical record system. 
    • Oversees exchange of demographic and insurance data between HUHS and other Harvard departments and outside contracted organizations. Facilitates performance of various medical record review functions as mandated by licensing and accreditation organizations and 3rd party payors. 
    • Responsible for maintenance of demographic and insurance data for students and HUHS members. 
    • Oversees review and data entry of student immunization information for compliance with state immunization regulations and University policy. Maintains electronic immunization tracker. 
    • Contributes to HUHS wide goals by being creative, collaborative, and service oriented as well as by participating in HUHS committees on performance improvement projects. 
    • As Privacy Officer maintains all privacy related policies. Investigates all privacy incidents and report them in accordance with government regulations. Co-chairs Medical Records Committee. 
    • Chairs HIPAA Privacy Least Privilege Workgroup. Presents HIPAA Privacy and Security training at New Employee Orientation. 
    • Manages content for annual staff HIPAA privacy and security training. Ensures that HUHS maintains up to date understanding of changes in legislation in regard to collection, maintenance and use of the medical record and that changes are properly communicated to HUHS leadership and additional staff as appropriate. 
    • Flags affected policies and procedures to be updated accordingly.

    Basic Qualifications Required:

    • Degree in progress for or Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) or Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT). 
    • B.S. in health information or related degree. 
    • 5 years progressive experience in medical records department leadership.

    Additional Qualifications & Responsibilities:

    • Demonstrated competency with one or more Electronic Medical Records systems.
    • Must be able to effectively interact with patients, staff, clinicians and executive levels of an organization.
    • Desired – Understanding of SQL and reporting tools.
    • Prepares yearly operating and capital budgets in accordance to established guidelines. 
    • Develops short and long range goals and objectives for the department and monitors. 
    • Provides on going supervision to staff and provides regular performance feedback. 
    • Conducts timely performance reviews for staff per HUHS guidelines. 
    • Works effectively with team/work group or those outside formal line of responsibility to accomplish organizational goals; takes actions that respects the needs and contributions of others. 
    • Identifies and clearly defines problems, evaluates and weighs alternatives, works effectively to remove barriers and implements solutions. 
    • Demonstrates initiative and contributes to HUHS wide goals by being creative, collaborative, and service oriented as well as by participating in HUHS committees on performance improvement projects.

    Harvard University Health Services Overview

    Harvard University Health Services is a multi-specialty medical practice exclusively for members of the Harvard community – students, faculty, staff, retirees, and their dependents.

    Harvard University Health Services has four locations across the Harvard campuses and many of our clinicians have affiliations with area hospitals including, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Children's Hospital Boston, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Massachusetts General Hospital, Mount Auburn Hospital, and New England Baptist Hospital.

    Harvard University Health Services medical teams collaborate and provide confidential, personal care to each patient. Our Primary Care/Internal Medicine teams are led by primary care physicians and also include nurse practitioners, registered nurses, and health assistants. These teams work closely with our patients to provide high-quality, outpatient care in a friendly and comfortable environment.

    Other services at Harvard University Health Services include counseling and mental/behavioral health, medical and surgical sub-specialties, 24-hour urgent care, an on-site laboratory, ultrasound and radiology, physical therapy, a pharmacy, vision and dental care clinics, and Harvard’s Center for Wellness. The annual visit volume is approximately 140,000 outpatient visits per year. The Director of Health Information Systems oversees a staff of five employees.

  • 30 Mar 2017 11:00 AM | Anonymous

    Mass HIway, the state-sponsored Health Information Exchange (HIE) for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is seeking an Executive Director (Job ID: 16000815).

    The Mass HIway is a robust public HIE option, and currently has two primary functions: (1) support of secure transmission of information via Direct Messaging, and (2) HIway-sponsored population health services, which include the existing Relationship Listing Service, and the proposed Event Notification Service.

    The Mass HIway Executive Director will oversee and lead the Mass HIway, and will be responsible for setting and implementing its strategic goals and objectives, as set forth in MGL Chapter 118I, and by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS), and under advisory guidance of the Health Information Technology Council. The Mass HIway Executive Director will report directly to the Undersecretary of EOHHS and partner closely with Mass Health and EOHHS IT.

    Duties and Responsibilities (general summary, not all inclusive):

    • Oversee all policy, business, and operational aspects of the Mass HIway, including the setting and implementation of strategic policy and technical goals, engagement with EOHHS and state executive leadership, and engagement with external stakeholders in other state agencies and in the public.
    • Lead strategic planning for the Mass HIway, which includes refining the core goals and objectives of the Mass HIway, and establishing/ executing short and long-term agendas and business plans to meet these goals and objectives.
    • Oversee all EOHHS legislative, regulatory, and sub-regulatory affairs related to the Mass HIway.
    • Oversee the design, implementation, and maintenance of new components of the Mass HIway by partnering with Mass Health and EOHHS IT.
    • Conceptualize and develop the policy requirements and lead the cross functional team to implement a statewide Event Notification Service (ENS) and a centralized opt-out mechanism for the Mass HIway.
    • Represent the Mass HIway at local and national conferences/meetings in order to:  Conduct general outreach and education about the role and services that the HIway provides; to Help keep EOHHS and the HIway team informed about recent developments in health information technology (e.g., MACRA, Meaningful Use) that impact the HIway.; and to Help develop knowledge and contacts that may assist the HIway in providing additional services to promote the goals of the HIway.
    • Lead engagement with key stakeholders, including the HIT Council, Advisory Groups to the HIT Council, and advocacy groups in the Commonwealth.
    • Perform other duties as required.

    Preferred Qualifications:

    • Previous senior leadership experience within an organization related to health, health policy and/or health information technology.
    • Master’s or other advanced degree in Health Care or Business Administration, Public Health, or a health policy related field.
    • 5+ years of related experience in health policy, and/or health information technology.
    • Proficient Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel skills.
    • Communication and presentation skills, both oral and written, to interact with leadership, staff, providers and other stakeholders.

    To find out more and apply for this position, visit the MassCareers site.

    (Job ID: 16000815).

  • 20 Mar 2017 10:53 AM | Anonymous

    Retrieved from Becker's Health IT and CIO Review  
    Written by Jessica Kim Cohen | March 16, 2017 

    David Reis, CIO of Burlington, Mass.-based Lahey Health, has seen digital tools transform three separate industries — including healthcare.

    He started his career in IT in the 1990s and spent about 10 years working in retail banking. Mr. Reis noticed how the internet revamped retail banking into a more consumer-driven industry, where clients came to expect on-demand service.

    "It was really neat, because that was the beginning of the 'dot com' era," Mr. Reis says. "When I started in retail banking, we didn't have internet banking. When I left, over 99 percent of all transactions done at our institution were done through it."

    In the late 2000s, he transitioned into higher education — around the same time online education entered mainstream conversation. "I saw the same thing play out in higher ed that had played out in retail banking," he explains.

    For the last decade, Mr. Reis has worked in healthcare, where he has seen a similar trend.

    "I'm seeing the exact same thing play out, now for a third time, in a third different industry," he says. "We're moving from the traditional delivery of healthcare on paper records in the four walls of the doctor's office, to an environment where care is requested and delivered in more digital ways."

    Mr. Reis recently spoke with Becker's Hospital Review about how data analytics and platform technology will continue to transform patient care.

    Note: Responses have been lightly edited for length and clarity.

    Question: In the 10 years you've worked as a healthcare CIO, how has the IT landscape changed?

    David Reis: At the macro level, we now capture a lot of electronic data about patients, and we use a lot of electronic data about patients to make care decisions. I think that is something that's very, very different today than it was 10 years ago. Now, when we think about a traditional encounter, there's likely some kind of electronic device with the provider, and with the patient. As a provider talks about the concerns of the patient, they can pull up test results and images, electronically, in real-time.

    We're also seeing the ability to deliver care outside the four walls of the hospital, moving to when it's convenient for the patient or when the patient needs it. As an example, within the last year, we've seen that Lahey Health has exchanged patient information in 49 of the 50 states. That means our patient population has gotten care in 49 of the 50 states, and that's all enabled by technology and connected platforms. We're now starting to see the value of these platforms that integrate data, so we can use our data to make real-time decisions.

    Q: In the past, you've written about how platform technologies can help healthcare organizations integrate data from disparate data sources. Can you speak to that?

    DR: That's become a key focus for us at Lahey Health — making sure we don't just have silos of data spread across various systems. We want to make patient data as widely available as possible, to the right care teams and treatment teams. Platform technologies help us make that patient data easier to access, and, at the same time, increase security of access. The more we digitize patient information, the more we have to be concerned about securing it.

    Q: Looking into the rest of 2017, what are some of your main goals for Lahey Health?

    DR: Our big goal for 2017 is to drive the adoption of our secure text messaging product throughout the inpatient environment, because we think it makes it easier to deliver more efficient care. It reduces the time it takes for two members of a care team to talk about a patient.

    There's also a lot of talk in the industry about secure text messaging between members of a treatment team on the inpatient side, and members of the care team on the outpatient side.

    Within our large healthcare organization, we see how it can be difficult to know who to text about what. We have been able to integrate our patient census with AirStrip's secure text messaging platform, in a way that allows any member of a patient's treatment team to use the AirStrip app to go into their patient list, see other members of their care team and then send a text message, in context, about that patient. That's very different than the traditional forms of text messaging.

    Lahey Health, across its ambulatory and inpatient environments, also just reached the HIMSS 6 EHR adoption level. We're very proud of that, because it means we've really digitized the entire patient record. We want to go ahead and achieve the HIMSS 7 designation.

    Q: What are some of your other interests or hobbies, outside of IT?

    DR: I am a rabid college football fan, so I love Penn State football. I'm also a lifelong fan of Formula 1 auto racing, and Ferrari tends to be my favorite Formula 1 team.

    I've increasingly gotten very interested in digital photography with mirrorless cameras, too. I tend to gravitate toward landscape photography, and more specifically around vegetation — flowers, trees, broader landscapes.

    © Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2017. 

  • 16 Mar 2017 9:28 AM | Anonymous

    Retrieved from Yahoo Finance, February 16, 2017 

    Harvard Pilgrim Health Care now offers physicians Data Diagnostics®, a point-of-care health analytics technology from Quest Diagnostics and Inovalon that is designed to help close costly gaps in care and  improve health outcomes.

    Accessible through a physician’s existing electronic health record (EHR), Data Diagnostics produces patient-specific reports, often in seconds, that help inform clinical decisions, diagnostic coding and other actions that affect quality of care and reimbursement. Physicians can order these reports in real time through their EHR for eligible Harvard Pilgrim patients in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine. No new technology, and minimal training, is required to order reports for patients.

     Harvard Pilgrim is committed to providing tools that support physician’s access to relevant data within the physicians current workflow. Data Diagnostics gives physicians the ability to order and access reports in real time in their existing workflow. The reports employ the EHR’s existing data on the patient as well as patient-specific information from Quest’s 20 billion lab test results and Inovalon’s 139 million unique patients within their MORE2 Registry clinical datasets.

     “One of Harvard Pilgrim’s goals is to empower our physicians to succeed under value-based care and innovative risk-sharing models,” said Gaurish Chandrashekhar, Director of Revenue Management, Harvard Pilgrim. “We believe Data Diagnostics may help enable this transition by supporting accurate clinical documentation, which is vital to risk accuracy and appropriate reimbursement, as well as improved quality. We expect this tool will strengthen our relationships with physicians while simultaneously improving provider-patient interactions, which is a win-win scenario.”

     Proper coding of a patient’s care supports high quality care as well as reimbursement under value-based care models that tie compensation to quality and outcomes rather than individual medical services.

     “The shift from volume to value is all about providing better care,” said David Freeman, general manager, information ventures, Quest Diagnostics. “Harvard Pilgrim has a track record of innovation in health care, and recognizes that good care and cost efficiency often go hand in hand. We look forward to providing Data Diagnostics and its actionable insights to Harvard Pilgrim-serving physicians to aid the delivery of quality care for patients.”

    Read the full Press release here. 

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