As 2013 fades and 2014 begins, healthcare stands on the precipice of transformational change. Through this transformation, ECG has led, and continues to lead, healthcare forward through a prolific and comprehensive thought leadership agenda.
Let’s bid 2013 adieu with a review of the topics and issues that garnered the most attention on the ECG blog during the past year.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA):
The PPACA rollout has begun and is bringing a bit of contention and uncertainty along with it. Regardless of your position on reform or the PPACA, dramatic change is inevitable. Healthcare is undergoing a fundamental shift in incentive structures whereby financial rewards are directly tied to providers’ abilities to demonstrate quality, contain costs, and provide accessible care. Still, this shift in care reimbursement has left many with more questions than answers. The majority of the blog posts from this past year have been written, directly or indirectly, to address many of the questions that have risen in response to healthcare reform and the PPACA.
Physician integration has been a hot-button topic across healthcare and, accordingly, across the ECG blog. Changes in care practice and payment have spurred physicians and provider groups to band together to better coordinate care, improve access, and ensure long-term viability. In light of healthcare’s changing complexion, blog posts from 2013 highlighted the increasing popularity of Professional Services Agreements (PSAs), physician partnership priorities and competencies, clinical coordination priorities, and other critical issues at the forefront of physician integration and alignment strategies.
Hospitals and healthcare organizations are spending considerable time and money in selecting and implementing electronic health record (EHR) systems. However, promises of better care quality, greater efficiency and productivity, and increased care coordination have evaded many providers. Frustrated users and underperforming systems abound, leaving many organizations uncertain about how to proceed, if they should at all, with their expensive IT investments. ECG’s healthcare IT experts contributed blog posts to help providers and organizations navigate the questions and complexities of EHR selection, adoption, implementation, optimization, and replacement – as well as the financial implications associated with EHR utilization.
In times of uncertainty, the organizations that are best positioned to succeed are those that develop clear strategies for their immediate and long-term futures. Popular posts from the past year discussed consolidation, affiliation arrangements, network development, integration, and regionalization strategies that hospitals should be considering in order to position themselves to thrive in a rapidly evolving healthcare climate.
In 2014, these issues and storylines will continue to permeate the healthcare conversation as hospitals and medical groups continue to make sense of the challenges and opportunities presented by healthcare reform. ECG will tackle these complex issues through thought leadership aimed at guiding organizations down a strategic path toward their ideal end state.
Farewell 2013. Here’s to looking forward to a successful year ahead.