Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Sequestration and Health Innovation

 

Our government has gone over the cliff and our health system and the accountable care act are about to do the same.

 

   

In a rush to adopt HIT, EMRs many clinics and hospitals have acquired expensive systems for management of clinical records. The incentivization/penalization process hastened the ill-informed to purchase non friendly software. In addition to this deficit HHS mandated meaningful use in order to be able to extract information for the purpose of measuring outcomes.

Dr Eric Topol an outspoken leader in innovation had this to say at the recent HIMSS annual carnival,

                         

Topol kicked off his talk with a bird's eye view of technology today, mentioning that less than a decade ago, everyday technologies like YouTube and Twitter didn't exist. Smartphones — a technology Topol said is expanding faster than television or even electricity once did — are especially bringing on revolutions in health care.

“Despite the existence of a wide range of health technologies, much of health care stays entrenched in old-fashioned thinking, he said.
 

Topol also discussed the mis-direction of technology to reduce costs and increase outcomes. 

He then shared or demonstrated several technologies that have the potential to save patients money, such as apps for eye exams, ear infection checks and sleep studies.


"Why go to a hospital sleep lab when you can just connect your phone and do your own sleep study?" he said. "And who can sleep normally in a hospital?"
In a theme consistent with the overall message of HIMSS13, Topol also spoke on the importance of patient involvement and a move away from physician privilege. I might mention there are already companies that will send a sleep study kit to use at home.

Sequestration will have an effect on this process. The Food and Drug Administration is in the process of measuring their effectiveness and reliability of mobile health applications. The FDA is already  tasked with the  of monitoring and regulating foods, and  drugs. Budgetary constraint will now slow down or halt the process.

The progress of patient advocacy was established by his closing remarks,

In a theme consistent with the overall message of HIMSS13, Topol also spoke on the importance of patient involvement and a move away from physician privilege.


"Nothing about me without me," he said, repeating a patient advocacy battle cry that originated from Valerie Billingham in a session at the Salzburg Global Seminar in 1998 called "Through the Patient's Eyes."


To sum up his point, at the talk's close Topol shared a video clip from the movie Jerry Maguire with his own voice dubbed over that of Tom Cruise: "Show me the data! SHOW ME THE DATA!"

 

LATE BREAKING NEWS !!!!

Sequester's Effect on EHR Incentives

Also during the HIMSS conference, Elizabeth Holland -- director of the HIT Initiatives Group in CMS' Office of E-Health Standards & Services -- said that health care providers participating in the Medicare part of the meaningful use program could see reduced EHR incentive payments as a result of the sequester.

According to Modern Healthcare, hospitals participating only in the Medicare part of the meaningful use program could lose about $37,500 in incentive payments as a result of the 2% cut to Medicare reimbursements under sequestration. Meanwhile, physicians and other eligible professionals participating in the Medicare portion of the meaningful use program could lose up to $360 in incentive payments.

Read more: http://www.ihealthbeat.org/articles/2013/3/6/cms-launches-website-experts-discuss-health-it-at-himss-conference.aspx#ixzz2MnMbiav1

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