Report: Tech vital to survival for post-acute care facilities

Technology will be essential to post-acute care facilities as they deal with changing Medicare reimbursement rates, more Medicaid patients and other newly-covered patients from insurance exchanges, according to a new Black Book report.

"It is going to take a willingness to adapt and commit to using technology to confront the challenges ahead, but post-acute organizations admit they are not prepared. They are still stuck in a volume-based care mindset," Doug Brown, president of Black Book's parent company, Brown-Wilson Group, said in an announcement.

Integrating evidence-based practices through clinical operations can control rising costs, reduce duplications and other inefficiencies and position the business for success, he says.

The latest survey focused on health information exchanges (public and private), quality reporting, health analytics, workflow and care coordination and patient engagement software/systems.

Among the findings:

  • 96 percent of all post-acute providers identified "declining reimbursements" as their most pressing issue of 2014
  • 63 percent of all post-acute providers report currently non-existent or extremely poor use of information systems, technology and patient data exchanges
  • Though 92 percent say data sharing and comprehensive care coordination would improve their organizations' financial health, 90 percent report minimal or underutilized technology across all settings

An audit last year found that more than a third of stays in 2009 at skilled nursing facilities involved care that did not meet Medicare's quality-of-care requirements or that was not administered according to plans.

Meanwhile, a study published in the journal Health Services Research concluded that hospitals with strong ties to SNFs have lower readmission rates and are likely to save money in the process.

To learn more:
- find the announcement

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