As per recent reliable reports, Affordable Care Act (ACA) has provided for the establishment of Accountable Care Organizations or ACOs in order to decrease healthcare costs. Also, the ACOs have represented a new class of customer for EHR solution providers and medical transcription companies to make efficient use of electronic healthcare systems.
However, some physicians have reported that they are facing issues with the system and their needs are being poorly addressed. When 46 physician-led ACOs were interviewed by a research center to know how their records were being met by medical transcription companies and other EHR vendors, some interesting facts were revealed. Almost 68 percent of these providers said that they were using a third-party ACO solutions provider instead of an EHR vendor. Moreover, while judging the service rankings, it became clear that the ACO solutions providers have comprehensively beaten the EHR vendors in almost all functional areas. This included connectivity as well as care management and reporting. The report stated that “overall, EMR vendors are not ready for prime time, rating on average 6.3 on a 9.0 scale for meeting ACO needs…”
A health IT consultant has also come up with some areas where the EHR vendors and medical transcription companies were lagging as far as the improvement was concerned. First of all, the EHR systems should have the ability to automate the patient outreach and ensure their engagement. This will certainly contribute towards the overall improvement in the care and facilities provided to the patients. Also, effective measures should be taken in clinical analytics and reporting.
The health IT consultant has also stated that data integration and sharing of the information between the providers i.e. medical transcription companies must be well maintained. This also includes sharing of financial and billing data among the different organizations. Finally, it was also reported that the vendors should work more in generating proper worklists.
As stated by Mark Allphin, research director and report author, “This is a major shift from what we are seeing in most healthcare IT areas. What we are seeing in many areas is a migration toward integration. The fact that providers tell us that they will be looking to niche vendors over their EMRs tells us that the ACO market very likely is still up for grabs.”
Hence, it is clear that most providers look up for vendors to get more benefits in the healthcare sector and thus help in the improvement of the healthcare organizations.