Hospital acquisition of physician practices driving demand for integrated technology platforms
- As health systems continue to acquire physician practices, providers are looking for fully integrated, customizable EHRs and practice management and revenue cycle management systems to help them succeed under value-based care. In a new Black Book Market Research survey, 36% of hospital leaders said finding a high-performing integrated EHR, PM and RCM is a top priority.
- Among large hospital systems, 40% said their organizations are budgeting to replace existing patchwork systems with consolidated and integrated ambulatory technologies compatible with their EHRs and RCMs, with a goal of having the new systems in place by the end of 2020.
- In addition, 80% of integrated delivery network executives said aligning hospital and physician IT supports value-based care models, and 89% of hospital execs believe nonintegrated EHRs and PM systems undermine those goals.
EHRs work best when there’s more integration and interoperability, and merging organizations need platforms that work well together, especially as consolidation continues at a rapid pace.
The number of physicians identifying as hospital or medical group employees has climbed from 43.7% in 2012 to 49.1% currently, according to a recent Physicians Foundation survey.
The survey also found high rates of dissatisfaction among hospital-employed physicians. Only 2.7% of respondents felt strongly that hospital employment would enhance quality of care and decrease costs. Respondents also felt hospitals’ interest were not always aligned with physicians’.
Better integrating hospital and practice IT systems could increase satisfaction and lead to better cost and patient outcomes.
“With over fifty percent of US doctors receiving their pay directly or indirectly from a hospital system organization, CFOs and CIOs are seeing the value-based care model potential, reimbursement improvements and resources expenditure savings to be gained by implementing a fully integrated healthcare information technology system," Doug Brown, managing partner of Black Book Research, said in a statement.
Allscripts ranked No. 1 in providing an integrated hospital/ambulatory/physician EHR, PM and RCM solution for integrated health systems and networks. The vendor bested its competitors on 11 of 18 performance indicators. GE Healthcare, Cerner, athenahealth and CPSI also scored high on PM or RCM functionalities, while Greenway, MEDHOST, eClinicalWorks and NextGen scored in the lower half of EHR systems.
Other key findings include:
- Hospital-owned and employed physician practices on integrated HER, PM, RCM platforms average 29% higher receipt of billed charges than independent practices with nonintegrated or unconnected platforms.
- Nine in 10 hospital networks saw an improvement in scheduling satisfaction within two months of adopting integrated PM.
- More than 75% of hospital system clinical administrators want to have standardized treatment plans, assessments and progress notes for enterprise-wide monitoring by the end of 2020.
- More than 90% of respondents seek solutions that allow IDN administrators and clinical team leaders to monitor and analyze performance across the system.
- Nearly all physician practice managers (94%) believe interoperability and coordinated information flows save time and resources for both hospitals and practices.