HMS Blog: 2012 Year In Review

The HMS Blog kicked off in 2012 receiving 12,000 visits from 92 countries and more than 800 followers in 12 short months.

In addition to providing the latest news, information and trends in healthcare, we offered several series on hot industry topics in 2012 including RAC Audits, Care Transitions and Healthcare Social Media.  Our in-depth coverage of the health reform ruling and insight into the impact of the decision were highlighted in our series Understanding Health Reform, while our Post Election Guide to Health Reform provided an overview of provisions already being implemented and its benefits to consumers.

We’re already working on new and exciting material to bring you in 2013!  Don’t miss another minute of it! Follow the HMS blog today!

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Healthcare Trends For 2013

As we say goodbye to 2012, we look forward to all to come in 2013.  Below are some of the top healthcare trends to watch for in the new year:

  • ICD-10 Transition:  October 1, 2014 is not as far away as you think. The shift to ICD-10 will require provider organizations to allocate IT personnel and other management resources towards that goal. Changing to a new classification scheme will be significant, especially for hospitals and payers.
  • Meaningful Use Stage 2: Most providers have a great deal of work to do before they will be ready.  The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) continues to make changes to the final rule, including replacing some standards with more recent versions and changing or exempting some meaningful use measures to provide more flexibility.
  • Patent Expiration: Sales of patented drugs have already suffered due to competition from generics and fewer successful drugs have gotten patent protection which has eroded profit margins.
  • Retail Clinics: The number of U.S. retail clinics is expected to climb to 2,500 in 2013, an increase of about 38%. Some companies like are accelerating this trend by providing health kiosks that offer services that would otherwise be provided in a doctor’s office.
  • Healthcare Exchanges: Though the official deadline for compliance is January 1, 2014, many health insurance exchanges will go live by the end of 2013.
  • Care Coordination & Hospital Readmissions: The impending shift from a fee for services model to performance or value based compensation has highlighted the importance of care coordination. Hospital patients readmitted within 30 days of discharge also faced a financial penalty in 2012.
  • Tablet Use:  Many newer tablets have been sized to fit in lab coat pockets, though it remains to be seen how satisfied users will be. The results are sure to influence the long-term success of these products.

Source: Med City News

HMS Announces Care Transitions Blog Series

Care transitions occur when a patient moves from one health care provider or setting to another as their condition and care needs change during the course of a chronic or acute illness.  For many facing chronic disease, moving seamlessly from one care setting to another is crucial, with the greatest risks coming when the transition of care requires the cooperation of multiple patient providers.

To shed some light on the growing need to establish and implement effective care transitions, HMS Healthcare Management Solutions is launching a Care Transitions Blog Series to explore the fundamentals of care transitions including why it’s important, who it impacts and the components of a successful plan.

Our series kicks-off tomorrow with background information on care transitions and why they are so important.