10 HIT strategies to become a preferred provider

Long-term post-acute care (LTPAC) is being involved more and more in HITECH Meaningful Use and other initiatives. Although we still cannot plan on incentive monies we will be involved because interconnectivity and transitions of care are important to LTPAC providers as it is good for patient coordination of care. Remember, the end objective is an integrated, dynamic, longitudinal, person-centric electronic healthcare record (EHR).

LTPAC providers and vendors should consider providing more direct action plans as they plan for the future. Of course these plans have to fit your facility culture and the culture of the community you serve so my comments are somewhat generic. Here are 10 strategic stages you could take to become a preferred provider in tomorrow’s world.

  1. Draft health information technology (HIT) clinical strategic plan
  2. Clinical workflow process analysis
  3. Update HIT clinical strategic plan
  4. HIT infrastructure due diligence
  5. HIT clinical design
  6. Implementation and training
  7. Partnerships and risk management
  8. Person-centric longitudinal care
  9. Algorithms and alerts
  10. Preferred LTPAC provider in your care community

Stages 1-3 are very important, especially in the evolving healthcare environment. Stage 1 is a draft plan with the most valuable outcome being the vision and mission statement. You have to know what you want to look like in, say, 2016 and the role your facility(s) will play in your community of care. This would also include an analysis of all the other LTPAC competitive providers and the geographical HIT strategies (as an example: HIEs and Beacon Communities). Also within this draft plan should be an analysis of your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT).

Stage 2 looks at your current clinical workflow processes and analyzes what will have to change to achieve your vision and how you can be a higher quality of care providers taking into consideration the other LTPAC providers in the area.

Stage 3 updates your HIT clinical strategic plan. Remember this is a plan that harmonizes your clinical vision and HIT and will give you insight into what IT vendors you will want to look at in Stage 4.

It is difficult to go into depth on each of these stages but if you’d like more information, please let me know. I will cover the other stages in future blogs, but right now you should get your team together and write the draft plan.

Update on the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC)

I would like to remind you about the June 17-19, 2012 LTPAC HIT Summit. You can find out how to register and the agenda by going to the LTPAC HIT Collaborative website (www.ltpachealthit.org). If you attend the summit you will receive current and future LTPAC HIT information to help you in your planning. You will also be able to network with the national and state decisionmakers. The keynote speaker is Judy Murphy, RN, FACMI, FJIMSS, FAAN, Deputy National Coordinator for Programs and Policy.

Last month there was a three-day meeting of the ONC Standards & Interoperability (S&I) Framework workgroups including the LTPAC Longitudinal Coordination of Care (LCC) Initiative. You can find the notes, slides, etc. on the ONC Wiki Site (Wiki.siframework.org) under the S&I 2012 Face to Face (F2F) LCC Meetings. You can join the Wiki and the S&I Framework LCC to become involved in this initiative. One of the charges of the group is to develop a LTPAC “Use Case” establishing interconnectivity between hospitals and LTPAC providers in conjunction with the Transition of Care Initiative group. We also discussed the interconnectivity between the individual patient and LTPAC Providers. This is conjunction with a new Standards Committee Work Group on the Consumer Patient. This is part of the ONC place the “I” in HIT, the “I” being the individual. There are some excellent slide presentations on the Wiki Site.

The ONC proposed rule comments are due on May 7thand the LTPAC HIT Collaborative is gathering comments especially on whether LTPAC providers should be held responsible for standards of transitions of care. The general feeling is that since we were not included in the HITECH Act we cannot be held to the official standards. With that said, it would be illogical not to have the same standards as hospitals and physicians but they should be volunteer standards without the penalties the hospitals and physicians will have after 2015 if they do not adhere to the certified standards. If we do not have common transition of care standards we would have too many individual interfaces, etc.

Today ONC is holding a LTPAC Round Table discussion with 25 LTPAC Thought Leaders as a beginning in writing a LTPAC white paper. This is part of the ONC initiative of determining the role of LTPAC in HITECH Stage 3. I will report on this next month.

Topics: Facility management , Technology & IT