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Valuable Insights for Healthcare’s Biggest Challenges in 2016

MiraMed’s corporate headquarters is located in Jackson, Michigan, which is in the south-central part of the state, about 40 miles west of Ann Arbor. Those familiar with Michigan know that it is called the state of lakes. Some say you cannot drive in a straight line in Michigan for long without hitting a body of water. Just like the thousands of lakes in Michigan, today’s healthcare industry has thousands of challenges that need to be fixed. In 2016, some of the biggest challenges facing healthcare executives are rapidly changing rules and regulations, pricing for services, improving patient satisfaction and the enormous task of securing patient health information.

In this quarter’s issue of The Focus, our authors address these issues and other relevant topics that I hope will resonate with our readers. In this edition, we are pleased to introduce six new contributors. Allison Hart is the Vice President of Marketing for West-Televox in Mobile, Alabama. In her article, Awaken Patients and Encourage Self-Care with Technology-Enabled Outreach, she outlines new strategies for technology-enabled patient engagement that can expand the use of appointment reminder technologies and improve patient satisfaction. The article HIPAA Enforcement Gets Serious—Are you Ready? was written as a collaboration by authors Susan Huntington, James Bowers and Eric Fader, healthcare attorneys with Day Pitney LLP in Hartford, Connecticut. The article discusses the importance of healthcare data security and how the government is vigorously pursuing HIPAA enforcement.

Karin Bierstein, Vice President for Strategic Planning and Practice Affairs at Anesthesia Business Consultants in Jackson, Michigan, has written an interesting piece called Healthcare Price Variation is Alive and Well. It highlights the variation of healthcare pricing between geographic regions and why pricing differs by region, city and even from hospital to hospital. In his article The Anti-Kickback and Sales Force Referral Compensation: A Primer Martin Merritt, a health lawyer and partner at Friedman & Feiger in Dallas, Texas, has contributed an article that outlines the risks physicians take if they remunerate other physicians for patient referrals.

The article The Importance of Sustainability in Talent Management for Corporations was written by Louis Carter, CEO and Founder of the Best Practice Institute in West Palm Beach, Florida. He explains how enterprises today are finding that young leaders are concerned with more than just a paycheck; they want their companies to make a positive impact on society. Finally, new contributor Stuart Covit has written an informative article titled Computer Assisted Coding—An Evolving Tool for Health Information Management. He offers his perspective on the emerging technological innovations of computer assisted coding that are designed to reduce costs and improve accuracy.

Returning contributor Phil Solomon, Vice President of Global Services at MiraMed in Atlanta, Georgia, leads off this edition of The Focus with an article titled MACRA and the Medicare Payment Reform Juggernaut. He reveals how the passage of the Medicare Access and Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) has contributed to changes in healthcare delivery by redesigning Medicare’s payment and delivery methods for physicians.

Our last subject matter expert for this edition is David Johnson, CEO and Founder of 4sight Health based in Chicago, Illinois. He has written an eye-opening article titled Manipulating Demand: Paying Patients for Lower-Cost Care. David shares his insight about the emerging trend of patients seeking non-traditional companies that offer greater pricing transparency and even pay incentives for receiving care at lower-cost treatment centers.

At MiraMed, our goal for publishing The Focus is to deliver timely and pertinent content that offers best practice strategies and stimulates conversations about the state of our healthcare system and how we can improve it. Healthcare providers are facing a trend toward consumerism, driven by more patient financial accountability, as well as improving the health of our population and managing healthcare costs. In the United States, advancing clinical innovation and care delivery is the cornerstone of our healthcare system. To deliver the highest quality in the world, we need to have a financially stable foundation to make our system run. Our goal at MiraMed is to contribute to the financial health of our clients by delivering services that enhance their operations. To accomplish this, we need to stay current with today’s trends and always be on the lookout for innovative strategies to improve revenue cycle performance. To that end, we participate in many industry associations that provide information on cutting-edge trends. The most prominent trade group is the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA). This year HFMA is holding their annual ANI conference in Las Vegas from June 26-29. MiraMed will be in booth 1421, so please come by and say hello. We hope to see you then! 

With best wishes,

Tony Mira
President and CEO

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