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Group purchasing options create significant savings

December 11th, 2014

by Kevin L. Shrake

Why don't we shop for everything that we need in our personal lives in one store?

The answers are obvious. No one store has everything that we need, nor can they develop the business relationships with every supplier that results in the best financial deal for all goods or services. Options create cost savings in our personal lives and we should apply that principle to our purchasing procedures in the organizations we manage.

I have had the opportunity to work directly with every major group purchasing organization (GPO) in healthcare during the course of my career. They all provide valuable services, but each one also comes with their individual strengths and weaknesses. Taking advantage of the basic principle of using the power of bulk purchasing to lower costs is the essence of GPOs. Structuring your GPO relationships in a manner that best covers all of your needs is what separates top performers from their competitors.

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Congratulations to the 2014 Fierce Innovation Awards: Healthcare Edition honorees

December 11th, 2014

by Dan Bowman

Jvion's RevEgis, M2Sys Technology's RightPatient and eHealth Technologies' eHealth Connect Image Exchange each earned "Best-In-Show" accolades for FierceMarkets' second annual Fierce Innovation Awards: Healthcare Edition, announced Dec. 3.

The Fierce Innovation Awards is a CIO-reviewed awards program from the publishers of FierceHealthIT, FierceHealthcare and FierceMobileHealthcare. Eight hospital CIOs served as judges, evaluating solutions based on quality of care and patient outcomes, care efficiency, financial impact, market validation, and overall fierceness and innovation.

RevEgis was named "Fiercest Cost-Saving Solution," while RightPatient was deemed "Fiercest Engagement Solution" and eHealth Connect was honored as "Fiercest New Product/Service." The winners were announced during a live webcast and are featured in FierceHealthIT's "Innovation Report."

>> See the full list of award winners at FierceHealthIT

For independent hospitals, self examination is critical to surviving healthcare market

December 4th, 2014

by Mina Ubbing

In last month's blog post I discussed how independent hospitals can survive in the changing healthcare environment. Here are some more tips for making your independent hospital the best it can be.

Know your strategic value

As you lay groundwork for the future, it's important to know your strategic value. Certainly your balance sheet tells you your net worth, but there's more to the story. Do you really know what your community--not just your patients--think about your hospital and comparatively about other providers in your regions? How much pride, ownership and confidence does your community have in your hospital's capabilities and care? Are residents aware of the quality you provide and how your performance metrics compare to other hospitals and the industry as a whole?

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Healthcare marketing: Capitalize on power of mutual attraction

December 4th, 2014

by Andrea J. Simon

Undeniably, there's a tectonic shift occurring in healthcare marketing today. With large deductibles and the public's growing mistrust of physicians' approach to care, consumers shop and select care options in ways that were unheard of just a few years ago.

Like it or not, the time is now for healthcare institutions to realize that the old outbound way of pushing messages out to consumers is as outdated as the eight-track tape. As Bob Dylan famously sang: "The times they are a-changin'."

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Doctors must communicate bad news with compassion

December 4th, 2014

by Sherri Loeb

As I re-read Tom Dahlborg's Hospital Impact blog post from 2010 about this "touchy feely time of the year" and if gratitude makes a difference in someone's life, I can't help but reflect on the way physicians communicate information to patients.

After numerous interactions with the healthcare system, the most recent being this week, it truly makes me wonder why doctors can't communicate news in a more patient-centered way. While I understand not all news is good--many times it is downright awful--the way doctors deliver it can make the difference between patients giving up at the onset, or feeling they can fight for their life.

The first example that comes to my mind is when my daughter was about 14 years old. She was a distance runner in high school and started complaining of increasingly severe back pain. Nothing seemed to relieve it.

We saw an orthopedist who did an x-ray, which revealed nothing. He said he felt it was a stress fracture and suggested a bone scan. I questioned the physician to make sure he wasn't looking for something more ominous like a tumor. He stated emphatically no. My daughter got the bone scan and we went back about a week later for the results. He was very matter of fact when he said the bone scan showed something questionable. It may be a tumor, but no big deal we can get an MRI and a ct guided biopsy. We were shocked.

=> Read more!

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