The healthcare industry is evolving rapidly thanks to years of investment in foundational technologies and processes, particularly related to electronic health records and diagnostic platforms. In many health care systems, back-office functions have had to give up investment to fund the patient-facing solutions, and it can be easy to get complacent and rely on legacy procedures indefinitely. Aware of this risk, Novant Health has been proactive in updating our back-office processes and data capabilities so that our physician partners can make better and informed decisions at a rapid pace. New advancements in computing and the proliferation of data sources have allowed us to boost efficiency in automation. As a result, clinicians, team members and end-users feel empowered to swiftly engage in procuring the required products and services at every level to quickly achieve their desired outcomes. At Novant Health, we had to develop better ways to access healthcare procurement systems and give providers what they need to support patients and continue tracking expenses.
In 2012, we started the Clinical Variation Reduction program with the goal to standardize recognized best procedures through identifying opportunities to decrease clinical variation across Novant Health’s facilities. During this program, we found new ways to look at resource utilization and costs of care. The focus and intent of the program was to provide safe and effective quality care in a cost-effective manner. In gaining enhanced visibility to variations in costs and quality, we created positive change with our vendor community and physician partners. We did this with better data and a manual process to share information in a progressive and transparent way. This old manual process was very time-consuming, but it taught us a lot in terms of where to find the data and how to translate it in a way that allows us to gain trust with all partners. Transparency and data integrity are the cornerstones of our program. With our digital product solution team, we are now on a fast journey of automation with a goal of employing real-time decision making tools that will lead us into advanced automation, and eventually on to automation driven by artificial intelligence (AI).
Facilitate with Influence
Even with cleaner data, the ability to translate with visualization requires the presence of a capable workforce. With our new automation of data collection processes, we can push our team towards AI-based solutions that focus on patient outcomes, revenues and pre-procedure costing models. One area to overcome is the four to six week lag time on the supply expense analytics related to DRG or CPT codes. We use that data to facilitate conversations and influence future behavior within our provider community.