That begs the question why should hospitals reinvent

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Unformatted text preview: issues. EHR systems can help with both – and improve healthcare delivery – but only if providers get the implementation right. That begs the question, why should hospitals reinvent the wheel when they can learn valuable lessons from counterparts elsewhere that have already weathered enterprise system adoption? Get the economics of EHR right Over the past decade, the economics of IT have been very restrictive. In today’s economic climate, most projects (including IT) will not get approved if they cannot achieve an ROI of 6–12 months or better. In the US, the dangling of $20 billion in grants for “meaningful adoption” of EHR systems as part of the HITECH Act threatens to skew the equation. But even with the prospects for grant money, care providers cannot afford to ignore one core assumption: EHR projects must succeed on their own merits. Hospitals cannot bank on this money, as competition for awards will be fierce and grants doled out only after care providers have implemented and demonstrated “meaningful use” of EHR systems. Healthcare institutions face similar economic and competitive pressures as other sectors regarding margins and regulatory compliance. Like other sectors, healthcare providers are getting squeezed by the costs of labor and equipment, while industry consolidation increases competitive pressures. Like other regulated sectors ranging from pharmaceuticals and life sciences to automotive, S TRAIGHTTALK I T 33 chemical, and resource extraction companies, healthcare providers are facing mounting compliance burdens. Admittedly, there are some industry-specific differences, such as that the bulk of payments are made by third parties not end customers, and that the pattern of regulation differs in healthcare from sectors such as chemical manufacturing. Nonetheless, the healthcare industry is no different from other sectors in the need to deliver more with fewer resources in an environment that is more competitive than ever. People and process are essential to attaining “meaningful use” of technology Getting the economics right means b...
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This document was uploaded on 12/31/2013.

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