Indeed, we’ve found that creativity is the best way to generate customer value, and I am proud to announce that Frost & Sullivan reinforced that idea in its recent whitepaper describing its choice for McKesson as company of the year. In the whitepaper, “Amplifying the Value of Medical Imaging Services to the Enterprise through Efficient Workflow Solutions,” Frost & Sullivan makes the point that this notion is circular: creativity brings about customer value excellence, and customer value excellence reinforces the spirit of creativity.
The more intricate the system, the more important it is to be able to identify patterns. Take radiology coding—already complex, it’s about to get more so with the ICD-10 changeover. But when you can sort through data to see the underlying patterns, it’s significantly easier to promote efficiency that may lead to accurate reimbursement.
The first step is moving communication between coders and radiologists away from manual systems like email and fax. With an automated system, such as a QICS, coders query physicians about tests or procedures by placing a notation in the system that immediately appears on the correct physician’s work list.
Leaders of healthcare organizations are continually being challenged to do more with less while proving that improved efficiency and better patient health stem from their decisions. At McKesson, we work closely with healthcare executives and hear about the challenges they face. This allows us to create enterprise medical imaging solutions that can help them address their healthcare systems’ needs.
Whether healthcare systems have outdated PACS that operate in silos, need strategies to maximize their EHR investment or are trying to improve staff efficiency, most decision makers face overlapping issues. The most common considerations when choosing a new enterprise medical imaging system include return on investment (ROI), performance, patient care and balancing quality and cost.
This post will be of particular interest if you are an imaging professional at a US hospital or imaging center that performs CT scans on Medicare or Medicaid patients – even more so if you manage the equipment budget.
Having addressed all the new state regulations and Joint Commission recommendations on CT radiation exposure tracking and minimization, you may think that you are on top of things. But there is another impending item by the name of NEMA-XR-29-2013 that you may need to factor into your plans.
Depending on an institution’s exact situation, NEMA-XR-29-2013 could either be a pebble or a boulder, financially speaking.
Interview with Dr. Robyn Cairns, pediatric radiologist at British Columbia’s Children’s Hospital and vice chair of medical informatics for the Department of Radiology at University of British Columbia
With the rapid expansion of radiology comes a corresponding need for advances in radiology peer review. Dr. Robyn Cairns, pediatric radiologist at BC Children’s Hospital in British Columbia and vice chair of medical informatics for the Department of Radiology, University of British Columbia, puts it this way, “The busy pace of a radiology practice demands an efficient solution to integrate peer review into radiologist workflow.”
After a radiology technician in Georgia falsified more than 1,000 radiology results, it was found that 10 of the test results had actually been positive and two of the patients died. The technologist was fined and sentenced to six months in a detention center, while the healthcare facility where she worked faced multiple lawsuits.
No director of radiology wants to think that one of his or her employees could be capable of such a transgression, but falsified radiology records can lead to a healthcare organization’s loss of reputation, fines or penalties, and perhaps for affected patients, even loss of life.
What is Image Results Anyway?
“Image Results” is the name of a Meaningful Use 2 menu objective. So you could conceivably just opt out of doing it if you already have six of the other menu objectives well covered. But since most hospitals will find it to be a quick win and it is so valuable to quality patient care, it would be a shame not to address it. Also, it is probably going to be core in MU3, so why put it off?
[Note: Read part 1 of this series here]
A Crash Course on Diagnostic Imaging Departments for the MU Team
If you already work in the radiology or cardiology department, you can skip this section and advance to the next one.
If you are a member of the Meaningful Use implementation team at your hospital, you are likely trying to figure out a lot of unfamiliar jargon coming from those nice folks in your imaging departments. Here is what you need to know to communicate with them on this topic.
This article will interest you if you live in the United States and are:
- A radiology or cardiology professional who has been asked a bunch of questions filled with unfamiliar acronyms and words like “Image Results,” “170.314(a)(12),” and “MU2” by your hospital’s Meaningful Use team, or you are
- On your hospital’s Meaningful Use team who just received blank stares when you asked your radiology department team to assist you with adding the “Image Results” to the objectives you can achieve.
When the new ICD-10 system is implemented on October 1, 2015, which is the most recent date set for its onset, many changes will accompany the transition, including a dramatic increase in the number of codes. The increase will be helpful to practitioners, including those in radiology, because it allows them to improve the specificity they use when documenting why a patient was seen and what care was given.