1. Oracle’s acquisition of Cerner was the topic of three of the top five blog posts of 2022
Five of HFMA’s Healthcare News of Note blogs grabbed the most reader attention in 2022 based on the number of clicks on each lead story, with three of the top five detailing Oracle’s acquisition of Cerner. The other topics that drew especially strong interest from healthcare finance professionals were the low number of hospitals that received a top ranking for social responsibility and how hospital and health system staffing shortages were linked to patient safety.
Not only was the Aug. 26 Healthcare News of Note blog post, “Oracle-Cerner deal has the potential to transform healthcare,” the most popular of 2022, but two additional blogs in the top five were about the acquisition, taking the honors of second and fourth most-read posts.
It is no wonder the topic grabbed healthcare finance professionals’ attention. The pairing of Oracle, a computer technology corporation, with Cerner, a leading health information technology company, was a big deal in every sense.
“Working together, Cerner and Oracle have the capacity to transform healthcare delivery by providing medical professionals with better information — enabling them to make better treatment decisions resulting in better patient outcomes,” said Larry Ellison, Oracle’s chairman and chief technology officer, in a Dec. 20, 2021, news release.
The second-most read blog post, “Oracle’s $28.3 billion Cerner deal faces anti-competition scrutiny, and a pension fund sues Cerner for access to files related to the possible merger,” was published March 1.
The deal was finalized on June 8, and that was the main topic of a June 9 blog post, “Oracle’s $28.3B acquisition of Cerner is now final,” which was the fourth most popular of the year.
2. A report on the Lown Institute’s ‘most socially responsible’ hospitals ranked No. 3
The third most popular Healthcare News of Note blog post, “Only 66 hospitals earn top marks for social responsibility,” piqued the interest of readers who were curious to see whether their organizations were listed and how other hospitals and health systems ranked.
Published July 18, the entry stated: “Only 66, or just under 2%, of 3,606 U.S. hospitals earned the distinction of ‘most socially responsible,’ according to findings from the 2022 Lown Institute Hospitals Index for Social Responsibility.”
Social responsibility is on the radar of many healthcare finance professionals these days, for several reasons, including that credit rating agencies are showing interest in ESG scores.
In fact, in the article, “Bringing ESG principles to healthcare,” in the winter 2022-23 issue of hfm magazine, Kevin Holloran, senior director and sector leader of the Not-for-Profit Healthcare Group at Fitch Ratings, is quoted saying: “The Securities and Exchange Commission in recent years has made ESG a focal point of its oversight of publicly traded companies, and that emphasis is trickling down to the not-for-profit healthcare space.”
3. A story on ECRI’s top issues that affect patient safety ranked No. 5
The March 28 blog post, “Staffing shortages in hospitals and healthcare settings are ‘actively jeopardizing’ patient safety, says ECRI,” was the fifth most popular Healthcare News of Note entry for the year.
Everyone in healthcare understands the significance of patient safety. In fact, ‘safety of care’ is one of five quality measures CMS uses to assess hospitals in its star ratings (along with mortality, readmissions, patient experience and timeliness and effectiveness of care). In addition, many stakeholders have felt the strain of staffing shortages in 2022.
The authors of the ECRI report wrote, “ECRI researchers say inadequate staffing is actively jeopardizing patient safety. Due to staffing shortages, many patients are waiting longer for care, even in life-threatening emergencies, or simply being turned away.”
HFMA bonus content
Listen to the latest Voices in Healthcare Finance podcast, “HFMA staff discuss the biggest healthcare stories of the year,” including the top Healthcare News of Note blog posts. The podcast is hosted by Erika Grotto, HFMA senior editor.