Productivity and Process Improvement

Hospitals reached steadier ground financially as they moved into 2024

Hospitals came into 2024 with some financial momentum, even as expenses continued to rise and pivotal decisions loomed. The year-to-date median hospital operating margin reached 2.3% in December, the high mark for 2023 and the 10th consecutive month in which margins were positive, according to monthly data from Syntellis Performance Solutions, part of Strata Decision…

Nick Hut February 12, 2024

A ‘magic equation’ to unlock OR revenue

This whitepaper offers healthcare leaders a roadmap to identify operating room (OR) inefficiencies and address them using a "magic equation" of artificial intelligence, automation and change management.

HFMA January 31, 2024

Recent updates and emerging best practices for ACOs in the Medicare Shared Savings Program

Going into the 12th year since it brought accountable care into the healthcare lexicon, the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) continues to evolve, with CMS making changes and participants fine-tuning best practices. Starting with 220 accountable care organizations (ACOs) in 2012-13, the MSSP grew to 561 in 2018. However, the number has been below 500…

Nick Hut January 9, 2024

2024 outlook: Hospitals can expect a steadier year financially, but key questions loom

Although the past year brought more stability for the not-for-profit hospital sector, analysts foresee 2024 as a pivotal period in determining the viability of individual organizations. Fitch Ratings continues to describe the sector’s outlook as “Deteriorating.” In a year-end report, the credit-rating agency said downgrades of hospitals and health systems in 2023 had outpaced upgrades…

Nick Hut December 22, 2023

HFMA strategy session highlights challenges and opportunities for healthcare finance leaders: payer relations, supply costs, AI and more

The legacy healthcare provider’s position in the industry could grow tenuous if leaders don’t respond boldly and strategically to ongoing trends, according to insights recently presented to HFMA leaders. “We’re at a crossroads right now,” Ashraf Shehata, principal and U.S. national sector leader for healthcare and life sciences with KPMG, said in November during a…

Nick Hut December 19, 2023

Stemming the outpatient profit squeeze with a revenue cycle workflow gap analysis

Hospital and health system outpatient, outreach and ancillary services are often confined to EHR systems to manage their billing. Designed for bigger-ticket, lower-volume claims, these systems lack specific front-end intelligence, system connectivity, and automation necessary to efficiently manage these departments’ unique billing need. Too often, the result is an unnecessarily high number of submission errors,…

HFMA September 6, 2023

Data indicate hospital operational logjams haven’t ceased after the public health emergency (updated)

Note: The fourth section of this article has been updated with news of proposed mandatory staffing ratios for long-term care facilities. Some of the problems that strained hospital operations during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic have eased, but not enough to mark a true industrywide recovery, a recently released report suggests. Notably, the process…

Nick Hut August 24, 2023

5 ways end-to-end RCM improves the employee experience

In today’s healthcare landscape, it can be very difficult to find and retain top talent. The key? Improve the employee experience. See the 5 ways end-to-end RCM can enhance your team’s day-to-day, creating a superior work environment that speaks for itself. Inside this guide, you’ll learn how to improve the employee experience by enabling more…

HFMA August 18, 2023

Annual Conference: Houston Methodist uses AI in virtual models for critical care, patient observation and more

Artificial intelligence (AI) is driving innovation in clinical operations at the Houston Methodist hospital system, as explained during a presentation this week at HFMA’s Annual Conference. Among other virtual-care programs developed by the organization’s innovation center, Houston Methodist has incorporated a virtual ICU and virtual observation in the inpatient setting. Both programs use AI to…

Nick Hut June 30, 2023

Annual Conference: How Mayo Clinic establishes the mindset and processes that foster innovation

Hospitals and health systems must adapt their practices using an innovator’s mindset to keep up with the change sweeping the industry, according to a presentation this week at HFMA’s Annual Conference. “Innovation, at this point in our industry’s landscape, is pretty critical,” said Praveen Mekala, enterprise division chair with Mayo Clinic, referring to the problems…

Nick Hut June 29, 2023
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