Navigant survey conducted by HFMA also suggests hospital and health
system executives expect more moderate IT investments to improve revenue
CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 28, 2018--
Providers continue to focus on technology to drive revenue cycle
improvements but remain challenged with optimizing electronic health
record (EHR) functionality and addressing consumer self-pay, a Navigant
(NYSE: NCI) analysis based on a survey conducted by Healthcare
Financial Management Association (HFMA) suggests.
Revenue cycle IT budgets, EHR trends
According to the survey of 107 hospital and health system chief
financial officers and revenue cycle executives, 68% said their revenue
cycle technology budgets will increase over the next year, down
from 74% last year.
Results also show that, compared to last year:
39% fewer executives project a budget increase of 5% or more
53% more executives predict no change to their budgets
This slowing of IT spending does not mean providers are satisfied with
their current EHR functionality.
Fifty-six percent of executives said their organizations can’t keep up
with EHR upgrades or underuse available EHR functions, up from 51% last
Moreover, 56% of executives suggested EHR adoption challenges have been
equal to or outweighed benefits specific to their organization’s revenue
cycle performance. Both hospital-based executives and those from smaller
hospitals cited more challenges than benefits, compared to health system
and larger hospital executives. This is likely due to greater capacity
and scale in health system and larger hospital IT departments.
“Hospitals and health systems have invested a significant amount of time
and money into their EHRs, but the technology’s complexity is preventing
them from realizing an immediate return on their investments,” said
Timothy Kinney, managing director at Navigant. “When optimized
correctly, a good portion of the ROI can come from EHR-related revenue
cycle process improvements.”
Consumer self-pay trends
While providers appear to be better prepared to address consumer
self-pay, the area continues to be an issue.
Eighty-one percent of executives believe the increase in consumer
responsibility for costs will continue to affect their organizations,
down from 92% last year. Among them, 22% think that impact will be
significant, compared to 40% last year. Executives from health systems
and larger hospitals believe their organizations will be more heavily
impacted by consumer self-pay.
“The impact of consumer self-pay on providers will only increase with
the popularity of high-deductible health plans and negative changes to
the economy,” said Navigant Managing Director James McHugh. “Providers
must take advantage of opportunities to more holistically educate
patients on out-of-pocket costs, predict their propensity to pay as
early as possible, and secure alternative payers or financing when
Revenue cycle IT trends
When asked which revenue cycle capability their organization is most
focused on for improvement over the next year, most executives (76%)
once again selected technology-related capabilities. Revenue integrity
continues to be the top area of focus among them, cited by 24% of
executives who noted such revenue integrity program benefits as reduced
compliance risks, and increased revenue capture and net collection.
Survey results also show that, compared to last year, EHR optimization
as an improvement priority rose from 15% to 21%, while physician
documentation fell from 18% to 12%.
View full survey results at www.navigant.com/RCMInsights.
segment is comprised of consultants, former provider administrators,
clinicians, and other experts with decades of strategy,
operational/clinical consulting, managed services, revenue cycle
management, and outsourcing experience. Professionals collaborate with
hospitals and health systems, physician enterprises, payers, government,
and life sciences entities, providing strategic, performance
improvement, and business process management solutions that help them
meet quality and financial goals.
Navigant Consulting, Inc. (NYSE: NCI) is a specialized, global
professional services firm that helps clients take control of their
future. Navigant’s professionals apply deep industry knowledge,
substantive technical expertise, and an enterprising approach to help
clients build, manage, and/or protect their business interests. With a
focus on markets and clients facing transformational change and
significant regulatory or legal pressures, the firm primarily serves
clients in the healthcare, energy, and financial services industries.
Across a range of advisory, consulting, outsourcing, and
technology/analytics services, Navigant’s practitioners bring sharp
insight that pinpoints opportunities and delivers powerful results. More
information about Navigant can be found at navigant.com.
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