Greetings from Philadelphia, where we kicked off The 2017 OPEN MINDS Technology and Informatics Institute this morning. It was a day with lots of discussion about the role of technology in improving organizational performance, competitive advantage, tech strategy, and the emerging technologies that may change the health and human service field as we know it.
What did I learn today? The ability to exchange data is critical to managing value-based reimbursement. The future is not in wearables but “invisibles.” There are 165,000 health and medical apps on Google play and in the app store—but only 220 FDA-cleared medical apps. The five largest publicly traded companies in the U.S. are now tech companies (Apple, Alphabet/Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook) and all of them are in the health care market in some form or fashion. The new HL7 Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources will change interoperability—hopefully in some positive ways. Most care managers spend 40% of their time tracking down the data they need to coordinate care. These are elements of an increasingly complex health and human service technology landscape.
Today we also released some of the results from our annual survey of specialty provider organizations about technology adoption, The Tech-Enabled Provider Organization: The 2017 OPEN MINDS Health & Human Services Technology Survey. What were our key findings?
- 84% of organizations with revenue over $25 million and 75% of organizations with revenue below $25 million have an electronic health record (EHR).
- Less than half of organizations of any size have health information exchange (HIE) capabilities.
- Less than a third of organizations use clinical decision support tools or population health management tools.
- Only 20% of organizations are using remote monitoring technologies.
One of the big surprises in the data was the substantial increases in the number of organizations using telehealth technologies. For organizations over $25 million in revenue, 44% are using telehealth technologies—compared to 15% just a year ago. For organizations under $25 million in revenue, those numbers are 33% and 10%, respectively. This change is not surprising given all the developments in telehealth over the past year—VA Proposes Removing State License Restrictions On Telehealth In Its ‘Anywhere To Anywhere’ Program, National Quality Forum Recommends Measuring Telehealth Quality In Four Areas Of Impact, Medicare Telemedicine Spending Rises 28% Between 2015 & 2016, But Is Still Less Than 1% Of Benefit Spending, and Telehealth Is Remaking More Than Therapy.
These tech adoption data illustrate the gap between the potential of future technology—and the reality of current tech adoption. I have no doubt that technology will, eventually, change how health and human services are delivered in some very fundamental ways. (We’ve written about these changes in The Future Is Now, Don’t Implement Tech In A Bubble: Consider Your Strategy, Digital Tech Cutting Edge – Moving From Smartphone App To Wearable, and FDA Selects 9 Organizations For New Digital Health Precertification Pilot Program.) But there is a long road between the current state of technology adoption and that future.
For more on how the adoption of technology and data can impact strategy in a value-based market, join us at The 2017 OPEN MINDS Performance Management Institute on February 16 in Clearwater Beach, Florida, where my colleague Joseph P. Naughton-Travers, Ed.M., Senior Associate, OPEN MINDS will present the session, Metrics-Based Management For Value-Based Reimbursement. And, be sure to follow our coverage of the institute on Twitter @openmindscircle – #OMTechnology.