ClickCare Café

Why Simpler (and Cheaper) Solutions Are Care Coordination Winners

Posted by Lawrence Kerr on Fri, Mar 18, 2016 @ 07:30 AM



Not long ago, an institution told us that they couldn't buy iClickCare, not because it doesn't work the way they want it to, but because it's not expensive enough.

This is a mindset that makes a lot of sense when hospitals are being paid according to the volume of service provided. We need more visits, more tests, more equipment, more hardware, and more people in beds.

But that mindset is beginning to outlive its usefulness, as the pay for service system shifts -- significantly and likely permanently -- to a pay for performance system. 

Not everything is reimbursement driven, although that is an easy target to complain about. We believe that is also, probably in greater part, culture driven and even more significantly, effort driven. It is just too hard to communicate, and without communication, there is no team. It is this exact insight, that drives ClickCare to make collaboration and communication easy, delightful and efficient. We have done so in the spirit of doing the right thing. The excitement just now is that reimbursement is catching up to us, witness, the 2015-2016 New York State Telemedicine Law.

A recent article in the Harvard Business Review puts forth the insight that there is opportunity to be had in the low-profile, lower-cost interventions that medicine has ignored for so long. They look at a small-teams model that has been having huge success, despite being overlooked for years. The solution is simple: healthcare collaboration among providers across the continuum of care. This team is able to provide time, trust, education, understanding the patient's full life, and getting the patient on board with their own treatment.

As Mr. Trimble emphasizes, "these possibilities often go unmined, because of the mindset that true innovation is necessarily 'big' [read: expensive] and disruptive." He cites better coordination of care and more careful medical decision making as examples of these kinds of changes.

We're passionate about iClickCare because it is an intervention that that is precisely an example of this kind of intervention. It is inexpensive and doesn't require huge investments of time, energy, or technology to implement. It facilitates better care coordination. It supports better medical decision making. And in a pay for performance model, it can be extremely high return on investment, from the first month of use.

So this article has us asking -- what new relationships among providers can support the results we want to see in medicine? What simple solutions are we overlooking? And what colleagues are on this journey with us, who would never say that a product is too simple or too inexpensive, if it works.

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Tags: telemedicine, care coordination, healthcare collaboration

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