Healthcare financial management professionals across the country are tackling head-on some of the industry’s most pressing challenges. Tammie L. Galindez, HFMA National Board Director and Conifer Health Regional Vice President of Value-Based Care, shares her perspective and identifies key trends that are impacting leaders’ decision-making.
“Out of the Box” isn’t just a conference theme – it’s a key action item
The healthcare industry is evolving and the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) is working diligently and deliberately to evolve alongside it. In previous years, one would attend the organization’s Annual National Institute (ANI) to convene with revenue cycle professionals, but now they can convene with physicians and payers alike – all collaboratively working to drive down the cost of care and increase access while improving outcomes. Several keynote presentations spoke about moving beyond the status quo: Finding the Edge of Disruption, The Future of Medicine is in Your Hands, and The Healthcare Innovation Panel. The sessions – almost in entirety – offered ideas to do things “better” and/or “differently.” HFMA National Chair Mary Mirabelli’s theme of “Thrive” was a perfect complement to this message and encouraged us all to choose to grow, prosper and succeed as we embark upon unchartered territory.
Physician alignment, engagement and compensation remain top of mind
More than 249,000 physicians are now employed by a hospital organization1. Financial management professionals continue to struggle with how to engage physicians both in terms of strategy as well as compensation. In addition, dare we insinuate that MACRA might present the ideal physician alignment opportunity to partner with area physicians? Noticeable at ANI was the presence of physician leadership presenting and sharing knowledge from the physician perspective.
Consumerism is the name of the game
Financial management professionals are actively working to keep pace with the demand of patients who, increasingly so, are looking more like consumers. Although patient communication and patient portals are not new concepts, providers are now viewing these initiatives through different lenses – those of consumers who want to be empowered. In addition, Dr. Eric Topol’s keynote presentation provided incredible visibility into technology – not necessarily new, but certainly new to most attendees in the room – that will afford patients more control and place them squarely in the center of financial and care decisions. Similar to the consumer marketplace, healthcare needs to move quickly and respond to the demand for increased data security.
Though there are new expectations emerging in our industry, whether set forth through government mandates or industry trends, the overarching mindset throughout the industry is one of readiness and optimism. Leaders are prepared to embrace and adopt new models of operation. In fact, they already are.
- Source: Statement of the American Hospital Association before the Finance Committee of the U.S. Senate, July 13, 2016.