Current Challenges to Healthcare IT
Information Technology, which is largely (and rightly so) touted to improve healthcare comes with its own challenges, which has made the progress rather sluggish, and adoption low. Overcoming these challenges or working out alternate solutions is imperative for the better functionality of healthcare technologies and IT systems
Investment in HealthCare IT
Transiting to value-based reimbursement model – Better known as P4P or Pay for Performance, demands healthcare providers to meet certain performance measures for quality and efficiency. Healthcare IT can prove hugely beneficial in this case as hospitals always look for ways to be cost and care-efficient. The major challenge arises when senior management doesn’t quite appreciate the worth of investments in IT and Software to support this change
Reimbursements or Lower Compensations
Telemedicine can prove as a boon in case of huge cost reduction and far greater penetration of health services. According to a study by Towers Watson, an annual savings of $6 billion could accrue in healthcare costs if all currently deployed tele health applications could replace physician, emergency department, and urgent care visits. However, a major challenge to its successful implementation is that of reimbursement. A sizeable proportion of people who provide telemedicine services are either not reimbursed at all or receive lower compensation from care companies for telemedicine compared to in-person care.
Interoperability of IT systems
Another major challenge that needs to be overcome in order to drive adoption is the Interoperability of IT systems. EHRs maintained by separate providers are often disparate databases that either have little or no connection at all. This inhibits their potential to a greater extent of providing an integrated information repository of each patient that can be put to various primary and secondary uses, such as quality improvement. The lack of standardized reporting systems also contributes to the problem of decision making in the time of treatments.
These are the major challenges impacting the Healthcare IT industry in today’s world.