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By the Numbers-Provider Type Print E-mail
Written by Jeffrey Herschler   
Monday, 05 July 2010 15:51
SELECT FLORIDA HEALTHCARE LICENSEES 
 
Provider Type                                         # of Licensees
                                                                 Statewide
 
Chiropractic Physician                         5,165
Medical Doctor                                    55,147
Osteopathic Physician                         5,224
Podiatrist                                                1,636
Physician Assistant                              5,008
Registered Nurse                               231,505
Last Updated on Monday, 04 April 2011 06:11
 
Interview Exclusive - Executive Commentary on HCR (conclusion) Print E-mail
Written by Jeffrey Herschler   
Monday, 05 July 2010 15:43

Publisher's note:

I was in Orlando April 22nd and 23rd attending the Florida Institute of CPA's Annual Health Care Industry Conference (www.FICPA.org).

There, I had the opportunity to interview Micky Smith, CEO of Oak Hill Hospital, Lee Huntley, CEO of Central Florida Health Alliance and John Kolosky, COO of H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center.  Excerpts from that meeting were published last week. I caught up with Mr. Smith, Mr. Huntley and Mr. Kolosky recently and posed one final question.  Thanks for reading FHIweekly.

 Jeff Herschler

Proponents of Obama Care predict that 21st century healthcare providers will meet the current challenges and that today's healthcare practices and facilities can not only survive but perhaps even prosper.

And of course the cynics are predicting runaway costs, unfunded liabilities and a nation headed towards mediocrity, a lower standard of living and crushing debts.

Who is closer to the truth, the buoyant optimists or the doomsday prophets?

Mr. Smith stated, "As always, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. The most powerful engine in healthcare reform is data transparency. Look how the rate of hospital acquired infections in Florida has plummeted since the state began publishing that information on the web. As cost, pricing, and quality data is shared with the consumer, ultimately at the physician level, we will see dramatic improvements in our health care system. If for no other reason that the poor performers will disappear."

Mr Huntley added, "I'd say it is too soon to tell.  It's true that as an industry, health care is expensive, highly regulated and cannot afford itself as millions of boomers enter the bounds of Medicare while at the same time trying to cover 60 million uninsured.  I'm biased as a provider of care. Too much too fast with too little input by experts into big government's solution. On the other hand, Obama tried. I can tell you this, healthcare won't prosper, especially as funds are reallocated from one topic to another, without regulatory relief. There are a lot of good ideas though, inside healthcare reform: e.g. bundling, emphasis on primary care and more.  But one not there is individuals and society taking responsibility for their own health status. Heck, we can't even regulate fat, sodium ridden fast food.  Sorry to be all over the place on this one.  It's just too soon to tell.  My gut: 40% buoyant optimism, 60% pessimism."

Mr. Kolosky responded, "This is more related to the riots in Greece than we would like to think.  We simply cannot afford the way we have always done things. The Bad News:  We, as a society, are living beyond our means, and runaway health care costs are one manifestation.  The Good News:  We, as a society, have faced bigger challenges head on and addressed them.  So why be optimistic?  When we face these challenges and deal with them, we are better off as a society.   This will not be painless.  When we take "waste" out of the system  in, for example, administrative bureaucracy, we will cost jobs and changes to people's careers. When we take duplicative or unnecessary services out of the system, we will cost someone money.  When we hold people accountable for performance, it may be revelatory and somewhat painful. However, we will adjust and be better off than we were before.   More importantly, patients will be better off than before.  So, in the end, I'm optimistic.......but as my doctor sometimes says "this may hurt a bit"." 

Last Updated on Thursday, 23 December 2010 07:04
 
Interview Exclusive-Executive Commentary on HCR (Part I) Print E-mail
Written by Jeffrey Herschler   
Monday, 05 July 2010 15:35

Executive Commentary on HCR

April 23, 2010                                      Orlando, FL

Publisher's note:

I was in Orlando April 22nd and 23rd attending the Florida Institute of CPA's Annual Health Care Industry Conference (www.FICPA.org).

There, I had the opportunity to interview Micky Smith, CEO of Oak Hill Hospital, John Kolosky, COO of H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Lee Huntley, CEO of Central Florida Health Alliance. Excerpts from that meeting appear below.  Thanks for reading FHIweekly.

 Jeff Herschler 

 

Can HCR bend the cost curve?

Mr. Huntley asserted that bending the cost curve was inevitable as reimbursements are being cut. "Providers will be forced to do more with less" he stated.  As one example, Mr. Huntley pointed to the CMS emphasis on reducing hospital readmissions within 30 days.  "The jig is up" Mr. Smith commented succinctly adding the readmission penalty can unfairly punish the facility. One example of this would be the case where the readmission is caused by patient non-compliance with diet/lifestyle orders issued at discharge on the original admission. Mr. Kolosky suggested that EHR will vastly reduce duplicate testing. 

Will HCR force consolidation in the industry?

The panelists were unanimous that consolidation was an inevitable result of HCR.  Mr. Smith pointed out that highly leveraged practices and facilities will be forced to seek a merger or close their doors as the debt service will be unsustainable in a reduced reimbursement environment.  Meanwhile providers will be under close scrutiny by payers and those that regularly order unnecessary procedures "are out of business".  Mr. Smith went on to predict health industry job losses over the next several years as unnecessary and duplicate tests are eliminated.  Meanwhile, developments in information technology will lead to work force reductions in administration.

Should hospitals be organized as for profit institutions? Is that the right environment for optimal patient care?

Mr. Huntley pointed out that revenues must exceed cost in any business model.  "You must make money to survive regardless of your not for profit or for profit status" he asserted.  Mr. Kolosky suggested non profits will be threatened by local and state governments desperate for revenue sources. Loss of property tax exemptions would endanger the solvency of many non-profit entities in his view.

How will HCR affect your organization's health plan?

Mr. Kolosky noted that healthcare service utilization is typically high among the industry's workforce.  "They have access; they know all the new technologies" he stated.  Mr. Huntley suggested that HCR will accelerate some existing trends.  For example his facility will offer fewer health plan choices and continue to emphasize prevention and wellness programs

This and That

Another industry trend expected to accelerate is hospital acquisition of group practices according to thepanel.  All panelists agreed that our industry is in for half a decade, or more of "chaos" as providers and payers adjust to the new law, its interpretation and its enforcement.  Mark Fromberg of Marcum Rachlin suggested HCR was incomplete without tort reform.  The panelists agreed that defensive medicine contributes to healthcare inflation.  Kim Griffin of Deloitte asked what contributions Florida's CPA's could make to ease the transition for their clients.  Mr. Huntley emphatically demanded accurate and reliable data and analysis so executives can optimize rational decision making.

Last Updated on Thursday, 23 December 2010 07:06
 
Smart Pen Secret is Out! Print E-mail
Written by Jeffrey Herschler   
Tuesday, 23 March 2010 09:45

TECHNOLOGY UPDATE

smartpenHaving just hit the market in ’08, the Smart Pen is one of the best kept secrets in the tech world. It’s doubtful it will remain a secret for long. Like the Smart Phone, the Smart Pen is sure to catch fire once the general public learns of this versatile tool. This intelligent device works with special dot paper. Microdots in the paper allow the pen to record data via a tiny camera in the stylus tip. Special controls at the bottom of each page of the smart paper enable the user to navigate the various features of the pen which include audio playback and translation to various languages including French, German, Spanish and Japanese. The Smart Pen has countless applications, some of which have yet to be invented. "Applications to the healthcare industry will be profound" say Albert Santalo, CEO of CareCloud, a healthcare technology company based in Miami. A typical medical practice spends thousands of dollars and hours each year completing superbills, a charge sheet used to select the procedures and diagnosis codes that apply to the patient’s appointment, and then having a data entry clerk or transcriptionist input the data manually into the computerized billing system. The Smart Pen will streamline the process into seamless efficiency as the Smart Phone will download the data to the computer automatically via a USB port. Cost efficiencies will be realized and better healthcare will be achieved since human error will be minimized by the automated process. "And the best thing of all" says Santalo "practitioners don’t need to change their behavior. They complete the superbill with pen and paper and hand it off to their administrator just like they have for the past 50 years."

Smart Pen Video

Last Updated on Sunday, 25 July 2010 13:23
 
Veteran Ad Man Launches Marketing Firm to Serve Healthcare Clients Print E-mail
Written by Jeffrey Herschler   
Tuesday, 05 January 2010 00:00

Following the mantra of his old marketing professor at the University of Maryland, Jeff Herschler has found a need and filled it.  On January 4th, Mr. Herschler introduced FHIcommunications, a firm devoted to addressing the marketing needs of Florida's healthcare companies. 

"In my role as Advertising Director at Florida Medical Business, I constantly run across health professionals who need marketing support that goes beyond traditional print advertising," Mr. Herschler stated.  "My marketing professor from my college days would be proud" he went on to say. Then he added "FHIcommunications is quite simply an entrepreneurial response to demand in the marketplace."

FHIcommunications will address the marketing needs of Florida's Health Industry in five key areas:

·         Digital Branding

·         Media Planning/Media Buying

·         E-mail/Direct Mail Campaigns

·         Market Research/Surveys

·         Event Planning, Marketing and Production

The firm will also produce a weekly E-mail Newsletter and content rich Website.  "FHIcommunications is all about connecting the various stakeholders in Florida's Health Industry" Mr. Herschler noted.  "The digital components will keep Physicians, Hospital Executives, Group Practice Administrators, Ancillary Facility Owners, Pharmaceutical Representatives, Medical Device Manufacturers and Insurers connected to and informed about Florida's fast changing healthcare environment" he added.

For more information about FHIcommunications, please contact:

Jeff Herschler
305.299.3937 or JHerschler@Comcast.net

Last Updated on Saturday, 04 May 2013 15:48
 
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