Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) may want to invest in healthcare consulting early on to anticipate possible needs next year. Preparing for telehealth initiatives in advance could mean assessing what steps the ACO has already taken and how vulnerable they could be to fraud. The new year may also bring new technological advancements that add to telehealth possibilities.
With operational assessments and other tools at their disposal, organizations can take important steps toward improvement and compliance with telehealth standards. Some of the factors these groups may want to consider in the coming months include the following:
- Adaptation to alternate payment models (APMs): With increased telemedicine options come the need to acknowledge the Department of Health and Human Services' different categories of healthcare payment. As the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) website lists, the third of these four categories pertains to "alternative payment models built on fee-for-service architecture." Alternative models accounted for "approximately 20 percent of Medicare fee-for-service payments to providers" in 2014, the source states.
- Robust data collection: Telehealth projects work best when supported by data, so maintaining enough means of procuring this may add to effectiveness.
- Wider patient care: Since remote health solutions can help boost patient satisfaction, organizations need to understand the programs that are best for them and consider ways to make them adapt to patient needs.
Organizations can take important steps toward improvement and compliance with telehealth standards.
Make possible financial incentives and technological improvements a reality with help from qualified consultants. Experts can help with forecasting strategies as well as operational guidance to synchronize all aspects of the organization's mission for 2016. Changing care requirements will be less daunting with a specified plan for dealing with them.