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RCM Vendor Market Shows Mixed Function Adoption

October 2, 2013
by Gabriel Perna
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HIMSS Analytics, the Chicago-based analytics arm of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, has released a report on the revenue cycle management (RCM) software industry that indicates a mixed market, with high adoption for some capabilities and little headway made in the adoption of other solutions.

According to the report, there is a high level of adoption for vendor solutions in the areas of eligibility and scheduling, with work to be done around charity screening and propensity to pay. Seventy-seven percent of those surveyed had leveraged a vendor solution around eligibility, while 66 percent had done the same for scheduling. For charity screening, only 25 percent had used a vendor solution, 51 percent were still using a manual process.

Furthermore, the respondents, which included various-sized 537 hospitals, indicated their intent on replacing or purchasing net new solutions for RCM functions such as bill estimation, address validation, pre-authorization, and bill estimation, among others.

“We wanted to provide granularity around functions used in the Inpatient RCM arena, including how hospitals are approaching those functions and how large of a role they play in conducting transactions on an annual basis,” HIMSS Analytics research director, Brendan FitzGerald, said in a statement. “As the industry continues to change, a move toward vendor solutions by hospitals could help ease the burden of keeping up with financial regulations and help organizations move toward more seamless revenue cycle transactions.”

A recent series of reports released by market research firm Black Book revealed that even though the RCM software and services industry expects double digit increases in 2014, many U.S. hospitals have admitted they don’t have a sustainable RCM plan in place. Roughly two-thirds of U.S. hospitals that predicted in 2012 that they would replace their core RCM solution in 24 months have actually failed to initiate a sustainable RCM plan as of Q3 2013.

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