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Survey: Smaller Hospitals Challenged with Improving ROI for Health IT

October 26, 2015
by Heather Landi
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Healthcare C-suite executives report that managing data and achieving a meaningful return on investment for health IT purchases are among the top challenges they are facing, according to a peer60 survey. And, the survey found that the smallest hospitals struggle the most with improving the ROI on IT purchases.

The survey, titled Into the Minds of the C-Suite, is based on feedback from 336 C-level healthcare executives from 320 hospitals. According to 64 percent of the C-level executives who responded to the survey, managing the switch to value-based reimbursement models is the biggest challenge that needs to be addressed within their organizations. When asked about their top challenges, C-level executives also cited coordinating care (56 percent), managing patient populations (54 percent), patient engagement (48 percent) and shortage of physicians and nurses (47 percent).

Among the C-level executive survey respondents, 36 percent cited managing data as a top challenge, 33 percent mentioned regulatory compliance, 31 percent listed a meaningful ROI on IT purchases and 30 percent listed improving information security. Eighteen percent of survey respondents mentioned reducing hospital acquired infections and 11 percent mentioned mergers and acquisitions as top challenges.

The survey report also compared responses by title, and, among the CEO respondents, managing the switch to value-based reimbursement models and shortages of physicians and nurses were listed as the top two challenges. CIOs, on the other hand, cited improving information security as their No. 1 challenge, followed by mergers and acquisitions. With a merger or an acquisition, CIOs are often challenged with the adoption of new IT solutions.

There also was wide variability in responses depending on the facility size (bed size) of the hospital or health system. C-suite executives from the smallest hospitals (1-25 beds) cited attracting and/or retaining physicians and nurses as their top challenge. The second biggest challenge for this group is improving the ROI on IT purchases, which indicates that vendors need to develop their solutions to truly scale to the needs of hospitals and provide best practices in the use of their solutions, specifically the cost imposed on smaller facilities.

Improvements to information security is a high-level concern among the largest hospitals (1,000+ sized facilities), according to the survey results, as larger hospitals have more protected health information (PHI) and are, therefore, larger targets for cyber criminals.

The survey also solicited feedback from C-level executives about their enterprise clinical IT vendors and looked at clinical IT market share by facility size. While Cerner and Epic have significant market shares among the larger hospitals and health systems, those with 500+ beds, Meditech has a sizeable stronghold of just over 50 percent among the survey’s sample of medium-sized hospitals (101-250 beds). The survey also found that Meditech had about a 25 percent share of the 26-100 bed size facilities.

And, the survey also asked C-level healthcare executives for feedback about the most innovative healthcare provider organizations and healthcare vendors. Survey respondents cited Mayo Clinic as the most innovative healthcare provider, followed by Kaiser, Cleveland Clinic, Geisinger, Intermountain Healthcare and HCA.

Within specific categories, 30 percent of C-level executive respondents cited Intermountain Healthcare for elite leadership, 33 cited Mayo for pushing the boundaries of quality of care and 30 percent cited Geisinger for most visionary.

Survey respondents cited Epic as the most innovative vendor and/or technology company, followed by Cerner, Apple, GE, Google, athenahealth and Theranos.


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