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January 2022 Connect with us Facebook Twitter Sign up  |  Archive  |  Advertise
Editor's e-Note
It’s a new year but that doesn’t mean the old concerns about patient access to records are going anywhere.

Reports indicate that health care organizations are finding it difficult to understand and comply with the stream of new regulations. This month’s E-News Exclusive offers a few timely pointers that hopefully will make the task a little easier to bear.

Lee DeOrio, editor
e-News Exclusive
Patient Right of Access and the Path to Compliance

HIM professionals play an increasingly critical role in privacy and security, release of information (ROI), protected health information (PHI), disclosure management, interoperability, patient access, and more. Those in the health care industry need to keep informed about issues surrounding patient access to records and the ongoing path to compliance.

The HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has conducted numerous investigations since 2019 due to patient complaints about not receiving timely access to their records. On November 30, 2021, the OCR announced the resolution of five investigations in its HIPAA Right of Access Initiative, bringing the total number of these enforcement actions to 25 since the initiative began.

To date, these cases can be stratified into four basic categories. This article examines each of these categories and clarifies where matters presently stand with regard to the patient’s right of access.

Full story »
Other News
How Analytics, AI Tools Can Overlook Multiracial Patients
The number of Americans who identify with more than one race is now the fastest-growing racial and ethnic category, which needs to be accounted for in data-driven tools that rely on race, according to Digital Health Business & Technology.

Emergency Medics Remain Locked Out of EHRs
Emergency medics are largely locked out of medicine’s vast information architecture, preventing them from accessing a patient’s medical history when they arrive on scene or learning their patients’ outcomes, according to STAT.
Products & Services
Online Scribe Training Platform Launches
ScribeConnect, a provider of medical scribe services, announces a medical scribe software platform designed to enable and assist health care organizations to implement and run their own internal medical scribe program. Medical scribe services have traditionally been provided by third-party scribe companies, but these services haven’t always been available to practices under a certain size or in certain geographies. Even with access to contracted scribe services, many health care organizations would prefer to operate their own scribe program but need some level of assistance, curriculum, and expertise to tackle recruitment, training, and management of their scribe program. The ScribeConnect Platform is designed to address all of these issues at affordable cost. Whether a remote clinic looking for a single scribe, or a metropolitan hospital looking for scribes throughout its various departments, the ScribeConnect Platform provides health care organizations with a pool of scribe candidates, technology to post jobs and vet candidates, and a scribe education curriculum designed for the professional workplace. Learn more »

Collaboration Works to Find Revenue Cycle Talent
Cassidy Health, a provider of an on-demand talent marketplace built specifically for the needs of health care revenue cycle, announces a partnership with athenahealth. As part of the athenahealth Marketplace, the Cassidy Health platform is now available to athenahealth’s growing network of health care providers. Cassidy Health is a disruptive technology platform that connects health care employers directly with high caliber, vetted freelance revenue cycle talent at all levels. athenahealth is a network-enabled, results-oriented software and services company that offers medical record, revenue cycle, patient engagement, and care coordination services for ambulatory and hospital clients nationwide. Learn more »

New Suite of Products Adds Value to Chart Retrievals
Ciox Health announces the release of Ciox Data Utilities, a suite of solutions designed to add value to digital clinical chart retrievals. The suite is offered either standalone or as a bundle with Ciox Digital Direct, a solution for automated EMR chart extraction. Ciox Data Utilities includes multiple offerings with Structured Data Delivery and Data Harmonization available now and additional utilities to follow. Clinical data retrieval campaigns regularly conclude when a member’s chart information (often coming directly from multiple provider EHR systems as unstructured, scanned and/or exported data) is delivered in flat pdf files. Because data in this format are challenging for analytics to process and humans to navigate, and will become increasingly difficult as more sources are digitized and originate from variable sources, they need to be structured and organized to be consumed effectively by any use case. Ciox Data Utilities unlocks and enhances the information harvested from the existing retrieval efforts, extending greater value downstream within the health plan organization. Learn more »
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Industry Insight
White Paper Details Technology’s Impact on CDI

AHIMA and the Association of Clinical Documentation Integrity Specialists (ACDIS) announce a new white paper that examines how rapid advancement in health care technology is driving changes to the practice of clinical documentation integrity (CDI).

CDI is critical to the usability of medical data and ongoing efforts to improve patient care. New technologies, such as artificial intelligence and natural language processing, can streamline CDI initiatives, reduce administrative burden on providers, and achieve high-quality documentation. But the use of these tools requires a more sophisticated approach to assessing and incorporating them into the documentation workflow, the paper’s authors say.

The technology tools suggest query opportunities to the CDI professional based on “triggers” that are identified during an automated scan of the health record, such as documentation, vital signs, lab results, radiology findings, or medications. It’s essential, according to the authors, that CDI professionals continue to look for opportunities in the record that were not suggested by the technology: “This is especially true when the opportunities are more complex and require critical analysis by the CDI professional to determine the big picture of what is happening during the admission and the clarification needed to reflect the true cause and effect of some conditions.”

The paper also includes information on the variety of CDI-related technology solutions available, steps organizations can take to effectively evaluate new technology solutions, sample questions for vendor selection, and standards for achieving a compliant query practice.

Read more »
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