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For The Record
E-Newsletter    April 2023
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Editor's E-Note

New research shows that data analytics-based strategies used at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic have a significant role to play in ensuring patient access to testing in future infectious disease outbreaks.

In addition to reading our e-newsletter, be sure to visit For The Record’s website at www.fortherecordmag.com. We welcome your feedback at edit@gvpub.com. Follow For The Record on Facebook and Twitter, too.

Kate Jackson, editor
In This E-Newsletter
E-News Exclusive

Data Analytics Could Prevent Testing Bottlenecks During Future Pandemics

Breaking research demonstrates the efficacy of two data analytics-based strategies that clinical labs employed to meet COVID-19 testing demands during the height of the pandemic. These findings, published in the data science issue of American Association for Clinical Chemistry’s (AACC) The Journal of Applied Laboratory Medicine, give labs a blueprint for using data analytics to ensure patient access to testing during future infectious disease outbreaks.

A major challenge labs faced during the first two years of the pandemic was keeping up with testing demands in the midst of chronic supply shortages. While this isn’t currently a serious issue with US COVID-19 cases being relatively low, it’s only a matter of time before labs could be grappling with this problem again—either because of a surge in COVID-19 cases caused by a new variant, or because of a new infectious disease outbreak entirely.

One team of researchers led by Rohit B. Sangal, MD, MBA, FACEP, of the Yale University School of Medicine, has shown that labs can use EHR systems to ensure scarce testing resources are optimally allocated during a pandemic.

Other News
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Keeping Up With Complaints
Complaints by consumers against health agencies are on the rise. Health and Human Services points to a 69% increase over the last five years. Roughly two-thirds of these involve possible breaches of health information privacy and security. PBS reports on the efforts by the department’s Office for Civil Rights to more quickly investigate and reduce the backlog of pending investigations.
Ask the Expert
Have a coding or documentation question? Get an expert answer by sending an email to edit@gvpub.com.
Industry Insight
Extending the Time to Comment on Prior Authorization Process
The HIMSS EHR Association believes its members don’t have adequate time to review and respond about the Advancing Interoperability and Improving Prior Authorization Processes proposed rule. Healthcare IT News reports on its efforts to gain an extension. Learn more »
Products & Services
Release of Information Online Course Series
Is your release of information (ROI) training program in disrepair? Renovate your education with Haugen Academy’s two-part ROI online course series. Part one provides an overview of the fundamentals while part two builds upon those foundational components and addresses more complex ROI scenarios, including how to release sensitive information, how to handle requests from law enforcement, and more. Learn more »

A Better Way to CDI
Core CDI calls it physician documentation improvement, and it focuses on physician-centric documentation solutions that are physician-driven and help providers increase cash flow. Services include observation rate review, clinical coding assessment, revenue cycle assessment, chargemaster reviews, education, appeal assessment and modernization, and clinical documentation improvement (CDI). Learn more »

AHIMA White Paper Identifies Opportunities and Challenges With Collecting, Integrating, and Using Social Determinants of Health Data
An AHIMA survey of health information professionals found that nearly eight in 10 health care organizations collect social determinants of health data (SDOH) but still face challenges related to the collection, coding, and use of these clinically relevant data. AHIMA commissioned the study, and its white paper addresses the lack of standardization and integration of SDOH data into an individual’s medical record; insufficient training and education about collecting, coding, and using SDOH data; and limited use of SDOH data to communicate between health care providers and community-based referral organizations. Learn more »

Improving Consumer Access to Electronic Health Information
The Sequoia Project, a nonprofit advocate for nationwide health information exchange, has launched the Consumer Voices Workgroup to explore the barriers consumers face to accessing, using, and sharing their health information. Learn more »

Verisma and ScanSTAT Announce Merger
Verisma, a disclosure management partner servicing diverse health care environments their most complicated release challenges, has merged with ScanSTAT, release of information experts specializing in physician groups, ambulatory services, health systems, and hospitals with expanded HIM solutions. Coming together under the Verisma brand, the combined company provides faster turnaround times through automation, expanded services to manage compliance requirements, and advanced tools to improve patient experience.
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