By Naveen Sarabu, Director, Product Management and Strategy, Liaison Healthcare Informatics
Although Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) may replace the fee-for-service model for healthcare with a low-cost alternative, this boon may come at a price. According to a recent study, data requirements are proving costly. A small ACO may need to spend over a million dollars to implement its new systems, while a larger ACO’s price tag might be in the vicinity of $4 million.
One way to reduce spending on the IT needed to handle the increasing amounts of data is to use cloud solutions. According to many experts, a health information exchange (HIE) is the best way to provide connectivity between the different stakeholders in an ACO. However, a traditional HIE cannot effectively “integrate and aggregate” all of the data needed and create interoperability among incompatible technology platforms and data formats, especially when the number of organizations involves grows. Cloud-based services (see Beyond HIEs: Cloud Connectivity for ACOs), however, can reconcile the differences in data and move the data to wherever patients and providers need it, not only linking apps within a hospital but apps across a whole healthcare organization and beyond.