As Hospitals and Health Systems evolve into Clinically Integrated Networks their credentialed and referring providers are increasingly likely to provide care in an expanded patchwork of settings. This complicates the challenge of managing critical information about these providers that is central to supporting alliances between provider and referring organizations. Beyond the clinical, operational and financial improvements that come from ensuring the accuracy of this information, it can enhance referral outreach programs as well as provider and consumer marketing.
Managing referrals over a growing geographic area can be challenging, particularly when attempting to align health system goals and directives with a programmatic approach to provider search. Aligning with provider groups is more effective and efficient with accurate data about their network, specialty and provider affiliation. Generating reports that accurately identify all providers in a single sub-specialty across a large geographic area becomes a tool that can drive success.
Identifying referring physicians for targeting via a search tool also benefits from improved data accuracy. While it may be obvious that the effectiveness of any search function is only as good as the data being searched, the validity and completeness of the provider data should not be assumed. In addition to impacting referral management and marketing, universal access to accurate provider data should also be considered a critical subset of practice management workflow. Ubiquitous access to this information by those who need it can drive significant improvements in practice management operational efficiency in addition to the improved effectiveness of working with complete and accurate provider data.
Healthcare leaders must constantly re-examine the challenges affecting their organizations to ensure key issues are understood and managed. Implementing a provider data management program that keeps pace with the evolving dynamics of healthcare is a foundational piece of this puzzle.