A Full Suite Of HIM Services Effectively Caters To Individual Hospital Needs

BACKGROUND

Aria Health is the largest healthcare provider in Northeast Philadelphia and Lower Bucks County. With three leading-edge community hospitals and a strong network of outpatient centers and primary care physicians, Aria upholds a longstanding tradition of bringing advanced medicine and personal care to the many communities it serves. The health information management (HIM) team is a key driver in Aria’s financial and clinical success. Using the best-of-breed approach to technology for optimum performance, Aria realized a potential downside in dealing with multiple vendors and contracts.

CHALLENGES: Multiple HIM Vendors

Aria’s philosophy has consistently been to use best-of-breed services and technology providers to deal with internal needs. However, dealing with multiple vendors and contracts makes it difficult to determine responsibility and solve problems when several players are involved.

Sigrid Warrender, RHIA, Director of HIM, always felt the benefits of having best-of-breed partners outweighed the risks. However, increasing management demands caused by the move to ICD-10, Meaningful Use, and the need to comply with stronger HIPAA requirements raised several questions:

  • Does it make sense to manage even more vendor relationships?
  • Is it more prudent to deal with one vendor that can handle multiple responsibilities, and have service level agreements in place to ensure success?
  • If using a single vendor in HIM, what characteristics would that vendor need to possess?

“We would refer any or all of Ciox’s services to other HIM departments. Ciox is very customer driven and amenable to hearing input for future product development and enhancements. They listen and then deliver; something that really sets them apart from other HIM vendors.” Sigrid Warrender, RHIA, Director, Health Information Management

SOLUTION: Consolidating ROI, Imaging and Coding Solutions

Partnering with Ciox for release of information (ROI), imaging, and coding solutions. Working with Ciox to consolidate these functions brings five strategic benefits:

    • A single company offering all services to HIM
    • Reduced number of vendors and contracts
    • Tighter integration of HIM departmental workflow
    • Deeper understanding of organizational goals
    • Ability to address new opportunities and meet future HIM

needs

Utilizing a single, trusted partner to provide a full suite of HIM services is a major win for Aria Health. “We know all the people involved at every level and from each division of Ciox,” mentions Warrender. “Now we can begin to have broad-based strategic conversations about the direction of HIM in an electronic world and look to our single partner to help solve those challenges.”

From an ROI perspective, Warrender appreciates Ciox’s high level of quality service and turnaround time. Ciox employees are on the frontlines and blend in completely with in-house staff, providing exceptional customer service to both patients and requesters. The same high quality is delivered by the coding services division where responsiveness is critical.

“We know and trust Ciox’s coding team, they are very responsive to our staffing needs, but they also do their own internal assessments and coder training; a win-win for our department,” Warrender adds.

At a Glance

Aria Health is the largest healthcare provider in Northeast Philadelphia and Lower Bucks County.

  • 3 acute care hospitals: 477 licensed beds
  • 29,000 admissions per year
  • 120,000 emergency visits per year
  • 146,000 outpatient visits per year

Challenge

Evolving from best-of-breed to one vendor for HIM services

Solution and Benefits

  • Highly efficient departmental workflow
  • More effective vendor management
  • Tighter management reporting and analytics
  • Integration of people, processes, and technology
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