News

Actionable Data in Fed Health Comes Down to the Individual for VA, CMS and DOL

Publish Date
12/03/2019
Author
Heather Seftel-Kirk

FedHealthIT’s President, Susan Sharer, recently had the opportunity to sit down with CNSI CEO Todd Stottlemyer to discuss challenges in Federal health, suggestions for Government and industry, and how CNSI is driving toward those challenges.

What are Some of the Challenges in Federal Health?

I think the broader challenge is understanding how we use technology to achieve both better health outcomes for patients and lower costs. Ultimately, I think the answer to many challenges requires centering the conversation.

If we are talking about consumer engagement, we need to hone in on the who – the individual consumer and/or patient. When we talk about interoperability, again we need to center on the individual consumer and/or patient and how we create a better ecosystem and better architecture to support that individual consumer and/or patient. Technology absolutely can help support the mission of providing quality Healthcare outcomes at lower costs, but without that centering conversation to really drive the effort, it’s hard to be successful.

What Suggestions do You Have for Government to Make Their Data Actionable?

I think that every conversation should start with the individual consumer and/or patient in mind. What are we doing to improve our systems that benefits the individual consumer and/or patient? How are we using data to provide better information to the individual consumer and/or patient to make decisions? How do we use technology to bring data together and turn it into actionable information to help that person visualize and make decisions about their Healthcare and treatment from a quality and cost standpoint? By focusing on the individual consumer and/or patient, we can start to make more effective and better-informed decisions.

What are Some of the Ways Government Should Think About Disruption?

Government is a natural disruptor and has been for a long time. If we think about the issue of avoidable re-admissions and the idea of continuing care after discharge to avoid those instances, that policy change was disruptive. If we think about Government driving value-based care, with a value orientation and incentives to reward keeping people healthy instead of just treating them when they are sick, that is a great disruption. If we think about the Government’s mandate around electronic health records, that is a disruptive initiative.

I think there is still great opportunity to do much more, to continue to look at other industries, at non-traditional ways to use and deploy technology. Some of those technologies – things like sensors, virtual health and remote monitoring – are already changing the way we practice healthcare. There is already a lot of disruption taking place, but there is always the opportunity to do more.

If we think about big data, I think we’ve just seen the tip of the iceberg in terms of what we are doing now with our data and what can be done to turn data from various sources into actionable information.

Tell us a Bit More About Companies Outside the Space Disrupting Healthcare

There is a great opportunity today to look outside the Healthcare industry to avoid being insular. There are some great commercial examples of how non-Healthcare companies focus on customer engagement, safety, and other operational decisions that parallel challenges faced by the Healthcare sector. It’s important to continue to do that and to look more widely at what private companies are doing, what they have developed, and how it could be applied to solve challenges in the Healthcare sector.

It can be challenging for Government because those same trusted relationships may not exist, but it’s important they be open to those non-traditional companies and technology players.

Do You Have Any Recommendations for VA and the Huge Effort They are Undertaking?

The recommendation is always the same – start with a conversation about the individual consumer and/or the patient. How is what you are doing going to improve the individual consumer and/or patient experience? How do you empower that patient to make better Healthcare decisions?

We in the Healthcare sector are in the unique position of personally experiencing the results of our efforts. Whether it is family or friends, whether on the Government side or the commercial side, we all have experiences in Healthcare that include the complexity of forms, wait times, cost, not knowing where and how to get the best outcomes. The patient can only be a better decision maker if they have the information they need and if the Healthcare system is as easy to navigate and as seamless as possible.

Where is CNSI Heading?

Our focus has been on developing and building products to support the administration of Healthcare and related claims for states and Federal agencies including the VA, CMS, and the Department of Labor. We want to expand that. We want to be known as having deep Healthcare subject matter expertise combined with outstanding technology, with top software developers and engineers, focusing on improving the administrative aspects of Healthcare and with analytics capabilities to bring data together from various sources and make it actionable.

We’ll be looking strategically to make acquisitions where we have gaps or want to gain capabilities, especially in the area of analytics.

We have also been building out our team, hiring people who have been in these environments, who are experienced in the Healthcare sector, who have a passion for improving the human condition, and for improving health outcomes. The addition of Melissa Fannin earlier this summer is a great example. Melissa has experience with CMS and with the private sector. As a trauma RN, she is fluent from a clinical perspective. Melissa knows the client environment, has private sector experience, and a passion for our Healthcare mission.

We know that Healthcare touches us all. If we can bring every conversation and effort we are involved with down to the individual level, we have the potential to improve Healthcare for that individual and for broader populations.

About Todd Stottlemyer

Todd Stottlemyer came to CNSI late in 2018, bringing with him an extensive Healthcare background that included time supporting electronic health records, precision medicine, personalized health, and Healthcare policy. As CEO, he supports CNSI’s mission to deliver a broad range of health information technology enterprise solutions and customizable products to a diverse base of Healthcare and other clients through aligning, building, and managing innovative, high-quality, cost-effective solutions that help clients achieve their mission, enhance performance, and improve the health for over 50 million Americans.