With the highest cost of healthcare, the United States spends approximately $4.3 trillion annually or $130,000 per person (Peter G. Peterson Foundation, 2023). These rising costs are largely related to variables such as the rising cost of healthcare, the aging baby boomer population, poor management of chronic illnesses, and misuse of healthcare services at appropriate levels of care. At the same time, organizations are facing challenges in providing quality care while maintaining a well-staffed hospital that offers the latest innovative evidence-based solutions.
Nonetheless, there are multiple innovative and implementable solutions that can help reduce the overall cost of delivering patient care. These solutions include:
Organizational costs are directly tied to the efficiency of the overall operational system which is inclusive of patient registration, patient discharge, and every single patient encounter in-between. The optimization of these processes is a critical element in reducing rising healthcare costs and improving patient health outcomes, while also potentially increasing costs. For example, medDispense ® automated drug dispensing cabinets aid in the improvement of provider workflow by reducing medication errors, streamlining medication administration, and minimizing the time spent on manual tasks.
It’s no secret that the management of chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and kidney disease are costly conditions to manage due to the multi-layered approach needed to effectively manage these conditions. Moreover, the insertion of COVID-19 accelerated these costs causing many organizations to implement immediate telehealth solutions to aid in the effective management like AccessPoint™ Telehealth Workstation on Wheels. By leveraging telehealth-based care delivery, organizations can reduce the need for frequent in-person visits, thereby lowering the cost of patient care without compromising patient outcomes. Additionally, they can remotely monitor critical patient dynamics, such as blood pressure, which can lead to reduced hospital readmissions and unnecessary emergency department visits.
One of the most effective and sustainable methodologies to improve healthcare spending, while also addressing improving quality of life for the patients that we serve is to engage and educate recipients of healthcare. By providing educational resources, interactive tools, and communication platforms, organizations can promote patient self-management and improve adherence to treatment plans. This can lead to better health outcomes, reduced hospital readmissions, and lower overall costs of care.
Have you ever heard of the saying “The Proof is in the Pudding”? Essentially, this means that if an organization wants to know where the opportunities lay to improve, then follow the data because data analytics enables healthcare organizations to gain valuable insights into their operations. When data is obtained on patient outcomes, resource utilization, and workflow efficiency, healthcare institutions can identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions which can help optimize processes, reduce costs, and enhance the quality of patient care.
Reducing healthcare cost is not linear but rather a multifaceted approach, which requires specific elements to be addressed. Regardless of what element your organization has an opportunity to address, evidence-based innovative solutions should be considered to ensure that healthcare quality delivery of care is at the forefront of all decisions made, which leads to healthy healthcare savings.