The Affordable Care Act was introduced in the United States in 2010. Since then, doctors and hospital networks alike have been alarmed. By 2020, the United States could be short 46,000 healthcare specialists due to the overwhelming response of patients demanding their rightful health care needs. Here are four reasons the Affordable Care Act has increased the need for health information specialists.
There are Major Changes to Implement for Government and Private Health Insurances
Doctor’s offices can still have their backup paperwork; however, everything healthcare-related is required to be digital. This includes patient contact information, medical exams, x-rays, medication history, and billing. If it were up to the doctors, the system would stay simplistic, but the government requires these changes. Fortunately, private health insurance companies are seeing a positive impact on their behalf as well.
Now, government and insurance agencies are fining medical practitioners if they are guilty of numerous billing errors. That’s less payout for them. So, strict and fewer billing codes are needed to verify this program will be successful. To make these necessary changes and keep up with the frequent updates that are sure to come, healthcare providers need health information specialists to not only implement these initial steps but also continue to upgrade as necessary.
Imagine a private practice that has been in business for 10 or 15 years. They may have many active patients from their early years. All these records must be updated according to the new regulations. Some of the biggest regulations involve those offices that receive Medicaid and Medicare funds who must comply with the use of electronic medical filing.
The Affordable Care Act Means Accuracy is Vital for Small Practices
To achieve compliance with the Affordable Care Act’s stipulations, it’s important for a practice to be totally accurate. The fines implemented for too many coding errors are extremely high. After paying toward student loans and their malpractice premiums, doctors truly can’t afford to take a hit. Due to this, small practices, home health agencies, and retirement communities are searching for the best health information specialists to avoid these fines.
Mergers and Acquisitions Mean More System Integrations
Larger hospital networks will acquire smaller ones due to their purchasing power. These mergers and acquisitions mean more system integrations. Information between hospital networks will consistently shift. Network security needs to be tightened. Online backups become even more critical. As you can see, health information specialists are just as important as doctors. Technology will drive the health care industry.
Many New Patients, Few Medical Specialists
The need to meet the the health care needs of America’s baby boomers was already strong. However, with the introduction of the Affordable Care Act, it truly reinforced the need for more medical specialists.
With everyone being mandated to have medical insurance, clinics, doctor’s offices, and hospitals all will be overwhelmed, because Americans can now afford the care. Having this required health care surely means they will use it. Since organizing, documenting, and ensuring patient files are secure, many students are flocking towards a health informatics degree online.
The health care industry is in need of more health information specialists. They not only help with keeping patient records secure but also keeping practices in compliance.