Providers Believe Healthcare Reform Will Increase Their Costs, According to IVANS Survey

52% of Providers Surveyed Doubt Stimulus Money Will Successfully Encourage Adoption of Healthcare Information Technology

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IVANS Inc.

Providers are diverse and significant attention from the government needs to be placed on addressing their different needs. A small nursing home in a rural area will have IT requirements that vary from a multi-facility hospital. The interests and concerns of all involved stakeholders need to be met for a meaningful use of HIT to occur.

Stamford, CT (Vocus) June 5, 2009

IVANS, Inc., a leading provider of healthcare connectivity solutions and services, announced results from a recent survey that showed healthcare providers believe in the importance of reform, but are concerned about the toll proposed approaches could take on their businesses and patients. According to the IVANS survey, 72% of healthcare providers believe a pay-for-performance model could lead to improved patient outcomes, but 79% said it would increase their costs of doing business, most likely due to increased reporting and record-keeping requirements. Providers believe a national health insurance plan would be even less effective, with 60% saying it would either increase costs or have no affect at all.

The survey also revealed providers' concerns regarding administrative reform. More than 50% of healthcare providers believe the billions of dollars from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) earmarked for healthcare information technology (HIT) will have little to no success in encouraging HIT adoption. Clare DeNicola, president and CEO of IVANS, Inc., said, "Providers are diverse and significant attention from the government needs to be placed on addressing their different needs. A small nursing home in a rural area will have IT requirements that vary from a multi-facility hospital. The interests and concerns of all involved stakeholders need to be met for a meaningful use of HIT to occur."

Confusion in the marketplace around what the right solution should be and how to pay for it were also expressed by survey participants. Sixty-one percent of those surveyed believe electronic health records (EHRs) could have a positive impact on their businesses, but 82% cited lack of budget as their biggest challenge in implementing HIT. Only 17% of providers surveyed are participating or planning to participate in a Health Information Exchange (HIE) over the next 12 months. Without the mechanism to share records among a patient's caregivers (e.g. via Health Information Exchanges or similar data exchanges), the value of an EHR is severely restricted, and providers could face reduced payments from Medicare and other payers if a system lacks interoperability.

"While there are many pieces to the healthcare puzzle that still need to be figured out, the use of HIEs and EHRs will create greater information transparency and will play a critical role in whether healthcare reform succeeds or does not," said DeNicola. "The government needs to get tactical about what qualifies for the funding and what doesn't as providers are wary to start implementation without this understanding."

About IVANS
IVANS Inc. provides the property/casualty insurance and healthcare industries with fully managed network, electronic data interchange (EDI) and agency-company interface solutions to help solve complex business issues. Headquartered in Stamford, Conn. and a CMS approved vendor, IVANS serves over 700 insurance and healthcare organizations, more than 30,000 independent agents and 135,000 healthcare providers. With over 25 years of experience successfully managing networks, the company also offers its clients relentless customer service, security solutions, reliable and accessible technical helpdesk support and expert enablement. IVANS, which was formed by 21 insurance companies, also has offices in Tampa, Fla. and Cincinnati, Ohio. For information, visit http://www.ivans.com.

About IVANS 2009 Healthcare Provider Survey
A white paper outlining the survey conclusions and IVANS recommendations is available and can be requested by contacting Cecile M. Locurto of IVANS, Inc. In addition, IVANS is continuing in-depth discussions with healthcare providers regarding the impact of healthcare reform and technology issues on their businesses. This white paper is the first in a series that will cover a variety of technology issues surrounding healthcare reform and how providers are responding.

Contact                                
Cecile M. Locurto
IVANS, Inc.
203-698-7218                                        
Cecile.Locurto(at)ivans.com

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