The purpose of this research analysis was to discover tools healthcare organizations and practitioners can use to increase revenue streams while facing the rising costs of healthcare and an increasingly aged population relying on Medicare and Medicaid for healthcare coverage. Traditionally Medicare and Medicaid offer very little in the way of comprehensive medical services. This has inspired with healthcare community however to come to the realization that hierarchical care within healthcare facilities is no longer a viable means of providing care to patients in need. Cutbacks can be made but often they will result in substandard care for those that need care the most.
The researcher conducting this review proposes healthcare facilities adopt a horizontal approach to healthcare. Such an approach would as inferred by the literature, enable hospitals to work with communities, volunteers and junior level providers to provide comprehensive preventive and minimally invasive care for patients. Such care would involve training and educating junior medical professionals or nurses so they have the ability to treat patients more comprehensively using advanced diagnostic tools.
Technology has afforded healthcare facilities the ability to become more efficient. Despite this, hospitals and many other facilities continue to rely on less than optimal or efficient resources for carrying out day-to-day functions. It is the role of hospital administrators to recognize the need for their communities to spend more in the way of technology and training to produce greater revenues in the future. Outreach programs should focus on providing those with Medicaid and Medicare coverage ample access to community resources that will provide them with the preventive and palliative care they need as they age. Hospitals must also recognize the ability of information systems including those introduced by companies like the SSI Group, Inc., to minimize the amount of paperwork, billing and filing involved in patient care. By not relying as much on administrative tasks and by not producing as much paperwork, hospitals and other healthcare facilities become "thrifty." Less paperwork means less expense. Most patient information can be stored electronically in a safe and ethical manner. This will also prove more efficient and reduce costs as specialists working with a patient can share information with each other from one end of the world to another with little more than a computer between them.
Preventive care is also a first line resource for healthcare agencies interested in increasing revenue streams for healthcare facilities. More and more people are interested in preventing disease rather than treating disease (Mohan, 2002). The preventive and community-based healthcare model has long been cited as a tool for increasing and maintaining adequate streams of revenues for healthcare facilities. Larger entities including hospitals can cut back on costs by adopting less invasive procedures, procedures patients become eligible for because they are in better health when first admitted to the hospital. For hospitals to realize their goals of sustainable economic resources, they must first be willing to adopt a new mindset. They must be willing to view healthcare and patients in a continuum, one that includes efficiency of service and quality over quantity. Once healthcare entities start operating in this way, revenues will increase and the costs associated with healthcare decline. Medicare and Medicaid no longer serve as problematic factors when healthcare organizations learn to work in an efficient manner as in the one proposed in this paper.
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