A new year it may be, but the financial challenges of the past still haunt healthcare facilities of today. With stifling economic hurdles of all sorts getting in the way, from the pandemic to the most recent Ukraine war, global inflation is threatening to sink practices and businesses at large. Consequently, it’s important for healthcare services providers to seek out any means to bring down their expenditures. One way to significantly lighten this financial burden is through the incorporation of remote patient monitoring (RPM) programs.
Today, we’ll deep dive into a handful of the many ways RPM can provide financial relief for hospitals and patients alike.
Chronic illnesses or long-term diseases such as diabetes and heart disease inflict the lion’s share of expenses on healthcare systems. Just to paint a picture, this particular niche of care accounts for 86% of healthcare and its associated costs.
If facilities were to ditch financially unsustainable conventional long-term care formulas, then this would certainly translate into enormous cost reduction benefits in the following ways:
Across the United States alone, chronic diseases hog over $3.7 trillion of the country’s annual budget. That accounts for approximately close to 20% of the nation’s GDP (gross domestic product). Yet findings by the Financial Times suggest that fusing remote patient monitoring with healthcare services could result in savings to the tune of billions, which could be redirected into shoring up other aspects of healthcare.
Avoidable hospitalisation and rehospitalization are also dragging healthcare systems back financially, with a recent report by the NCBI estimating that the US government spends over $52 billion on patient readmissions every month.
So how can remote patient monitoring services solve this problem for hospitals? To get the answers to that, we’ll need to trace back to some of the most important reasons for rehospitalization in the first place:
All these challenges can be remedied by the singular solution of RPM, akin to killing five birds with one stone. Round-the-clock data and increased physician-patient touchpoints and accessibility first of all improve engagement while eliminating gaps in the care process. Additionally, the scourge of HAIs reduces due to less frequent in-person appointments.
In terms of great need and when the medical workflow has been stretched thin by skyrocketing demand, the traditional solution has always been to increase the personnel base.
However, while this might provide a reprieve and bump up net revenue in the short term, the financial consequences, in the long run, can not just negate but even reverse these gains. That’s because, after the surge has passed, care facilities remain with an inflated wage bill.
By turning to remote patient monitoring, the need to hire new staff or the number of clinical personnel necessary to plug deficiencies in the workflow reduces. That’s because several duties in the physician’s job description can be delegated to a third-party, namely:
Consequently, a lower workflow burden means existing staff can easily cope with patient surges, with a significant chunk of duties going to a third party. The latter can then easily adjust resources to match these fluctuations resulting in more cost-efficient staffing flexibility.
Additionally, even in smaller facilities keeping specialties on the payroll permanently is financially draining as volume deficiencies make it difficult to do so. RPM comes to the rescue with partial employment.
In business, beyond reducing operational expenses, the other way to make more money is to increase inflow in the first place. Once you’ve exploited every cost-reduction nook and cranny, remote patient monitoring can better help balance the financial equation for your practice.
For hospitals, RPM offers the prospect of not just cutting costs but also expanding revenue streams for conventional workflows.
For example, with remote patient monitoring, hospitals now open the door to the possibility of RPM reimbursements. This covers additional revenue that your practice stands to receive from:
We must also state that the benefit of RPM reimbursements in cost reduction is two-fold. Beyond just growing revenue, it also builds up funds to reinvest in other areas. When that happens, your facility can become more competitive through product/service price reduction.
Remote patient monitoring also increases opportunities for ambulatory patient management. Patients don’t necessarily have to be treated in-house, paving way for a devolved care model that frees up a practice’s occupancy while reducing on-site utility costs that come with monitoring patients in-premise.
As a result, hospitals can tend to larger volumes beyond their physical operational capacity. That also brings in more revenue for the establishment for just a fraction of the costs.
Overall, RPM creates a win-win situation for all parties in the care equation. From the patient’s perspective, there are also cost-saving benefits to be had. Out-of-pocket expenses naturally dwindle while recovery time shortens and that lowers the time spent in care. Beyond these, ambulatory patients can also benefit from at-home support and the ability to keep up with revenue-generating activities or work that funds their treatment.
Remote patient monitoring services can lower a hospital’s expenses in several ways as we’ve uncovered today. It can therefore lead to more positive net revenue, which is also pivotal in enhancing the patient experience and the quality of your care processes as well. Advisably, RPM becomes even more profitable and efficient when paired with other cost reduction strategies, chief among them operational intelligence or benchmarking. Cut costs and grow your facility’s bottom line today with Techindia’s remote patient monitoring services.
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