Published on 10-Feb-2010
"Our business thrives on customer retention and satisfaction and, by integrating IBM Cognos BI into our existing environment; we’ve made a lot of customers very happy. Our offering combines revenue workflow and reporting capabilities, which provides a unique level of data access and reporting – something that positions us very well against the competition." - Mike McGuire, Director of Product Management, CareMedic Systems
CareMedic Systems Inc.
IBM Business Partner:
Among the many deciding factors, the IBM Cognos solution could handle the millions of rows of data that CareMedic’s customers were aggregating and presenting on a daily basis.
Integrate a business intelligence (BI) system into CareMedic’s existing revenue cycle workflow solution to provide hospital customers with robust reporting capabilities.
The integrated CareMedic and IBM Cognos 8 BI system allows hospital CFOs, directors, and mangers to conduct more in-depth analysis of operations and budget data.
Ability to run dashboards and key performance indicators (KPIs) in order to evaluate the current level of business; flexibility in slicing and dicing information for analysis purposes; quick and easy access to a variety weekly and monthly reports.
CareMedic Systems, Inc., based in St. Petersburg, Florida., is a healthcare industry leader in providing proactive financial management technology. More than 1,500 hospitals and 1,000 large clinics and ancillary facilities across the United States use CareMedic’s suite of revenue cycle management solutions to streamline cash flow, accelerate the reimbursement process and – ultimately – increase organizations’ bottom lines.
The company’s revolutionary product, the electronic Financial Record™ (eFR®), consolidates all revenue cycle information and activity in one place, eliminating information silos and uniting data from disparate systems. Not only does this improve workflow and operational efficiency, but it also enables CareMedic customers to put more time and effort into what’s most important – their patients.
CareMedic’s customers, large hospital networks and 200-plus bed hospitals, have faced numerous industry changes and challenges during the past few years including, federal government reform, new Medicare and Medicaid regulations and increasing patient visits. As a result, technology has become more important than ever in helping to make better business decisions and preserve hospital revenue. In 2003, CareMedic developed a revenue reporting tool for customers to use on top of its revenue cycle workflow tool, which aggregates data from patient accounting systems to provide an overall picture of accounts receivable and denials. However, its customers’ reporting needs continued to evolve.
“We reached a point where our customers needed more robust reporting capabilities for business, operational, and financial activities beyond the platform we had built ourselves,” says Mike McGuire, Director of Product Management, CareMedic Systems. “Seeing that our customers were already very pleased with our existing revenue cycle workflow solution, we decided to enhance our capabilities by integrating a high-level BI system that would provide the added features that our customers required to track patient information and deliver various reports for compliance purposes.”
CareMedic began searching for a BI solution that would help customers to run dashboards and key performance indicators (KPIs) in order to evaluate their current level of business, give them the ability and flexibility to slice and dice information for analysis and access a variety of “canned” reports on a weekly and/or monthly basis. Functionality, pricing, and ease of use were also key factors in the selection process, as was the amount of data the solution could handle. “With large hospital systems, we’re talking about millions of rows of data that need to be aggregated and presented back on a daily basis. We needed to select and integrate a solution that could handle that massive amount of data, without a hitch,” adds McGuire.
After evaluating several industry solutions, including SAP Business Objects’ BI product, CareMedic selected IBM® Cognos® BI in 2008. Working with a development company,
GlowTouch Technologies, the company’s IT team implemented the IBM Cognos solution to deliver the reporting functionality on top of its revenue cycle workflow solution. Customers buy the eFR product and then pay a monthly subscription to CareMedic to use an IBM Cognos BI license. The integrated solution rolled out to the first customer site in January 2009.
“The initial IBM Cognos BI deployment was very successful,” says McGuire. “The product was flexible enough that we could seamlessly create reports based on input from managers within the revenue cycle, deliver them to the CFOs and then easily modify them based on their feedback. Already, we’ve developed 25 different KPIs for this particular
customer, with plans to create additional KPIs in the near term.”
Immediately following the first customer deployment, CareMedic rolled out the integrated package to 10 additional customer sites that were already using the CareMedic workflow
tool. To date, there are 100 users at CareMedic customer sites using the IBM Cognos BI solution. And, with a goal of extending the offering to more customers, the company
anticipates that user numbers will double during the next 12-18 months.
Using IBM Cognos 8 BI, CareMedic was able to enhance its existing software offering, enable customers to do more in-depth analysis of operations and revenue cycle data, and help them to better understand KPIs such as cash, denials, and productivity. At a large number of customer sites, everyone – from managers and directors, up to VPs and CFOs – are using the tool to access real-time information regarding their hospital’s revenue cycle process. And this helps them make wellinformed business decisions.
Furthermore, by using the IBM Cognos BI solution, CareMedic has cut down on the time and resources needed to run reports for customers. For example, prior to using IBM Cognos
BI, it could take days – if not weeks – to aggregate data and respond to a customer’s request for a report. Now, reports can be automatically created on a nightly basis and delivered in an easily readable snapshot format to users the next morning.
In addition to extending the IBM Cognos BI solution to existing and new revenue workflow customers in the near future, CareMedic also plans to integrate the BI tool into some of its other offerings. For example, CareMedic also delivers a remittance tool that can turn paper-based remittances into an 835 Electronic Remittance Advice (ERA) file, the standard healthcare file for posting into a patient accounting system. With the new solution that includes the IBM Cognos BI with the remittance tool, CareMedic customers will be able to build a data repository off of that data set to see denials, payments, and adjustments.
“Our business thrives on customer retention and satisfaction and, by integrating IBM Cognos BI into our existing environment, we’ve made a lot of customers very happy,” says
McGuire. “Our offering combines revenue workflow and reporting capabilities, which provides a unique level of data access and reporting – something that positions us very well against the competition.”
About IBM Cognos BI and Performance Management
IBM Cognos business intelligence (BI) and performance management solutions deliver world-leading enterprise planning, consolidation and BI software, support and services to help companies plan, understand and manage financial and operational performance. IBM Cognos solutions bring together technology, analytical applications, best practices, and a broad network of partners to give customers an open, adaptive and complete performance solution. Over 23,000 customers in more than 135 countries around the world choose IBM Cognos solutions.
Products and services used
IBM products and services that were used in this case study.
Cognos 8 Business Intelligence
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