Value (Business Strategy and Financial Management)

ePoster Presentations

EP-150 - Protect and Incent = a Provider-Based Approach to Creating Telehealth Value

Monday, April 30
9:35 AM - 9:50 AM
Location: Education Zone, Booth 2416, Screen 5

Most experts agree that the use of interactive digital technology to facilitate health care has passed its proverbial inflection point, and the only question that remains is "how widespread will telehealth become?" Yet, one significant cause of turbulence along telehealth's ascent remains the complicated interplay of workload, lifestyle, and compensation of telehealth providers. (In fact, there was no direct mention of "provider" on the referenced 2018 list of 51 ATA Key Topics!).
Provider engagement is critical in the success of a telehealth, particularly as part of a large healthcare system initiative. Without the buy-in of the practicing physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, social workers, and counselors, the first and lasting impressions to the patient and family are at risk. The appropriate conversion of a strong "bedside manner" to a similar "webside manner" depends on it. At minimum, busy clinicians envision telehealth as a neutral change to their modus operandi (i.e. protection). Ideally, they find it an improvement by creating more proficiency, efficiency and/or revenue (i.e. incentives). Thus, we follow the mantra to "protect and incent" providers in order bring champions to a telehealth program.
Specific "protect and incent" strategies are culturally-specific to the healthcare system in which they are employed. For example, when providers are part of a protected, non-incentivized, capitated salary structure, then trickling incentivized revenue down to the providers may not be necessary. But maintenance/reduction or expected workload with maintenance/improvement of lifestyle will be more important in this situation. Conversely, in an RVU or billable working model, incentivized pay may be essential.
During the ePoster presentation, we will demonstrate how to create a 2 X 3 grid: with protect and incent along the x-axis, and workload, lifestyle, and compensation along the y-axis. This will demonstrate the value of this provider strategy exercise that should accompany any new telehealth offering. An early understanding of the potential motivations and deterrents to provider participation will become apparent via real life examples from the authors' programs as well as comparative national and regional programs. Specific examples will include telestroke, telepsychiatry, teleICU, direct-to-consumer primary/urgent care visits, direct-to-consumer specialty care visits, and virtual 2nd opinions.
With careful consideration and a sophisticated understanding of added value from telehealth programs, healthcare administrators appreciate how critical it is to protect and incent their provider champions.

Learning Objectives:

David J. Houghton

Medical Director, CareConnect 360 (Telehealth)
Ochsner Health System

David J. Houghton, M.D., M.P.H. earned his Medical Degree from Medical College of Georgia and his Masters in Public Health in epidemiology at Emory University. He completed his internship and residency in neurology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Fellowship training was subsequently received at the Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders Center at Pennsylvania Hospital. Prior to joining Ochsner, he was an Assistant Professor and Neurology Residency Program Director at the University of Louisville.

Dr. Houghton joined the staff at Ochsner Health System as Chief of the Division of Movement Disorders. His publications have appeared in peer-reviewed journals, an online medical text, a patient resource from the National Parkinson’s Foundation, and a textbook on deep brain stimulation (DBS) for Parkinson’s disease. His interests include all aspects of movement disorders, including DBS and botulinum toxin injections, with particular attention to research trials and interdisciplinary clinics. Most recently, he is also the Medical Director for Ochsner CareConnect 360 - one of the fastest growing networks of hospital, clinic, and direct-to-consumer telehealth in the country.


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EP-150 - Protect and Incent = a Provider-Based Approach to Creating Telehealth Value

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