It was personal experience with her mother’s recovery from cancer surgery, her father-in-law’s quadruple bypass surgery and her mother-in-law’s stroke rehabilitation that demonstrated to Pamela Pure, the former president of McKesson Technology Solutions – a healthcare information technology and services provider – how badly electronic medical records software was needed to automate and connect post-acute care facilities.
While researching this niche, she met the three men who founded HealthMEDX in 1999 – CEO Jim Atteberry, Chief Technology Officer Dan Cobb and President Charlie Daniels. “We were looking for a single, patient-centric record that could support all segments of the post-acute market – skilled nursing, assisted living, therapy, home care, adult day care and hospice,” Pure says. “That’s what we found with the HealthMEDX Vision Solution.” Now HealthMEDX CEO, Pure ended up joining the company when Trident Equity and Spectrum Capital acquired the business.
“We automate the long-term post-acute care environment,” Pure explains. “That is, skilled nursing homes, assisted living, independent senior living, homecare, hospice or therapy. We are also focused on transitional care facilities, which typically care for patients for 14 to 21 days post-charge and work to accelerate recovery and reduce readmissions. Our systems are focused on key areas outside of the hospital and physician’s office. We enable care for seniors and other patients requiring ongoing support.”
Many software systems are designed just for one of those long-term post-acute care markets. “What HealthMEDX does is look at that environment horizontally,” Pure continues. “Our goal is to manage the patient once they’re out of the hospital or physician’s office and manage them through the rest of the care process. So our product does homecare, assisted living, skilled nursing and transitional care. Our customers – health systems and post-acute providers – use Vision, which provides a one-person-centric record to create and manage care across facilities.”
With the new HealthMEDX Exchange Connectivity Platform, the patient record even can be shared with the health system or physician driving care decisions. Certification of electronic medical records by the independent Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology (CCHIT) indicates that the records meet standardization criteria.
“We have a certified record that allows the hospital or physician’s office to send structured patient information to us electronically,” Pure explains. “We can assure a smooth, accurate patient transition and accelerate care delivery as patients are moved to skilled nursing or assisted living. We can simplify the work for the homecare or hospice provider by prepopulating the record.”
“It is clear that our post-acute customers need an electronic medical record as they manage regulatory change,” Pure says. “I’ve lived in the health system and physician IT world for 25-plus years, and I can honestly say I have never seen the type of regulations and volume of regulatory changes that are part of post-acute care management. In addition to these foundational requirements, post-acute providers are preparing to take on risk and negotiate more complex relationships with health systems and payers. As a result, they will need a financial system that supports these new payment schemes.”
Competitors of HealthMEDX typically offer software systems that travel vertically – automating a single provider group – such as homecare software or assisted-living vendors. The products automate locations, whereas HealthMEDX is delivering technology that automates the patient/resident’s plan of care and works across multiple locations and care settings.
With more than 3,000 healthcare locations and 72 terabytes of data it hosts for them, Pure considers HealthMEDX a differentiated leader in long-term post-acute care software. HealthMEDX markets to medium to large long-term post-acute care facilities with at least 50 beds as well as health systems, which increasingly are becoming responsible for the full spectrum of care delivery, from hospital to post-acute care facility.
“We have traditionally sold to post-acute providers,” she says. “We recently expanded our work to health systems and focus on connecting these large organizations with post-acute providers to facilitate coordinated care.”
As an example of how healthcare is changing, Pure notes that one very progressive post-acute provider is working diligently to move emergency room patients to the most appropriate care setting. Today, this skilled nursing facility is admitting pneumonia patients directly from the hospital’s emergency room. It is well-equipped to manage pneumonia and provides a much less expensive setting for the care required.
“So I see these long-term post-acute organizations providing more care and becoming a real alternative care setting, minimizing the time patients must spend in the hospital,” Pure predicts. “I think over time, people are going to look at ways to deploy their skilled nursing facility assets more effectively while organizing to provide additional home-based services. We are confident that HealthMEDX is positioned to facilitate the change.”