NextGen – Scott Decker

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Eric Fishman with EHR TV speaking with Scott Decker, President of NextGen.

Category: Featured, HIMSS11
Date: March 2, 2011
Views:6,342 views

Dr. Eric Fishman: This is Eric Fishman with EHR TV and today we are speaking with Scott Decker, President of NextGen. NextGen has had a phenomenal year and Scott congratulations on the meaningful use activities that you have done and everything else that happened to the group. We are going to cover a lot of ground here. Maybe we can start with the ACOs, the Accountable Care Organizations, and that’s obviously an important issue for you.

Scott Decker: Sure, right. You know, I can't go to a client today on the market tomorrow and not talk about ACOs. So, I think across the board our large health system clients are trying to figure out how do they position to be an ACO. Clearly, a large part of that strategy is connecting with physicians in the market and getting them all tied together so they can share the data and do things they need to do. You know, the flip side of ACO is related to patient-centered medical home and so the ACO is the health system conversation and patient-centered medical home is in the physician practices, and just like there equal amount of attention and focus on how can they prepare and what kind of tools do they need to play in that market.

Dr. Eric Fishman: And what tools and utilities does NextGen have to get your physicians to communicate with their patients?

Scott Decker: Right. Well, partly it's communicating with the patients but probably for the ACO and patient-centered medical home it’s more of how do you really manage your patients on an accountable process across all different specialties and all the different physicians they go to. So, I say a lot more is the underpinnings of the software. Sure you need to communicate with the patients but it’s really how do you manage all that back-end data, how do you do disease management, how do you measure your diabetics across a lifetime of pair and that's new for most physicians.

Dr. Eric Fishman: I agree with that. How long will it be until physician payment will actually be modified based on the new parameters?

Scott Decker: Yeah. That’s what none of us felt and that’s what makes this exciting which is everybody wants to talk about ACO and patient-centered medical home but when it is ready, nobody knows what it is or what it is related to.

Dr. Eric Fishman: There are some changes in Washington coming soon announced recently. Will that affect NextGen’s plans at all?

Scott Decker: No, I think we will just stay in the course right now. I don't think we have seen anything materially changed that we would say we should speed or slow down anything we are doing. So, we are still full speed ahead on getting ready for meaningful use. We are starting to now talk about meaningful use stage 2 and then helping our clients getting ready for accountable care organizations and patient centered medical home.

Dr. Eric Fishman: And you recently acquired a hospital-based system, so you have grown from a large enterprise ambulatory expert to the entire continuum. When we spoke last time you were even reaching down to one in five-doctor practice with some ASP; how is that continuum working now?

Scott Decker: Well, I think it's the same story and it actually ties to the first part we are going to be talking about which is if I am going to manage an ACO, I need to manage inpatient and ambulatory data. I also need to worry about how do I get all my physicians in my market hooked up. So, being able to support those new markets really <> with that strategy where a lot of our clients are saying “We want to be able to provide an integrated product that’s doing great.”

Dr. Eric Fishman: Now, mobility. Everybody wants an iPad. How is the NextGen Mobile strategy coming?

Scott Decker: Well, in November. So, I guess since the last time we talked we did introduce our new mobile product that really builds across all devices – iPad, iPhone, across Android devices. So, we are getting great reception for that. We also introduced a new product called ePen which I would categorize in mobility products also which allows…

Dr. Eric Fishman: That’s the handwriting recognition…

Scott Decker: …Right for patients and/or for physicians.

Dr. Eric Fishman: Does it turn it into data?

Scott Decker: That's right. It actually captures it and you dock it and it populates discrete data which is hot button for us. We always want to make sure we are adding discrete data. So, some pretty neat new tools and technologies common for our clients.

Dr. Eric Fishman: I had mentioned I did a survey of some pediatricians and I was shocked that 70% of the survey responses that I got said that at least a portion of the time they typed their writings. How do you find your clients, your hospitals getting those records taken care of? Obviously, you have got the pen, you have got standard dictation…

Scott Decker: Right. So, I think even our most sophisticated clients who have done everything they possibly can to streamline the entry of data still end up having the type in some notes on occasion almost on every exam. So, usability is always how do you take it to the next level. The next level I think is all the things happening – mobility, voice, ePen – are just going to help our clients more and more over time.

Dr. Eric Fishman: What’s happening the next 12 months?

Scott Decker: Next 12 months, it’s a lot more of the same. So, for a lot of our clients it’s just a focus on how do we get our EHR up and running, how do deal with our meaningful use deadlines like we already talked about ACO and patient centered medical home, get us ready for that. So, that's enough to keep us busy.

Dr. Eric Fishman: What percentage of your clients do you think understand what they in for as far as ACO? Do you have an educational outreach program to tell them what's coming down the pipe to the extent that they can do it?

Scott Decker: Yeah. In a lot of respect, it’s similar to what we went through on meaningful use where we started the education process 24 months ago on that and at best we got them to where they needed to. I think it's the same thing on ACOs and patient centered medical home. It's a new concept. I mean, both internally for us we have to educate our employees and externally for the clients help – all come along on this together. So, a lot of outreach on that front. It is scary to me because I think there is a lot of people who think they are going to be an ACO or a patient centered medical home who have never managed risk before; and boy! that's a lot of change for a business and in a very short amount of time a lot more thinking. So, it's a little bit of work.

Dr. Eric Fishman: Maybe our last subject – regional extension centers.

Scott Decker: Sure.

Dr. Eric Fishman: I am sure you are involved in them. How to say this properly – have they been very helpful in educating their priority primary care physicians in getting them to understand what it is they are looking for, in your opinion?

Scott Decker: In my opinion, let’s say, I am hopeful they are still ramping up and haven’t quite hit their stride yet because there was a lot more expectation on their contribution to the market than we are seeing on a practical standpoint. I think we have gotten through about 60 RECs that made collections better. So, they are still on the ramp-up process. So, let's give it another year before we…

Dr. Eric Fishman: They are given a hard task but I feared comments of that nature…

Scott Decker: But so far not a lot of <>.

Dr. Eric Fishman: Anything else you want to tell us about NextGen?

Scott Decker: No, we are just keeping plugging away and I think we are heading in the right direction; we appreciate your support.

Dr. Eric Fishman: It’s Eric Fishman with Scott Decker, President of NextGen Healthcare. Thank you.

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