Blog Posts

The role of accurate data and coding in hospitals

by Rodianne Degabriele Ferriggi, Marketing Executive, 6PM Group

How The Internet Of Things Will Impact Healthcare

Accurate data quality and clinical coding in the healthcare sector has never been as important as it is today. Apart from ensuring each health care trust is paid accurately for its clinical activity by a system of payment by results, it also links to the quality of data, safety of patients and ensures the best clinical performance.

Patients’ safety is crucial for every hospital following the core standards for better health. The right clinical coding ensures that hospitals have the correct information on each and every patient. This will allow clinicians to have access to error-free quality data to take an informed decision and determine the best way forward for every patient. Clinical coding is also linked to operational processes, this to ensure that performance and efficiency are in line with the hospitals goals. Nevertheless, accurate coding audits will provide a hospital with a five-year forward view, to be used to plan ahead for providing the best service possible and plan for future developments.

Getting good quality clinical coding is fundamental

Poor quality clinical coding of diagnosis and procedure causes problems with the design of currencies, accurate cost data and accurate payments. The understanding of clinical coding and the background to this amongst clinicians, in particular, junior doctors, is extremely poor. For clinical coding to improve, clinicians must understand the significance of clinical coding and why it is absolutely crucial that improvements are made.

Findings from the 2014/15 payment and tariff assurance framework

The sector regulator for health services in England, Monitor has published the findings from the 2014/15 payment and tariff assurance framework, delivered by CHKS, part of Capita Health Partners. The findings show that nearly half of trusts (49%) had inaccurate reference costs submissions. Reference costs are an annual return completed by every NHS provider, which are used by Monitor to determine the national tariff paid hospital care. They found that many trusts that fell into the medium risk category were not undertaking the detailed work necessary to produce accurate cost information. Where trusts used cost information to inform decision making, the reference costs submission were more liable to be correct.

Adding measurable value to hospitals with Javali

Javali is the technology that utilises advanced text searching and data aggregation to improve comorbidity coding and ensure all inpatient procedures are recorded correctly. It automatically scans and aggregates all data associated with an individual inpatient encounter and, via text-based searches, assists coders in identifying missed and under-coded CCs and MCCs. This all takes place automatically overnight. Over the past 6 months Javali has been refined, making the solution able to significantly increase medical record quality and improve the mortality index (SHMI) through improved complication and comorbidity coding. Until now Javali has been able to identify a consistent 6% of inpatient consultant episodes across various trusts. 

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