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The U.S. Healthcare Industry: By the Numbers

Posted by Ron Stephenson

Jun 28, 2016 12:30:00 PM

Healthcare industryNumbers are a part of our everyday life. Whether we are working on a business budget or trying to remember one of our multiple pin numbers, our brains process a lot of numerical information. In this blog, we’re taking a look at some numbers that describe the state of healthcare in the United States.

Costs of Healthcare:

  • The U.S. is ranked as the #1 country in terms of total health expenditure per capita.
  • The annual revenue total for the healthcare industry is an estimated $1.668 trillion.
  • Hospitals provided $46.4 billion in uncompensated care in 2013.
  • Approximately $4.1 billion in healthcare costs have been saved by hospitals’ improvements in patient safety.
  • Of the $2.7 trillion the country spends annually on healthcare, $400 billion go to claims processing, payments, billing, revenue cycle management and bad debt.

Cost Cutting Measures and Cost Cutting Opportunities:

  • The Council for Affordable Quality Healthcare estimates that through additional conversions from manual to electronic transactions, the healthcare industry can save about $8.1 billion annually, including $6.7 billion in savings for healthcare providers and $1.4 billion for health plans.
  • A majority of hospitals — 78% — have evidence of unnecessary antibiotic combinations being administered for two or more days, resulting in potentially avoidable healthcare costs of nearly $13 million.
  • According to data from the Center for Health Information and Analysis, the estimated annual cost of preventable hospital admissions for Medicare is $26 billion annually of which $17 billion is considered avoidable.
  • More than 250,000 deaths per year are due to medical errors.
  • Emergency department visits have increased by nearly 19% over the past decade.

EMR Adoption:

  • More than 83% of U.S. physicians have adopted EHR systems.
  • From 2008 to 2014, EHR adoption in hospitals rose 66.1%. More than 75% of all hospitals use at least a basic EHR.
  • By the end of 2014, about half (51%) of office-based physicians had adopted a 'Basic EHR.’
  • More than 8 in 10 physicians report their EHRs enable them to utilize CPOE, record clinical notes, document patient medications, document allergies and view laboratory results.
  • Since the passage in 2009 of the HITECH Act, nearly 7 in 10 physicians e-prescribe through an EHR.
  • As of January 2016, 87% of Regional Extension Centers (REC) enrolled Critical Access/Rural Hospitals are demonstrating meaningful use of certified EHR technology.
  • As of February 2015, over 9 in 10 hospitals eligible for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Program had achieved meaningful use of certified health IT.
  • The majority of office-based physicians with electronic health records report their EHRs had clinical, efficiency and financial benefits for their practice.
  • The national readmission rate fell to 17.5% in 2013 after staying around 19-19.5% for multiple years.
  • As of 2014, 80% of non-federal acute care hospitals have the capability to electronically query patient health information from external sources, resulting in a more than 30% increase from 2013.

Healthcare Growth and Future:

Data Security and Growth:

  • Approximately 35% of reported data breaches in 2015 were in the healthcare industry.
  • At least 38% of consumers would be wary of using a hospital that has been hacked.   
  • More than 40% of health executives say their organization’s data volume has grown more than 50% in one year.
  • Approximately 4 in 10 hospitals (41%) report that providers at the hospital are able to send and receive secure electronic messages containing patient health information to and from sources outside of the organization or hospital system.
  • Although not all hospitals currently exchanging data are members of HIE networks, 78% reported exchanging patient information in some format in 2014.

Learn More

While the vast amount of numbers and information in the healthcare industry can be confusing, your healthcare data doesn’t have to be. Our certified consultants can help you sift through your data to make it work for you – clinically, financially and operationally. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.

If you’re interested in learning more about how your healthcare facility can make the most of your data, Syntrix Consulting Group can help bring dashboard & insightful analytics to your staff. Download our FREE eBook “7 Steps to a Successful Epic Implementation” today:

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Topics: Healthcare Analytics

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