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Salesforce Health Cloud Improves Mount Sinai Medicaid Program

Mount Sinai Health System chose Salesforce Health Cloud to better connect its many locations and improve patient care.

Source: Thinkstock

By Elizabeth O'Dowd

- Mount Sinai Health System chose Salesforce Health Cloud to coordinate and manage the care of Medicaid recipients in its Performing Provider System (PPS).

Mount Sinai PPS was formed back in 2015 under New York State’s Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment Program (DSRIP) to rework the organization’s Medicaid program. The program focuses on reducing avoidable hospital use by reaching out to and treating New York City’s most vulnerable populations.

Mount Sinai hopes to reduce avoidable hospital use by 25 percent over the next five years.

"Too often, we see patients delay their care and end up in the emergency room, which is both difficult for the patient and costly for taxpayers," Mount Sinai Health System IT Department Vice President Kash Patel said in a statement. "With the right technology, in the hands of the right people, we can break this cycle and help Medicaid patients get quality care, while reducing high-cost and avoidable emergency room visits."

Mount Sinai PPS includes more than 10,000 Medicaid service providers and 200 community organizations. The organization consists of large hospitals, private medical practices, nursing homes, and substance abuse centers.

The size of the organization presented a challenge when it came to connecting providers and their health IT infrastructures across the ecosystem. Clinicians were having trouble gathering all the needed patient information because health IT systems between different facilities were not connected and sharing information.

The health system contains both primary care and specialists. Primary care physicians sending patients to specialists within the same health system would still not be able to access the most updated information on the patient because of the lack of connectivity. To treat patients better, clinicians need access to a patient’s full medical history, including treatments and medications.

Salesforce hopes to assist Mount Sinai with this challenge by streamlining the process. The healthcare organization is using Health Cloud and Community Cloud to establish a mobile, real-time care coordination among the health system.

In the official press release, Salesforce gave the example of patients taking medication incorrectly. If a patient fails to take a medication at the right frequency, a doctor might see that as the medication not working and a case manager might only see the patient’s lack of cooperation. This results in a disconnected view of the situation, which can lead to misdiagnosis and wasted time, expending valuable resources.

By implementing Health Cloud, all parties get a complete and up-to-date view of the patient’s medical history. This keeps clinicians and patients on track, preventing unnecessary trips to the emergency room.

"With Salesforce, Mount Sinai is arming thousands of Medicaid providers and community organizations with a more precise view of the demographics, lifestyle and health histories of patients," Salesforce Chief Medical Officer Dr. Joshua Newman said in a statement. "As a result, they'll be able to collaborate more closely and put their patients at the center of care."

Cloud computing has become a critical tool for healthcare organizations over the past several years. The HIMSS Analytics 2016 Cloud Survey cited the strategic benefits of the cloud cancel out previous security reservations. HIMSS analysts predicted that cloud will become a mission-critical tool for all healthcare IT infrastructure incentives.

Healthcare organizations use cloud solutions for many aspects of health IT infrastructure because it gives them the flexibility and scalability needed to grow. It also helps save money on hardware and the expenses that come along with managing hardware.

Software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions, such as Salesforce, give organizations the opportunity the streamline operations in a way that is unique to each organizations’ needs, while not requiring IT staff to constantly monitor and maintain the solution.