#JoinTheConversation with Experian Health’s Kathleen Harris at #HIMSS17
This #JoinTheConversation series is brought to you by our partner Experian Health and the episodes were broadcast live in Experian Health’s booth (#3503) at the The HIMSS17 Annual Conference and Exhibition. The interviews were recorded and published to the media player on this page. Please read more about why more than 60% of U.S. hospitals count on Experian Health.
Kathleen Harris, SVP Products and Analytics, Experian Health
Joe Lavelle 00:31 All right, welcome to our Join the Conversation show live from HIMSS17. I am Joe Lavelle and I’m here with my co-host Todd Eury in our remote studio right here in the Experian Health booth, we’re learning so much. Todd, let’s give a quick shout out to today’s sponsor Experian Health, what a great partner they are.
Todd Eury 00:47 What a buzz, I mean Experian Health has recently named to Forbes Magazine list of world’s most innovative companies securing a spot in the Top 100 List for the third year in a row. Recognition like this affirms their goal to innovating ways to embrace data to help transform the way business operate and how consumers can thrive in today’s society. What a thrill it is to learn about this organization and working with them today Joe, I’m excited.
Joe Lavelle 01:17 I’m so excited, but we’re going to get right to it today. Todd, we’re going to introduce our distinguish guest, Kathleen Harris, Senior Vice President, Product and Analytics of Experian Health. Be careful Kathleen, we are data nerds and welcome to the show!
Kathleen Harris 01:30 Thank you for having me.
Joe Lavelle 01:31 Oh, thanks so much for making the time while you’re so busy here at HIMSS. Before we start our discussion, could you take a few seconds and just tell the audience about you and your background?
Kathleen Harris 01:40 Well, I’ve been involved in healthcare IT and revenue cycle for all of my career, 25 plus years.
Joe Lavelle 01:48 Perfect. And now could you give us a 10,000 foot overview of what your team does at Experian Health?
Kathleen Harris 01:54 I have responsibility for our data and analytics team within Experian Health and we have a couple of different roles there. One is taking all of the transactional and workflow data that we produce from our 50 plus products, and combining it such that we can leverage that data to do reporting and analytics for our customers.
Joe Lavelle 02:16 Perfect. Todd, you’re the data nerd. I know you got a lot to ask Kathleen.
Todd Eury 02:18 Yeah, I know. I’m just going to jump right in and I’ll tell you what. So when I think of companies, especially in health care using data, I really want to shift gears back to the subject of security. Will you talk about your core expertise in data security, identity management and data quality and what an executive would need to know about Experian’s capabilities in these areas?
Kathleen Harris 02:42 Well, I think I’d start with saying Experian as a company has been in the data business for decades, one, and in a very highly regulated area when you think about credit data, security and compliance with rules are central to everything that we do. That’s A, that’s security piece. The quality we also obviously to be able to do what we do on both the Experian side and in the health side to look at data that has private health information and protected information in to we have to follow the very strict protocols to ensure that privacy is upheld for our customers.
And we use Experian broader experience data quality tools to ensure that we’re maintaining the quality and accuracy of the data that we’re combining. What we’re doing across our data is using our identity capabilities to link patient accounts among providers and within a provider. So we get transactional data like I mentioned it from about 50 products and the inconsistency even within the health system of that unique identifier is something that needs to be solved, a problem needs to be solve and it’s even greater when you go among providers that are from despair health systems or physicians or hospitals. So we use that identity capability, again something that we leverage from broader Experian and bring into the health to accurately identify the patients and match their accounts among providers.
Joe Lavelle 04:11 Kathleen, we’ve known Experian for years as that company that has vast information about consumers as you mentioned, what other ways are you leveraging that vast expertise in Healthcare?
Kathleen Harris 04:22 Well, I think what I just mentioned in the identity and creating a unique identifier within healthcare is huge, it’s something that we’ve needed for a really long time.
Joe Lavelle 04:32 Yeah and not only have we needed for a long time, but it’s right there in our face now that everything’s electronic, all the medical records are electronic. Back when we used to identify patients and then have to go to the file room it was one thing. They were all electronic and we’ve seen, we have people on our show say that people have up to 12% duplicates in their medical record system that’s just, it’s not workable.
Kathleen Harris 04:55 Yeah, it’s a real safety problem when you think about having duplicate medical records and a doctor making an order on the wrong patient or vice versa not getting a patient what they need.
Joe Lavelle 05:06 And there’s all kinds of challenges that create those duplicate medical records. We just talked with Frank Abagnale. Sometimes that’s created because a patient lies and they want to get free services under somebody else’s medical record and being able to uniquely identify each patient is vital. I think one of the most vital things we have to do in the next couple years is fix that problem now that we have in medical records.
Todd Eury 05:29 Kathleen, I can’t help but to think of the pharmacy side of this and how pharmacy takes therapy to the actual workable systems that are in place for medication therapy management to take over where the position kicked the ball off to the pharmacist or to the next specialist provider. From a data perspective what are some other ways that our audience and listeners would be surprised of how you’re helping healthcare providers, and in my case I’m selfish because I come from that pharmacy background, but how are you helping efficacy, pharmacogenomics, polypharmacy, poly conditions, chronic condition with all this data and analytics that you have?
Kathleen Harris 06:11 Well, if you think about the pharmacy side, one of the big problems right now is an opioid abuse and there’s lots of state regulations around making sure that the pharmacies are coordinating. But if the patient is using different identities and there’s no way that you can identify them as the same person, then it’s hard to catch. The best efforts by doctors and or pharmacies to try to control that, they don’t know where the patient just has been and I think the unique identifier contributes to be able to log where that patients receiving care, where they’re getting prescriptions, where they’re getting filled etc.
Todd Eury 06:44 I was talking with Experian Health team members before the interviews started and that’s exactly what we were talking about is being able to splice update a specific for the disease of addiction and what that’s done to our country, so definitely want to learn more about that in the coming months.
Joe Lavelle 07:00 Absolutely, could you maybe walk us through how your offerings work? How does a provider engage with you? Do you add workflow tools, analytic tools both?
Kathleen Harris 07:11 We do both. Our history is in the workflow and transactional tools. And so what we’ve done with our analytics solution is taking the data from those transactions and workflow tools and combined them and match them by a unique identifier as I mentioned. So one of the things that I think that is unique for all of us is that not only can we do the analysis push the report to you, benchmark you among 3,500 hospitals, half a million providers roughly, but we can also tie that analytical capability to a workflow capability. So you’ve got a problem here operationally or you’ve got a problem here financially, you’re not completing this process, push the information to the people that need it, to start making corrective changes.
Our analytics solution is really based around helping our customers optimize the use of our workflow and transactional tools such that they’re getting the best ROI possible.
Joe Lavelle 08:04 Great and so do you wrap around their revenue cycle systems and their EMR system, do you replace how does that work?
Kathleen Harris 08:12 There EHR and patient accounting systems that’s primarily the areas that we interface with, they’re interfaced. So they would, in the industry called both on solutions. We work with, we don’t replace them. So we’re pushing activities or suggestions how to change an activity or a workflow back to them and whether they’re completing it and say for example, in Epic or in our tools, they’re integrated.
Joe Lavelle 08:37 Great. Todd, I’m sorry if I’m monopolizing here, but I’m just rivoted. If you were to give an elevator speech, you bumped into the perfect customer in the elevator over here at HIMSS, what would you say, our solutions are great because?
Kathleen Harris 08:53 Well, given the people that attend HIMSS, they’re interested in a data security, data quality, accuracy, use this huge investment that they’ve made into systems. Making sure that they’re optimizing how they’re used and they are getting the operational efficiency and financial efficiency and they need to come to us to have the tools to make sure that they’re optimizing them.
Joe Lavelle 09:15 Perfect, perfectly said and thank you for that.
Todd Eury 09:17 So when I think of health systems, hospital systems, networks, PBM’s, insurance providers all working together, they really haven’t work together very well and I’m thinking what Experian is bringing to the table, what’s your background was in the financial sector, (it) makes sense, that you have entered the healthcare space and being able to dominate it with the way that you’ve secured data in the past and what health systems and PBM’s look for, for security in the world of healthcare. So with that, how are you going to build I don’t know API’s or whatever it is, in order to take data from an electronic health record into another system and then pass information back again with kind of the Experian Health touch?
Kathleen Harris 10:01 Well, there’s one, identity as a key factor to that right, using our unique identifier to make sure that that patient is accurately identified across systems, that’s one key area. We’ve also built our solutions to work in all those environments that you just mentioned, so that we are integrated in those environments. And I think the thing that is particularly unique about Experian is our consumer focus. And when you think about the consumerization of healthcare from not only accessing services, but paying for services, the ability to work with consumers and manage consumer data and integrate it back into those more institutional compeonents that you were describing is, it puts the patient at the center of interoperability and that’s where it belongs in my opinion.
Joe Lavelle 10:48 Amen, sister. Let’s say that again, puts the patient at the center of the interoperability, that’s right! Heath systems are looking at, they own our data, and if I have been to four health systems they all own my data. I don’t have a complete medical records because I have to cobblie the records together myself and the only way to fix that is to put the patient where we own the data, so thank you for saying that and letting me jump on the soap box with you Kathleen.
Kathleen Harris 11:14 It’s my favorite soap box by the way.
Joe Lavelle 11:17 All right, I hope there’s room, I know there’s room for at least a few more of us. What are your top couple of goals when you come into a big show like HIMSS?
Kathleen Harris 11:24 That’s a really good question. I think meeting our clients and/or future clients and understanding what’s on the top of their mind, what their goals are. To do it when you’re going out to a provider it’s one at a time, but being in a collective situation where they’re sharing ideas together and even just seeing what sessions they are attending and things like that, that’s one. The other is, I like coming to HIMSS because there’s so much innovation going on in all these booths and to see what’s going on in the industry just make sure that we’re out front and also learning and working with other companies that are available to us.
Joe Lavelle 12:05 Perfect, Kathleen it looks like we’re running up against the clock, before we let you go. Where can people go to contact you and learn more about what your team is doing at Experian Health?
Kathleen Harris 12:13 www.experianhealth.com
Joe Lavelle 12:14 Perfect. Kathleen, it was such a pleasure to have you. Thanks for making the time.
Kathleen Harris 12:18 Thank you for having me.
Joe Lavelle 12:21 Perfect, that wraps our live broadcast from HIMSS, we want again shout out a quick thanks to our sponsor, Experian Health, what a great partner they are. And on behalf of Kathleen Harris, my co-host Todd Eury, I’m Joe Lavelle. We hope you stay tuned for more of our great “Join the Conversation” coverage here from Orlando.
About Experian Health
More than 60% of U.S. hospitals count on Experian Health. These providers—along with thousands of medical practices, labs, pharmacies and other risk-bearing entities—are making smarter business decisions, boosting their bottom lines and strengthening patient relationships. Our clients have discovered the value of our revenue cycle management, identity management, patient engagement and care management solutions to power opportunities in the new era of value-based reimbursement.
Experian Health is powered by the strong healthcare heritage of our legacy companies, plus the deep data and analytics capabilities of Experian. This unique combination positions us well to help you succeed.
Revenue cycle management solutions automate orders, patient access, contract management, claims management and collections to improve efficiency and increase reimbursement.
Identity management solutions match, manage, and protect patient identities to enable accurate patient information and to safeguard medical information.
Patient engagement solutions connect patients with personalized portals to create price estimates, apply for charity care, set-up payment plans, combine payments to hospitals and physicians and schedule appointments.
Care management solutions organize and enable sharing of post-acute patient care information to help providers succeed in the new era of value-based reimbursement.