IBM > Case Studies > Transforming Healthcare Delivery: Bassett Healthcare Network's Journey with IBM Watson Health

Transforming Healthcare Delivery: Bassett Healthcare Network's Journey with IBM Watson Health

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Technology Category
  • Sensors - Level Sensors
Applicable Industries
  • Chemicals
  • Healthcare & Hospitals
Applicable Functions
  • Maintenance
  • Quality Assurance
Use Cases
  • Inventory Management
  • Visual Quality Detection
  • Testing & Certification
  • Training
About The Customer
Bassett Healthcare Network is a healthcare organization that serves a 5,600 square mile region in upstate New York. The network includes six hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, and other health centers. Bassett Medical Group, a part of the network, consists of more than 400 physicians and other clinicians. The organization has been experiencing rapid growth, with 43 clinicians hired over the past two years and physical expansion of six clinics. Bassett is navigating the complex transition from volume to value-based reimbursement and adopting population health management techniques as an important tool. The organization has teamed with IBM Watson Health to help accomplish their goals in this area.
The Challenge
Bassett Healthcare Network, a healthcare organization serving a 5,600 square mile region in upstate New York, was facing the complex transition from volume to value-based reimbursement. The organization recognized that its primary care network was a critical point in its strategy. Bassett Medical Group, consisting of over 400 physicians and clinicians, had experienced rapid growth with 43 clinicians hired over the past two years and physical expansion of six clinics. The organization aimed to drive volume to utilize existing capacity, support the pursuit of NCQA Patient-Centered Medical Home renewal recognition, foster overall population health management, and support clinical quality improvement initiatives. However, they needed the 'right volume', not just more. This meant targeting gaps in care, focusing on chronic needs in primary care, pediatrics, and women’s health such as depression, immunizations, and diabetes. Bassett knew that effective patient outreach and engagement was critical to achieve these goals.
The Solution
Bassett selected IBM’s Phytel Outreach, a core module of IBM’s extensive population health management suite, to help automate the care provider’s process of identifying patients who need recommended care and initiating customizable notifications regarding follow-up actions. The solution’s capability to support a wide range of care protocols was particularly attractive to Bassett, which decided to apply it to over 20 target conditions. Phytel Outreach integrates with an electronic medical record (EMR), financial or other information system. Bassett’s GE Centricity Business system feeds data to Phytel Outreach’s algorithms, which analyze patients against evidence-based guidelines and automatically generate an Outreach call. Bassett is also using Phytel Outreach to help meet strategic quality goals, notably National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) recognition program. The software was designed to meet specific PCMH elements and has been pre-validated by NCQA for autocredit, allowing users to bypass the NCQA documentation process for eligible elements.
Operational Impact
  • The implementation of Phytel Outreach has been smooth and rapid, beginning with a pilot group of 21 clinicians and expanding to 118. Bassett has been able to achieve patient engagement at a consistency and scale exceeding that of straight human intervention. The organization has also achieved the 'right volume' of patient care, with notable revenue gains coming from the pediatric population and patients between ages 50 and 69, as well as from preventive/wellness visits, asthma, and hypertension treatment. All of these interventions are crucial to population health management and are being reflected in improved quality metrics. Bassett has also actively cultivated patient acceptance, overcoming barriers such as patient preference for other methods of contact and varying population needs. The organization is now considering expansion of the program.
Quantitative Benefit
  • Physicians utilizing Phytel Outreach consistently measured high booking ratios, achieving mid to upper 90 percent ratios compared to mid-80s for non-users.
  • Phase two clinicians began at a lower ratio than their peers and surpassed them consistently within three months. After six months, this Phytel Outreach group was booking well over 200 additional monthly visits.
  • Total net collections attributable to Phytel Outreach patients were $1.2 million in less than a year, which the organization considers at least $400,000 greater than initial projections.

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