CHICAGO - Citing mounting health care costs, electronic note bloat, and concerns with the quality and quality of Big Data, IBM, Apple, and EPIC Systems recently announced a new initiative to totally revamp US health care by offering health care services by data plan. The health care initiative was recently discovered in a little known section of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) that changed portions of the U.S. Tax Code.
Under the new system, the brainchild of prominent Chicago physician-turned-health care entrepreneur Henry Throckmorton, MD, patients will purchase an initial 250 megabytes of data space on the EMR for all their health needs for $250 per month. “It’s cheaper than most current cell phone service," Throckmorton explained. "When patients exceed their data allotment, health care ceases until patients purchase an additional data storage plan." Expansion data plans come in Bronze (250 M Bytes), Silver (500 Mbytes), Gold (5 G Byte), and Platinum (10 GB) storage increments.
Rollover plans for family members are also offered for those nearing the end of life.
“Health care systems that promise to limit the use of macros, dot phrases and cut-and-paste tactices have a real competetive advantage over competitors insensitive to the patient's data needs!” Throckmorton explained. "This system finally puts health care incentives in the right place.”
But Roger Wilco, spokesperson for America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), the national trade association representing the health insurance industry, seemed less enthusiastic. "This is preposterous! Who do these flowery internet types think they are? Don't they realize there are advantages to more middle men in health care? How are we supposed to get our cut of the money?"
Dr. I.P. Knightly of Urocare Health System in Beaverton, New York, seemed less concerned about the middlemen and appreciated the improvements he's seen in patient care: “Because I document everything on the EMR, including phone calls, results and work schedules, patient are less likely to call so I get a good night’s sleep!”
Nursing and medical students seem torn, however. While some see benefits to shorter notes, some like Tim Allen, MD, a hard-working fourth-year medical student from Roanoke, VA, sees other challenges “I’m still trying to understand ortho notes that no longer contain the critical information fields like the patient’s full name, VIP status, research status, and a complete review of systems. How's a guy supposed to understand what ‘Silt @ t/s/s/sp/dp’ means?”
Market analyst Rebecca Solomon of Lock, Stock and Barrel Equity Partners noted "Apple, IBM and EPIC are quickly gaining market share from more conventional insurance policies. The concept has also resonated with the Department of Health and Human Services because of the cost savings seen from fewer data-hungry imaging studies being ordered."
Mobile partnerships with AT&T, Verizon, and T-mobile are planned in the next fiscal year.
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P.S.: If you thought this press release might be real, even for a second, consider why.