More Healthcare Organizations Using Automation, But Size Matters

More hospitals and health systems are incorporating technology that automates tasks into their operations, but the amount of automation being deployed within an organization appears to be tied to the amount of revenue being generated by the company, according to a survey of healthcare financial managers.

Overall, about 67% of hospitals and health systems have implemented automation into their revenue cycle management operation, according to the results of the survey, which was commissioned by Alpha Health and conducted through the Healthcare Financial Management Association. Thirty percent are not using automation and 3% have stopped using it, according to the survey results.

Health systems are more likely to have implemented automation technology, compared with hospitals — 77% to 63%.

Perhaps the most interesting data point in the survey was the correlation between deployment of automation and an organization’s net revenue. More than 83% of hospitals and health systems that earn in excess of $10 billion in annual revenue have deployed automation, compared with 36% of hospitals and health systems that earn less than $500 million in annual revenue. Sixty-four percent of organizations earning between $500 million and $1 billion have done so, as have 79% of hospitals and health systems earning between $1 billion and $10 billion.

“Automation in the healthcare revenue cycle is no longer an aspirational element of digital transformation efforts  — it has become standard practice for the majority of health systems and hospitals,” said Malinka Walaliyadde, co-.founder and CEO of Alpha Health, in a statement. “COVID-19 has placed many healthcare organizations under intense cash-flow pressure and created volatile claim volumes and workloads for revenue cycle teams. These dynamics are driving more revenue cycle leaders to look to automation to provide flexibility and resiliency in their operations while minimizing their organization’s cost to collect.” 

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