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Scary Financial Challenges for 2014

Rene Letourneau, for HealthLeaders Media, December 9, 2013

Healthcare finance leaders see scary financial challenges ahead in 2014 around declining reimbursements, health insurance exchanges, and high-deductible health plans.

As senior healthcare leaders look ahead to 2014, they foresee big financial challenges as healthcare reform rolls out, new reimbursement models come into play, and collecting full payment for services rendered becomes even harder.

Michael Hulefeld, executive vice president and COO of New Orleans-based Ochsner Health System, says one of his main concerns is new payment models that threaten revenue.

"Obviously the declining reimbursements model coupled with an overall decline in utilization is putting a lot of pressure on providers," he says.

Ochsner is being proactive in its efforts to prepare for new reimbursement structures, Hulefeld says.

"In terms of how we are going to deal with these issues, we've got a lot of teams in place right now focused on how we can reduce the cost of care while at the same time improving patient outcomes and quality," he says. "For example, we are looking at DRG by DRG to try to redesign how we provide patient care, and we feel that we have got to reduce costs by 15% to 20%. We are very focused on clinical redesign at this stage."

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