Impact Insights

Week in Review 1/23/15

CMS administrator Marilyn Tavenner announced she will step down at the end of February. Principal Deputy Administrator Andy Slavitt will replace Tavenner until a permanent replacement is found. Tavenner was named acting CMS administrator in 2011, and was formally confirmed as CMS administrator in 2013.

Impact Advisors’ Thoughts: In healthcare IT circles there will certainly be speculation around whether Tavenner’s resignation will have an impact on the ICD-10 deadline, and to a lesser degree, Meaningful Use reporting periods in 2015. Our guess is that it won’t. If a last minute change to either program is coming, we suspect it will be via Congressional action rather than through a decision from CMS.


An interesting article in Modern Healthcare finds that “most ACOs are still a long way from the holy grail of big-data analytics.” According to the story, many ACOs are “developing the capacity to track patients in real time when they go to the hospital or the ED” in an effort to intervene more quickly and thus improve outcomes. ACOs are in “sharply different stages” of collecting and effectively using patient data though. Smaller ACOs in particular are still trying to make effective use of the data they already have in their EHR.

Impact Advisors’ Thoughts: The story highlights a number of specific examples of ACOs and the analytics vendors they are working with. If anything, the examples underscore the fact that there really are a number of different approaches to analytics and population health in use today. Highly recommended reading!