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Time, Money, and Lives Blog

Catherine Cole

Catherine Cole

Adventurer, Nerd, Foodie, Associate Product Manager, MBA, Dog Lover, Outdoor Enthusiast, Springboard Diver, and Avid (though not very good) Golfer

Recent Posts by Catherine Cole:

Mandatory Cancer Reporting in California Begins January 1, 2019

The benefits of big data in healthcare have already been proven around the world. In fact, the collection and analysis of data is the fastest growing trend in healthcare. Data collected from across multiple organizations within a population can be used to study trends and develop strategies geared toward the most effective treatment and prevention of disease. With this in mind, the California Department of Public Health created the California Cancer Registry (CCR) to gather data and analyze the various factors affecting cancer risk. The California State Assembly then passed a law requiring Pathologists to report all cancer diagnoses to the CCR using the College of American Pathologists' protocols. The law goes into effect Jan 1, 2019.

"But wait!" You might be thinking, "I don't practice in California; why should I care about their laws and registries?"

Topics: Cancer Checklists CAP synoptic reporting

California Makes Reporting Diagnoses to the Cancer Registry Mandatory

Healthcare organizations around the world have discovered the benefits of "big data" thanks to the enormous amounts of data available from electronic health records (EHRs). Up to now, though, the data have been largely unstructured, especially in Anatomic Pathology. This has meant that it is not always easy to mine the data for effective analysis, but that is changing. Many organizations are moving towards synoptic reporting and structured data capture. The difference between the two is subtle, but important. Synoptic reports are formatted for easy consumption by the human eye while structured data are formatted to be sorted, stored, and analyzed by computers.

Topics: Cancer Checklists CAP synoptic reporting

Structured Data and Synoptic Reporting in Anatomic Pathology

The collection and sharing of data is a growing trend in healthcare, and Pathology is no exception. In the face of value-based reimbursement models, clinical Pathology laboratories are already gathering and leveraging huge quantities of data that are standardized across the industry. By collecting, sharing, and analyzing this data, clinical labs are able to demonstrate results and added value by assisting institutions in better population health management.

Anatomic Pathology reporting has historically been more narrative, but it can still benefit from structured data collection and distribution. There is already data collection and sharing occurring in cancer research, with the College of American Pathologists' electronic Cancer Checklists and the California Cancer Registry being two examples. While those are the most recognizable instances, the benefits of synoptic reporting and structured data to anatomic Pathology are not confined to cancer reporting or CAP compliance.

Topics: CAP synoptic reporting

Call it Petya or NotPetya, it Wreaked Havoc on Transcription Services

Hospitals around the world have seen their transcription services interrupted by the June 27 cyber attack. At first, the attack looked like the ransomware known as Petya. It encrypted users' files and demanded a ransom before unlocking them, but the ransom proved difficult if not impossible to pay. Authorities then began to suspect the attack, now called "NotPetya," was only created to cause as much disruption as possible. On that count, it has been very successful; the malware has spread to individuals, companies, and even nations around the world.

Topics: Technology Cyber Security

Change is Coming - Fight For it, Not Against it [Free Download]

In just a few days, we will be entering new and unexpected territory. I don't know about you, but my inbox has been flooded with blog articles, webinar invites, and even advertisements predicting what is coming down the line this year. Some are about what we can expect from a Trump administration, others are about the demise (or not) of the Affordable Care Act, and still others are investment advice for dealing with an uncertain global market. But what should be made of all the predictions when so many in the past year have been flat out wrong?

One thing we do know: Change is coming.

Topics: Change Management