As Obamacare Brings Patients, Doctors Not Warm To Medicaid

Klinify Raises $600K To Build An Evernote For Doctors In South Asia

The surve y, by physician staffing and consulting fi rm MerrittHawkins s howedjust 45.7 percent Medicaid acceptance as the Affordable Care Act provides a cash infusion of more than $900 billion in federal dollars from this year to 2022 to expand Medicaid programs for states interested in the proposition. There are, howe ver, about two dozen states, with R epublican governors or GOP legislatures opposed to the expansion that have turned down the federal dollars. There is also separate federal funding to raise Medicaid payments for primary care doctors to the level of payments from the Medicare health insurance program for the elderly through this year. That means an average pay increase of 73 percent for eligible primary care doctors. Tetra Images/Getty Images/Brand X Its unclear exactly how many more doctors will see Medicaid patients under the enhanced payments, but Merritt Hawkins Hawkins analysts, citing their study, dont see Medicaid acceptance changing much in part because more people will have private coverage, which generally pays doctors more than Medicaid or Medicare. Medicaid is the worst and Medicare is not much better and neither are as good as commercial insurance, said Travis Singleton, senior vice president at Merritt Hawkins, a subsidiary of AMN Healthcare (AMN). Doctors, Singleton said, will cherry pick patients depending on what insurance they have. To think physicians are going to change their tune and start accepting patients, Singleton said. Its unlikely to happen. The Medicaid acceptance trend indicates it will take a lot to get doctors to open their doors to Medicaid patients. The average rate of acceptance among family physicians, dermatologists, cardiologists, orthopedic surgeons and obstetrician/gynecologists in all 15 markets surveyed was 45.7 percent last year, according to data gathered from nearly 1,400 medical offices last year. The 2014 survey showed a drop from 55.4 percent acceptance in 2009, Merritt Hawkins said. In 2004, 49.9 percent of doctors surveyed accepted Medicaid patients. If Medicaid acceptance doesnt improve, it could impact choices of doctors for health plans that contract with the program.

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Doctors begin partial strike Monday, Health Ministry disagrees over participation rate

They fail to understand that most ofthe information aregenerated outside clinics through reports and images and that paper will be around for a long time, Krishanthan Surendran (Krish), the startups co-founder said in an interview. The doctors can use Klinifys tablet application to write prescriptions, make diagrams and even refer back to earlier diagnosis, just the way they would write on paper except that theres no paper involved. The users can also access patient records in the cloud from anywhere. I would say our closest competition is Evernote.There are thousands of EMR software out there, but doctors rarely use them to manage patient records. They are used as CRMs/ inventory management or accounting tools mostly; patient records are still paper based around this region, said Krish. With Klinify, the founders are attempting to address two of the most important needs of nearly $3 billion electronic medical record market in Asia ease of use and portability across different platforms. For now, Klinify is targeting around 5,000 doctors with their private clinics in Singapore, but it has plans to expand in other markets of Indonesia, India and even Japan going forward. Currently, a general physician stores about 40,000 records on an average and a specialist around 15,000 patient records in Singapore, according to Klinify. Though still in beta, Klinify has started getting encouraging reviews from senior doctors. Existing EMR solutions address practice inventory and accounts management, but Klinify is the first to provide a smooth solution in managing patients medical records without changing the workflow process, said Dr. C Sivathasan, a cardiac surgeon based in Singapore and an early user of Klinify. Klinify charges doctors on per-patient-per-visit basis, starting at anywhere between S$0.20 to S$6. Klinify started as Doctree.Asia, but its founders Krish and Nishanth Sudharsanam pivoted it into a new product six months later after realizing its not working out. But the learnings helped the founders flesh out Klinify. This is how the founders explained their idea at JFDI.Asia demo day last year: We eventually found out that they (doctors) hated a change in workflow process, and that went as far as their thought process when it came to consulting a patient, added Krish. While Singapore has its own National Electronic Healthcare Record system, its more focused on large hospitals, leaving a huge opportunity for startups such as Klinify to tap into.

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Health Ministry Spokesperson Ahmed Kamel said participation in the partial strike on Monday only reached 19 percent nationwide, while the doctors claimed 50 percent participation. Number of hospitals that took part in the strike is 88 out of 514 hospitals across the country, Kamel told Al-Masry Al-Youm. The strike was partial. It did not completely affect work at the hospitals. It was at some, not all, the external clinics, he added. The ministry formed operations chamber to communicate with heads of the hospitals, ministry deputies across Egypt to follow on the strike and assist patients. Mona Mina, secretary general of the syndicate, said participation within the strike on the first day is less than that of previous strikes. She added that participation rates of governorates of Aswan, Ismailia and Alexandria has not been sent to the syndicate due to urgent circumstances that happened to coordinators of the strike at these governorates. The average rate of participation in strike is 50 percent, which is less than the last average which reached 70 percent, Mina added. Strike at hospitals of Cairo reached 55 percent. In Sohag, Luxor and Qena, strike reached 90 percent. In Gharbiya, strike reached 60 percent. In Qalyoubeya, it reached 50 percent, according to her. The strike also reached 50 percent in Suez, 90 percent in Kafr al-Sheikh, 80 percent in Beheira and 60 percent in Marsa Matrouh, Mina said. The syndicate earlier called for strike against the doctors cadre which was adopted by Health Ministry. Doctors indicate to shortcomings within the cadre regarding the salaries and employment rights.

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