Bringing Chargemaster (CDM) Standardization to Healthcare Systems

As the trend of hospital mergers and acquisitions continues nationwide, and existing systems begin to mature and transition to one uniform patient financial system, chargemaster (CDM) standardization has become a more common practice. However, while the process of standardizing a CDM by designating a single system-wide service code for each service item sounds simple enough, the process of combining multiple disparate system hospital CDMs actually can be quite daunting when using traditional lookups, tables and queries.

Take, for example, a recent engagement we had with a two-hospital system based out of Chicago. This provider was in the process of implementing a system conversion, bringing both hospitals together under one platform. After evaluating the implementation deadlines and the time and effort that would have been involved with executing the plan, they turned to Panacea. Fortunately, as timing had it, the health system was an existing client; our consultants presented to them the CDMsync solution. Six weeks later, their CDMs were synchronized and a master CDM was in place.

The benefit beyond the actual synchronization was the time saved. The CDMsync system automatically synchronized upwards of 80 percent of their CDM. What this meant for them was that while our team of clinical, financial and coding experts spent the balance of their time scrutinizing discrepancies and meeting with clinical leadership to determine best practices, the systems finance team was able to begin building the framework for a master system CDM.

System hospitals often provide very competitive services, but do those services share the same HCPCS codes, revenue codes, descriptions and/or prices as those offered by other providers? Panacea developed the CDMsync application to synchronize disparate CDMs swiftly and flag inconsistencies for like services, drugs and/or supply items. If you are currently in the process of developing a corporate master CDM, posturing for a system conversion that would bring multiple hospitals under one platform, or looking to establish consistency in coding, descriptions and pricing across your healthcare system CDMs, go online to http://panacea.articulate-online.com/5560961195 for an on-demand presentation to learn more.

About the Author

Henry Gutierrez is Senior Consultant, Financial Consulting Services of Panacea. Henry has 20 years of experience in Healthcare Financial Management both in the provider setting as well as consulting independently. He is experienced in Budgeting and Financial Planning, 3rd Party Regulatory Cost Reporting, Service Line Profitability, Managed Care Contracting, Net Revenue Modeling and Claims Auditing, Charge Description Master Reviews and Revenue Cycle Management. Henry has fully implemented, designed and managed Decision Support & Cost Accounting, Service Line Profitability, Contract Management and Budgeting Systems. Contact Henry at 866-926-5933 x717 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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