Becker’s Hospital Review: 4th Annual Health IT & Revenue Cycle Conference

–By Debra Prentice, Market Development Director for Arrow Solutions Group

Arrow Solutions Group attended the Becker’s Hospital Review: 4th Annual Health IT & Revenue Cycle Conference at the Hyatt Regency, Chicago. Over 3,500 people from hospitals and health systems gathered to participate in sessions hosted by keynote speakers, health executives, keynote panelists, and for networking opportunities. Becker’s Healthcare publications and events have the mission to “inform and entertain’, and this event definitely did not disappoint.

Chicago: September 19th – 22nd, 2018

Some of the session themes included emerging technologies to improve healthcare revenue cycles and Health IT, some of the biggest challenges facing the healthcare industry, and panels about thought leadership. All panels were insightful and placed the patient at the center of discussion. The following are some highlights from the event:


Edward Marx – Chief Information Officer, Cleveland Clinic: Climbing the World’s Highest Mountains: Lessons Learned Leading through Peaks and Valleys


Marx spoke about leadership and achieving goals as a part of a team, and used his experience at climbing the world’s highest mountains to illustrate engaging and leading teams. Marx recommends your trail guide should be: teamwork, leadership, the individual and beyond. He explained that when forming your team you should be prepared to take ownership and accountability with a healthy amount of fortitude. A good leader should lighten the load of the team, and understand that “not everyone is wired like you”; and in order to build people, “make sure you point out why people are are successful and why they are useful to the team”. Marx also explained that humility goes a long way, and in order to be successful at work, “you have got to have a strong base camp (strong family, home, and personal life)”.

to learn more about  Marx:





“Once you find meaning – you find your purpose… once you find your purpose, passion follows. Once that happens, you  can change the world!” — Edward Marx 




Panel Discussion: The Biggest Problems and New Ideas in Health IT

problems and new ideas

Sue Martin, Vice President & National Senior Healthcare Executive – CommerceHealthcareJames Woodson,  Founder and Chief Executive Officer – PulsaraJim Jamieson, Co-Founder and Chief Operation Officer – Evidence Care; Kerri Zelensek (moderator), Associate, JD: McGuireWoods, LLP


james woodsonWoodson discussed the opposing forces of what is going on in healthcare, “(We) try to find the balance because we are pulled in so many different directions. On one end, people want customization. On the other end, they want standardization.” Woodson conveyed that he wanted people to think about how the decisions they make everyday and how the technology (or lack thereof) affects the health care of patients.

“The biggest problem is how much information is fragmented and we should have a growth in conversations around AI (artificial intelligence)”. Additionally, people have trouble communicating between systems because of missing records or data; and it is not just a systems (interoperability) problem, “people themselves have problems communicating with each other. Because of these issues, we must start with a people-first mindset versus a data-first mindset.”

for more information about Pulsara, visit:


sue martin - linkedinMartin expressed that the main goal of any health care system is patient consumerism and patient engagement. Martin discussed that “what the banking industry did for consumers, should also be done for the health care industry”. She states that in certain cases, patients do not always have to go to a health care center: patients now have access to telehealth medicine.

Further, there is a need for better access to data, and to make the revenue cycle an easier process for the patients: “take the stress out of the revenue cycle space.” Martin explains that when visiting a hospital the prior week, she observed that in addition to the influx of paperwork, the number 1 call from patients was an explanation of their bill or an explanation of their benefits. Martin advises that processes need to be looked at on the front-end due to lean staffs and biggest complaint from staff is, “the (high) number of clicks vs. the (small) amount of time spent with patients.”

“As we move towards value-based care and how to split bundled payments, interoperability is about working together instead of rip and replace” — Sue Martin, CommerceHealthcare program at Commerce Bank.

note: Arrow Solutions Group had the opportunity to speak one-on-one with Sue Martin and Amy Rinard (Vice President, Healthcare Payments Manager) about Commerce Bank and their unique strategy to provide a seamless experience on revenue cycle for both patients and hospitals with their Commerce Healthcare program. After initiating a 0% loan program for patients, Commerce Bank has experienced a significantly higher collection rate for its clients than industry averages.

for more information:


jim jamiesonJamieson states that healthcare is a 3 trillion dollar industry, a third of which is wasted on the wrong things. Clinician burnout is the number one issue in healthcare because physicians are spending 52% of their days behind a computer. Jamieson also states that we do not have to customize a solution for every problem, a better use of api’s (application programming interface) can resolve many issues. Further, patients are no longer loyal to one healthcare provider: many patients shop for their healthcare and we need, “a longitudinal record of a patient’s entire history.”

for more information on Evidence Care, visit:


Justin Adams – Chief Executive Officer, Digitize AI: What Snake Oil and AI in Healthcare have in Common: Lessons Learned from 15 Years in the AI Trenches

Justin Adams


Adams spoke on the history of ‘snake oil’ in the 1800’s and how it started out as a legitimate application. Original snake oil wasn’t always a con: original formulas utilized oil from the Chinese water snake, which is rich in omega-3 and did indeed reduce inflammation; however, when alternative forms to the Chinese water snake were used (such as rattlesnakes), snake oil became useless. Adams related snake oil to what could happen with AI: a legitimate application + short supply (and high demand) could equal disappointed customers.


Useful AI:

  • Must be automated and it must be a model that produces action.
  • Must be a model that guarantees ROI.
  • The solution must be “pragmatically narrow” in order to work. AI will not fix everything: in order to be useful it must have a narrow use case.
  • The data feed-back loop of AI gets more valuable over time. This is the first time in history that a software does not degrade over time.”
  • The people that are selling the AI solutions must be credible.

Four Pillars to start your AI Journey:

  • Have clear strategic goals
  • Have a narrowly defined specific use case
  • Implement a team with the right type of experience
  • Utilize the right type of application


New call-to-action


Celebrity Keynote Speakers:

Howard Dean, MD – Former Chairman of the DNC and Former Governor of Vermont

Rudy Guiliani – 107th Mayor of New York City; Partner – Giuliani Partners

On Wednesday evening, both Dean and Guiliani spoke about humorous behind-the-scenes views of politics, and both spoke about apathy in terms of healthcare:

Dean and Guiliani-1

Guilliani: “Apathy is the worst disease that can affect a democracy.”

Dean: “We can’t tolerate it (apathy). Most real change starts with the community.”


NFL Legend, Peyton Manning

On Thursday evening, Peyton Manning spoke to the Becker’s Conference about leadership, preparedness, and being a part of team. 

peyton manning2

“Pressure is something you feel when you’re not prepared.” — Peyton Manning


Tennis Champion: Venus Williams

On Friday evening, Williams had a light-hearted discussion about hard work and the important role her parents played in her success. Williams stressed from her own personal experience, no matter how hard you work or what careful decisions you make – you cannot please all of the people all of the time. When asked how she keeps a balanced life, Williams states:



“The world is unbalanced. You can not be balanced in an unbalanced world… Besides – I don’t want to be balanced: that would be boring. Instead of checking my balance, I check my happiness.” –Venus Williams



Over 200 hospital and health executives spoke in panels and sessions about healthcare innovation, IT security, revenue cycle performance, and data-analytics. Becker’s Hospital Review’s next event is it’s 10th Annual Meeting April 1-4 2019. Keynote speakers at this event include: Bill Clinton (42nd President of the U.S.), George W. Bush (43rd President of the U.S.), Katie Couric (News Anchor), Michale Dowling (CEO – Norwell Health), Redonda Miller (President, John Hopkins Hospital), and many others!