CHICAGO – May 23, 2024 – The nation’s hospitals and health systems saw strong financial performance in April as patient demand and revenues rose, according to new data from Strata Decision Technology.  

April marked the 12th consecutive month of year-over-year (YOY) gross revenue increases across both inpatient and outpatient metrics. Hospital outpatient revenue had the biggest increase, rising 15.3% YOY as demand for convenient outpatient services remains high. Inpatient revenue was up 11.7%, helping to push overall gross operating revenue up 14.1% YOY. 

Healthy revenue growth contributed to steady hospital operating margins. The median, year-to-date hospital operating margin — which represents the average, actual operating margin for hospitals nationally — held firm at 4.7% for a second consecutive month. 

“Hospitals and health systems continue to see encouraging financial performance as we head into the second quarter of the year,” said Steve Wasson, chief data and intelligence officer at Strata Decision Technology. “The data indicate that many healthcare leaders are finding effective strategies to navigate persistent high expenses. They are successfully moving their organizations to more stable ground and away from narrower margins that plagued hospitals throughout 2023.” 

Source: Comparative Analytics 

Looking at how margins have shifted over time, the median change in operating margin rose 4.2 percentage points from April 2023 to April 2024, and was up 1.1 percentage point compared to March 2024. 

Patient volumes increased across most measures in April for healthcare organizations nationwide. Outpatient visits had the biggest increases, up 12.9% YOY and 4.6% versus the prior month. Inpatient admissions were flat month-over-month but rose 9.7% YOY, due in part to the effects of January’s expansion of the Two-Midnight Rule to Medicare Advantage patients. Other volume metrics also increased YOY, with emergency visits up 3.3% YOY and observation visits up 0.8%. 

At the same time, hospitals continued to feel the pressures of ongoing expense increases. Total non-labor expense had the biggest increase at 10.5% YOY, driven by sizable increases in supply expense (16.7%) and drugs expense (14.9%) over the same period. The increases were a return to recent trends after supply expense was essentially flat and drugs expense decreased in March. Total labor expense rose 4.1% and total expense was up 7.4% from April 2023 to April 2024.  

Read Strata’s Monthly Healthcare Industry Financial Benchmarks to learn more.  

About the Data  

This report uses data from Comparative Analytics and Strata’s StrataSphere® database. Comparative Analytics offers access to near real-time data drawn from more than 135,000 physicians from over 10,000 practices and 139 specialty categories, and from 500+ unique departments across more than 1,600 hospitals. Comparative Analytics also provides data and comparisons specific to a single organization for visibility into how their market is evolving. StrataSphere is a unique and comprehensive data-sharing platform that helps providers leverage the power of a network that represents approximately 25% of all provider spend in U.S. healthcare. This report incorporates data from 646 hospitals from 122 health systems with StrataJazz® Decision Support, as reported in the National Patient and Procedure Volume TrackerTM

  

About Strata Decision Technology  

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help organizations better analyze, plan, and perform in support of their missions. With the combination of Syntellis Performance Solutions’ Axiom solutions, more than 2,300 organizations rely on Strata to provide their financial analytics, planning, and performance solutions. Strata has been named the market leader for Business Decision Support for 18 consecutive years. By uniting these two industry leaders, Strata continues to deliver market-leading solutions and world-class service, with an increased focus on accelerating innovation. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com.   

  

Syntellis Social Networks  
LinkedIn: Strata Decision Technology 

Media contact:  

Sally Brown, Inkhouse  

[email protected]  

CHICAGO, May 14, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Hospitals and health systems nationwide saw a sizable increase in delayed or missing payments in the first quarter, due in part to a recent, large-scale disruption to payment processing services, according to a new report from Strata Decision Technology

Depending on the size of the hospital, estimated gaps in expected versus actual revenue ranged from 16.5% to 17.9% of payments for the first three months of 2024. The findings are among multiple analyses in the report, which includes data from Strata’s database of more than 1,600 hospitals. The report also examined the projected impacts of expansion of the Two-Midnight Rule, and rapid growth in outpatient surgeries in recent years.

The data on missing payments found that the largest and the smallest hospitals — as defined by annual operating expenses — were the most affected. Given that payments can take many weeks after the date of service to process, the shortfall for the largest U.S. hospitals started at 12.2% for services provided in January and rose to 21.1% by March for an average of 17.9% over the three-month period. The smallest hospitals had an average 17.1% shortfall for the quarter, with the gap swelling from 12% in January to 20.4% by March.

“Our data show that hospitals across the country experienced significant shortfalls in payment volumes in the first quarter that could have ripple effects throughout the year,” said Steve Wasson, chief data and intelligence officer at Strata Decision Technology. “The long-term impacts of this disruption remain to be seen, but we will continue to monitor and report on hospitals’ financial performance in the months ahead.”

Impacts of the Two-Midnight Rule

A separate analysis found that expansion of the Two-Midnight Rule could affect more than 20% of Medicare Advantage encounters in 2024. The rule requires patients to be admitted as an inpatient if the treating clinician determines they require hospital care that extends beyond two midnights. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) first implemented the Two-Midnight Rule for Medicare in 2013 and expanded it to include more than 30 million people enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans, effective in January of this year.

An analysis of Medicare Advantage encounters from 2023 — before the rule was expanded — found that 22.3% were held in observation status for two days or more. Expansion of the rule already contributed to higher inpatient volumes in the first quarter. In March, inpatient admissions rose 3.9% year-over-year (YOY) while outpatient admissions decreased 5.1% YOY.

Expansion of Outpatient Surgeries

A third analysis examined changes in the share of surgical procedures performed in outpatient settings. Starting in 2019, CMS removed certain surgical procedures from its inpatient-only list, allowing them to be covered in outpatient surgical centers. As a result, the share of surgical procedures performed in outpatient settings grew from 33.6% in January 2019 to 45% in March 2024. The shift was especially dramatic for certain high-volume procedures. For example, the share of knee replacement surgeries performed on an outpatient basis jumped from 20.1% in January 2019 to 80.7% in March 2024.

Read the Q1 2024 Strata Performance Trends report to learn more. 

About the Data 

The report uses data from Strata’s StrataSphere® and Comparative Analytics database. Comparative Analytics offers access to near real-time data drawn from more than 135,000 physicians from over 10,000 practices and 139 specialty categories, and from 500+ unique departments across more than 1,600 hospitals. Comparative Analytics also provides data and comparisons specific to a single organization for visibility into how their market is evolving. StrataSphere is a unique and comprehensive data-sharing platform that helps providers leverage the power of a network that represents approximately 25% of all provider spend in U.S. healthcare. This report incorporates data from more than 600 hospitals with StrataJazz® Decision Support.

About Strata Decision Technology 

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help organizations better analyze, plan, and perform in support of their missions. With the combination of Syntellis Performance Solutions’ Axiom solutions, more than 2,300 organizations rely on Strata to provide their financial analytics, planning, and performance solutions. Strata has been named the market leader for Business Decision Support for 18 consecutive years. By uniting these two industry leaders, Strata continues to deliver market-leading solutions and world-class service, with an increased focus on accelerating innovation. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com.

Strata Social Networks 
LinkedIn: Strata Decision Technology
Media contact: 
Sally Brown, Inkhouse 
[email protected]

Infectious disease patient volumes rose above 2023 levels in March

CHICAGO – April 26, 2024 – U.S. hospitals and health systems showed strong performance throughout the first quarter as organizations benefitted from healthy revenue growth so far in 2024, according to new data from Strata Decision Technology

The median, year-to-date hospital operating margin was 4.7% in March, as organizations saw an 11th consecutive month of year-over-year (YOY) increases across gross operating, inpatient, and outpatient revenues. Looking at fluctuations in the metric over time, the median change in operating margin was relatively steady, down just 0.1 percentage point YOY and down 0.3 percentage point month-over-month.

“Hospitals and health systems across the country had promising financial performance in the first quarter, as operating margins appear to have stabilized for the time being,” said Steve Wasson, chief data and intelligence officer at Strata Decision Technology. “At the same time, we saw some notable shifts in key expense, revenue, and volume growth metrics in March. If these changes persist in future months, it could signal that long-running industry trends are switching course.”

Hospital expenses continued to rise across most metrics. Looking back over the past few years, labor expenses spiked due to significant demand during the pandemic, but high inflation caused non-labor expenses to grow at a faster rate starting in late 2022. In March, however, YOY growth in labor expenses again outpaced non-labor expenses for the first time in 18 months, suggesting that the effects of inflation may be easing.

Total labor expense rose 3.5% versus March 2023, while total non-labor expense increased 2% YOY. Total expense was up 2.7% YOY. Supply expense was nearly flat with an increase of just 0.1% compared to the same month last year, while drugs expense decreased 2.8% over the same period — representing a reversal after both metrics saw double-digit YOY growth the month before. Total expense per adjusted discharge rose 2.5% YOY. 

Hospitals also saw a shift in revenues as growth in inpatient revenues surpassed outpatient revenue increases for the first time since late 2021, reflecting tremendous growth in outpatient services in recent years. Inpatient revenue rose 3.7% versus March 2023, outpatient revenue was up 2.4% YOY, and overall gross operating revenue increased 3.1% YOY. Net patient service revenue (NPSR) per adjusted discharge rose 2.5% from March 2023 to March 2024.

To further reinforce the change in revenues, hospitals also saw inpatient admissions rise 3.9% YOY while outpatient visits dropped 5.1% YOY for the month. Implementation of the Two-Midnight Rule for Medicare Advantage patients starting in January 2024 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) contributed to the increase in inpatient admissions. The rule limits the number of days those patients can be held in observation status before they must be admitted as inpatients. At the same time, observation visits decreased 4.2% versus March 2023 and emergency department (ED) visits rose 2.6% YOY. 

Looking at specific service lines, Infectious Disease had the biggest YOY volume growth in both inpatient and outpatient visits with an increase of 35.6% versus March 2023. Contributing factors likely include higher instances of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), COVID-19, influenza, and measles. From February to March 2024, however, infectious disease volumes decreased 8.2%.

Read Strata’s Monthly Healthcare Industry Financial Benchmarks to learn more. 

About the Data 

This report uses data from Axiom™ Comparative Analytics and Strata’s StrataSphere® database. Comparative Analytics offers access to near real-time data drawn from more than 135,000 physicians from over 10,000 practices and 139 specialty categories, and from 500+ unique departments across more than 1,600 hospitals. Axiom Comparative Analytics also provides data and comparisons specific to a single organization for visibility into how their market is evolving. StrataSphere is a unique and comprehensive data-sharing platform that helps providers leverage the power of a network that represents approximately 25% of all provider spend in U.S. healthcare. This report incorporates data from 619 hospitals from 119 health systems with StrataJazz® Decision Support, as reported in the National Patient and Procedure Volume TrackerTM.

About Strata Decision Technology 

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help organizations better analyze, plan, and perform in support of their missions. With the combination of Syntellis Performance Solutions’ Axiom solutions, more than 2,300 organizations rely on Strata to provide their financial analytics, planning, and performance solutions. Strata has been named the market leader for Business Decision Support for 18 consecutive years. By uniting these two industry leaders, Strata continues to deliver market-leading solutions and world-class service, with an increased focus on accelerating innovation. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com.  

Syntellis Social Networks 
LinkedIn: Strata Decision Technology

Media contact: 

Sally Brown, Inkhouse 

[email protected]

CFO Outlook Survey Reveals a Need for Organizations to Do More with Data

CHICAGO – March 13, 2024 – Despite ongoing expense pressures, leaders at hospitals, health systems, and other healthcare organizations nationwide are optimistic their organizations will build financial health throughout 2024, according to a new report from Strata Decision Technology

The 2024 CFO Outlook for Healthcare report, which features survey results of more than 100 healthcare finance professionals, found that more than half (52%) ranked their optimism at 4 or 5 on a 5-point scale. Only 1% of respondents said they were not optimistic about their organization’s financial performance.

Financial improvements in 2023 contributed to the increased optimism. December marked a 10th consecutive month of positive hospital operating margins after the metric was negative throughout 2022 and the first two months of 2023. Fifty-two percent of survey respondents also said they expect to see their organizations’ operating margins improve over the course of the year. Fourteen percent anticipate operating margins will decrease, while 28% said they would be about the same.

“For the first time since the pandemic, healthcare leaders have cause to be optimistic about their organizations’ futures,” said Steve Wasson, chief data and intelligence officer with Strata Decision Technology. “While operating margins were narrow throughout 2023, gains in revenues and margins in the latter part of the year laid the foundation for further stabilization. To continue that momentum, organizations will need to commit to using data and other tools to help them manage performance and navigate market changes in the year ahead.”

High costs remain a concern for many. Survey respondents cited contract labor and employed labor as their biggest unforeseen costs of 2023. For 2024, reining in costs — including high labor and non-labor costs — is a top priority for 55% of healthcare leaders. Other high priorities cited by survey respondents include managing strategic and performance improvement initiatives (51%) and managing service line financial performance (45%). Cost improvements ranked as the area that offers the most opportunity to improve margin, while strategic growth was No. 2 and quality improvements was No. 3.

Healthcare finance leaders gained renewed confidence in their teams’ ability to adapt to change. Ninety-five percent of respondents said they are either very confident or somewhat confident in their teams’ ability to adjust strategies in response to sudden market and business changes, such as a natural disaster or another pandemic. That was up from 89% in the 2023 survey.

Healthcare leaders are increasingly leveraging data to tackle current and future challenges. The survey results show that 95% of organizations use external performance benchmarks to inform organizational decisions. More than a third (36%) use benchmarks to measure financial and operational performance and 30% measure clinical quality outcomes against peer organizations. Just over a quarter (28%) said they measure labor and productivity against peers.

At the same time, more than nine in 10 healthcare finance professionals surveyed (92%) said their organizations should do more to leverage financial and operational data to inform strategic decisions. Only 8% said they did not need to do more.

Strata’s 2024 CFO Outlook for Healthcare report combines the survey findings with year-end financial performance data from more than 1,300 hospitals and health systems and more than 135,000 physicians, including Axiom™ Comparative Analytics and Strata’s All-Payer Claims and StrataSphere data.

About Strata Decision Technology 

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help organizations better analyze, plan, and perform in support of their missions. With the combination of Syntellis Performance Solutions’ Axiom solutions, more than 2,300 organizations rely on Strata to provide their financial analytics, planning, and performance solutions. Strata has been named the market leader for Business Decision Support for 18 consecutive years. By uniting these two industry leaders, Strata continues to deliver market-leading solutions and world-class service, with an increased focus on accelerating innovation. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com

Syntellis Social Networks 
LinkedIn: Syntellis Performance Solutions 
Twitter: @Syntellis 

Media contact: 

Sally Brown, Inkhouse 

[email protected]  

Healthcare organizations rank Strata’s Decision Support and Financial Planning & Analytics solutions Best in KLAS

CHICAGO – February 7, 2024 – Strata Decision Technology (Strata), a pioneer and leader in the development of cloud-based financial planning, analytics and performance tools, today announced the company ranked No. 1 in Business Decision Support as part of the 2024 Best in KLAS: Software and Services report from KLAS Research. It marks the 18th consecutive year the company has been ranked No. 1 in the category of Business Decision Support across various solutions.

With this year’s score of 88.6 out of 100, Strata’s StrataJazz® Decision Support tool has now been named the market leader in Business Decision Support for the past decade. Additionally, Strata’s StrataJazz® Financial Planning tool received top rankings in Financial Planning & Analysis for the second time in the two years KLAS has offered the category, with a customer satisfaction score of 85.5 out of 100.

“At KLAS, we firmly believe that the voice of healthcare providers and payers is paramount,” said Adam Gale, KLAS Chief Executive Officer. “The Best in KLAS awards are based on extensive feedback and evaluations from healthcare professionals across the nation. Winning a Best in KLAS award, therefore, is not just about recognition; it shows the trust and confidence that healthcare providers place in the winning vendors. It also helps validate each vendor’s commitment to innovation, quality, and customer satisfaction. We are proud to recognize 2024’s Best in KLAS award winners! Their unwavering dedication to improving patient outcomes is wonderfully inspiring.”

The annual Best in KLAS ratings are based on feedback from tens of thousands of interviews with customers conducted throughout the year evaluating their level of satisfaction with over 1,100 healthcare information technology applications and services.

“We are honored to receive Best in KLAS in Business Decision Support, in addition to earning top honors for our Financial Planning & Analysis solutions,” said John Martino, Chief Executive Officer of Strata. “We share this accomplishment with our customers and offer a huge thanks for their ongoing partnership and trust in our solutions. Receiving another year of Best in KLAS distinctions in these areas reflects the work of our entire team as we look to provide our customers with the best solutions and support.”

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help organizations better analyze, plan and perform in support of their organizational missions.

As part of Strata’s recent combination with Syntellis Performance Solutions (Syntellis), the company now also provides solutions to higher education, financial institutions and commercial markets. In the healthcare space, Strata continues to invest in and innovate its market-leading products, as well as grow and scale its data and intelligence capabilities.

The company’s 18-year-long streak ranked Best in KLAS reflects over 28 years of work providing its customers with leading planning solutions and services.

Customer Commentary  

In determining its rankings, KLAS collects quantitative and qualitative feedback from healthcare providers regarding the applications that they use. The following are a few of the comments from Strata customers, reported by KLAS:

StrataJazz® Decision Support

  • Advanced Functionality: “I’m very pleased with the software and our relationship with Strata Decision Technology. The quality of the engineering and the design of the product are why we selected the vendor, and those things have been maintained. We did a full-blown market analysis, and StrataJazz Decision Support was the best product.” Director, October 2023
  • Usability: “Strata Decision Technology’s tool is super intuitive, and the current design is well liked and received by the folks who use it. The vendor’s current supporting tool is user friendly.” Manager, April 2023
  • Partnership: “The system has changed a lot since we implemented it. We are looking at doing activity costing. That is an in-depth way to do cost procedures. The vendor stays updated on the most current and accurate ways to handle costs. They roll those methods out to clients and enable clients to enhance their reports and give their board members real-time data that makes sense. I like that about the vendor.” Director, October 2023

StrataJazz® Financial Planning

  • Innovation: “Strata Decision Technology’s biggest strengths are their continued development of the tool to increase productivity on my team and trying to build budgets. The biggest improvement I have seen was when we moved to the [OnePlan®] for budgeting.” VP/Other Executive, July 2023
  • Agile Planning: “The solution has helped us from a budget preparation standpoint; we have more insight into what is happening in the current year. We are more proactively reaching out to certain areas to see what is happening so that as we go through establishing a target operating budget, we are able to look back at the discussions we had in the year and identify gaps and risks before we are in the next budget cycle. We can see trends and plan for things more quickly than in the past, so we are more reactive.” Director, September 2023
  • Ease of Use:“When we run reports out of StrataJazz Financial Planning, we know they are correct. I can go into our revenue cycle with any report that I run. I can spot-check and pull any of the encounters.” Director, October 2023

The full 2024 Best in KLAS: Software and Services report is available at www.klasresearch.com.
Click here to learn more about Strata or set up a demonstration of our solutions.

About KLAS

KLAS is a data-driven company on a mission to improve the world’s healthcare by enabling provider and payer voices to be heard and counted. Working with thousands of healthcare professionals, KLAS collects insights on software, services and medical equipment to deliver reports, trending data and statistical overviews. KLAS data is accurate, honest and impartial. The research directly reflects the voice of healthcare professionals and acts as a catalyst for improving vendor performance. To learn more about KLAS, visit KLASresearch.com.

About Strata Decision Technology

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help organizations better analyze, plan and perform in support of their missions. With the combination of Syntellis Performance Solutions’ Axiom solutions, more than 2,300 organizations rely on Strata to provide their financial analytics, planning and performance solutions. Strata has been named the market leader for Business Decision Support for 18 consecutive years. By uniting these two industry leaders, Strata continues to deliver market-leading solutions and world-class service, with an increased focus on accelerating innovation. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com

Contacts

Sally Brown, Inkhouse
[email protected]

LIFT23: The Strata Users Virtual Summit unites industry leaders for three days of discussion and sharing of strategies to shape the future of healthcare financial planning

CHICAGO, Oct. 25, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Strata Decision Technology (Strata), a leader in the development of cloud-based financial planning, cost accounting, performance analytics and data solutions hosted over 2,400 attendees from Strata’s client network of more than 800 healthcare systems at LIFT23: The Strata Users Virtual Summit. As part of the three-day event hosted October 23 – 25, 2023, Strata also honored six leading healthcare organizations with its LEAP Award recognizing outstanding performance in the areas of finance and strategy.

The LIFT23 event highlights use cases and best practices for addressing the challenges facing healthcare provider organizations today, offering leadership panels, product demonstrations and industry thought leadership. This year’s event offered new tools and resources to tackle today’s industry challenges, including new data & intelligence solutions, lessons and insights from LEAP Award winners and peer-led CPE-accredited panels and sessions.

Tackling Today’s Toughest Challenges in Healthcare

As the nation’s hospitals and health systems continue to feel the financial impact of shifting demand, rising labor costs and shrinking margins, the three-day virtual event brings together finance leaders from across the country to empower one another with actionable ideas for today and share how they prepare for tomorrow.

“Our healthcare clients are facing a number of challenges, including workforce shortages, new competition, shifts in care settings and other margin pressures,” said John Martino, Strata’s Chief Executive Officer. “We are excited to offer this three-day event as an opportunity for our growing network of over 800 healthcare organizations to come together and discuss the strategies they’re using to address these challenges. Following our planned business combination with Syntellis Performance Solutions, Strata’s tools and services will unlock new ways for our clients to identify and leverage key insights to support their organization moving forward.”

New Data & Intelligence Track Equips Leaders with Tools for Intelligent Planning & Actionable Analysis

This year’s LIFT23 attendees had access to an all-new data and intelligence solutions track. This track focused on new capabilities derived from powerful data sets and analytics solutions, including Axiom™ Comparative Analytics, Axiom™ Market Opportunity Visualization and Axiom™ Market Opportunity Analysis.

Opening the data and intelligence track was Strata’s Chief Data and Intelligence Officer, Steve Wasson, who presented key findings from the special-edition Strata and Syntellis Performance Trends report released today. This extended report combines financial, operational, and claims data from hospitals and physician practices across the country. This special edition highlights continued increase in demand for outpatient care, high yet stable labor costs as contract labor utilization declines, and some, albeit limited uplift in operating margins as compared to 2022.

2023 LEAP Award Winners Announced at LIFT23

During the event, six leading healthcare organizations were recognized with Strata’s 2023 LEAP (Lead, Excel, Achieve and Progress) Award in recognition of outstanding financial and strategic performance for the benefit of the organization and the communities it serves.

The 2023 LEAP Award winners are:

  • Integrated Delivery Networks: Catholic Health (Rockville Centre, NY)
  • Community Hospitals: Mary Washington Healthcare (Fredericksburg, VA)
  • Academic Medical Centers: UC Irvine Health (Irvine, CA)

Additionally, St. Luke’s University Health Network (Bethlehem, PA), Intermountain Health (Salt Lake City, UT) and Sentara Health (Norfolk, VA) were recognized as semi-finalists for demonstrated excellence in decision support, planning and performance, respectively.

Peer-led & CPE-Accredited Thought Leadership Sessions at LIFT23

A forum for healthcare leaders to share their experience and successful strategies related to financial planning, analytics and performance, the LIFT23 agenda included nearly 40 CPE-accredited sessions expertly led by almost 30 members of Strata’s client network. Charles Duhigg, award-winning New York Times reporter and bestselling author of The Power of Habit, delivered the Guest Keynote. Key sessions showcasing peer-tested best practices included:

  • Hear From the Front Lines: Labor Strategies from Chief Nursing Officers – Panel Discussion with Texas Health Frisco, Nebraska Medical Center and Catholic Health Mercy Hospital
  • Forecasting Best Practices: The Top Strategies from Across Our Network – Presented by Children’s Health (Dallas, TX) and Sentara Health
  • Healthcare Trends & Innovation Strategies – Panel Discussion with Mass General Brigham and Intermountain Health
  • Maintaining Momentum with Initiative Tracking – Presented by Northwestern Medicine, Essentia Health and Southern Illinois Healthcare

About Strata Decision Technology

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help healthcare providers better analyze, plan, and perform in support of caring for their community and reducing the cost of care. With the combination of Syntellis Performance Solutions’ Axiom solutions, approximately 800 healthcare organizations rely on Strata to provide their financial analytics, planning and performance solutions. Strata has been named the market leader for Business Decision Support for 17 consecutive years, and Syntellis’ Axiom solutions have maintained HFMA Peer Review designation for nearly a decade along with No. 1 rankings from Black Book Research for multiple years. By uniting these two industry leaders, Strata continues to deliver market-leading solutions and world-class service, with an increased focus on accelerating innovation. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com.

CHICAGO, (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – Strata Decision Technology (Strata), a pioneer and leader in the development of cloud-based financial planning, decision support and performance analytics solutions for healthcare, today announced that their parent company, Roper Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: ROP), has acquired Syntellis Performance Solutions, LLC (Syntellis) and will combine this business with Strata.

Syntellis is a leading provider of enterprise performance management software, data and intelligence solutions for healthcare, higher education and financial institutions. By uniting these two industry leaders, the company can unlock new levels of insights and value for clients. Strata and Syntellis will continue to deliver market-leading solutions and world-class service, with an increased focus on accelerating innovation. Strata will be led by Strata Chief Executive Officer, John Martino. As part of this transaction, Flint Brenton, CEO of Syntellis, will be departing the organization. Flint will serve in an advisory capacity and work with Strata leadership to ensure a smooth transition.

“Bringing together these talented teams and forward-thinking organizations will allow us to accelerate innovation and continue to build upon our market leading solutions,” said John Martino, CEO of Strata. “This transaction will expand Strata’s client base to include organizations across niche vertical markets. As we begin integration planning, the focus will be on supporting our clients and laying out a strategic vision which capitalizes on the strength of our solutions and our teams.”

Today, hospitals and healthcare delivery systems continue to face pressure from macro market trends, including challenges around the shift in care settings, reimbursement trailing rising costs and labor shortages and talent retention. To shift from reactionary tactics into a position of growth, healthcare organizations need advanced financial planning capabilities, integrated analytics and intelligent insights to improve decision-making.

Strata will continue to provide solutions that help its clients address their toughest financial challenges, by leveraging its bestin-class enterprise performance management platform and the combined expertise of the newly formed organization. The increased scale of the company will facilitate investments yielding greater innovation, accelerated delivery of solutions and expanded services that further drive value and increase return on investment for clients across all industries that the company now serves.
“Today, two premier organizations come together to deliver the most innovative planning, strategy and data intelligence solutions in the market,” said Flint Brenton, CEO of Syntellis. “I am incredibly proud of what the Syntellis team has accomplished. This transaction promises to drive innovation even further, revolutionizing the enterprise performance management space with strategic data insights that create unparalleled value for clients.”

With investments from private equity firms Thoma Bravo and Madison Dearborn Partners, LLC, Kaufman Hall Software became Syntellis in 2020. Syntellis is now part of the Roper Technologies, Inc. family, and will be integrated with Strata. The two organizations share a passion to help and empower their clients and this focus will remain the north star as integration planning begins. For more information, please visit www.stratadecision.com/strata-and-syntellis.

New tool operationalizes data to empower trusted decision-making for healthcare’s frontline leaders

CHICAGO – June 26, 2023 – Strata Decision Technology (Strata), a pioneer and leader in the development of cloud-based financial planning, analytics and performance tools for healthcare, today announced the launch of its Real-Time Workforce Management (RTWM) solution, designed to address the financial and operational goals of nursing leaders. The launch at HFMA’s Annual Conference in Nashville, TN will include a presentation from RTWM early adopter and Strata client, Texas Health Resources, who will share insights about the tool’s impact on the organization.

Expanding upon Strata’s comprehensive StrataJazz® platform, the RTWM solution provides nursing leadership with accurate, actionable data to help improve communication between leaders and staff.   Manual or offline modeling often results in misaligned data sets and inaccurate projections, which continue to impact the ability for nursing leaders to move from analysis to action. As a result, health systems encounter these persisting challenges:

  • Average labor expenses per hospital increased by 31.3% between 2019 and 2023*
  • Census projections based on laws of averages do not provide nurse managers with the information needed to make effective decisions
  • Decision-making for staffing is inhibited by risk of manual errors in expense projections

To help address this combination of issues, leading healthcare organizations are focusing on ways to strengthen the partnership between their finance, operational and clinical teams. The RTWM solution enables this collaboration by offering a one-stop-shop for unit managers, supervisors and nursing leadership to investigate and react to immediate staffing needs. It also allows health systems to leverage staff resources from across the entire organization.

Texas Health Resources was an early adopter of the RTWM solution and provided feedback to help fine-tune the solution prior to its official launch. Leaders from Texas Health Resources will present their experience as part of the launch at HFMA Annual, which will draw more than 3,000 attendees.

“Many healthcare systems are experiencing shrinking margins due to increased operating costs largely driven by labor, especially as it relates to the increase in agency staff as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Ryan Self, Vice President of Advisory Services at Strata. “This has become an industry wide problem many leaders are struggling to combat, which is why we developed the RTWM tool.”

“The ability to access accurate and timely data is key to success when it comes to staffing and scheduling in health systems,” said John Martino, Chief Executive Officer at Strata. “By utilizing our existing platform, we have created something that will not only help organizations mitigate their labor expenses but will also enable an integrated workflow for nurse managers and executives within a health system. By tackling the staffing challenges providers face daily, nursing leaders can drive improved staff satisfaction allowing nurses to provide better patient care and health systems can better navigate the current environment.”

At HFMA Annual, Strata representatives will be available at Booth 125 to demonstrate the new tool and discuss challenges, opportunities and how the new product will help Strata’s current clients and prospects.


*source: StrataSphere®, Strata’s comparative analytics network

About Strata Decision Technology

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help healthcare providers better analyze, plan, and perform in support of caring for their community and reducing the cost of care. Our customer base includes over 2,000 hospitals and over 400 healthcare delivery systems. Founded in 1996, our mission is to Help Heal Healthcare™. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com.

Contacts
Hannah Fier
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Customer feedback designates Strata the market leader for its decision support, financial planning solutions

CHICAGO – February 08, 2023 – Strata Decision Technology (Strata), a pioneer and leader in the development of cloud-based financial planning, analytics and performance tools for healthcare, today announced that the company has once again ranked Best in KLAS, as part of the 2023 Best in KLAS: Software and Services report from KLAS Research.

With a customer satisfaction score of 92.3 out of 100, Strata has been named the market leader for Business Decision Support for the 17th consecutive year – the longest running streak in KLAS history. In a category new to Best in KLAS, Strata has also been named the market leader for Financial Planning & Analysis, with a customer satisfaction score of 87.6 out of 100.

“The 2023 Best in KLAS report highlights the top-performing healthcare IT solutions as determined by extensive evaluations and conversations with thousands of healthcare providers,” said Adam Gale, KLAS CEO. “These distinguished winners have demonstrated exceptional dedication to improving and innovating the industry, and their efforts are recognized through their inclusion in this report. Congratulations to all the winning vendors for setting the bar for excellence in healthcare IT! KLAS continues to be committed to creating transparency and helping providers make informed decisions through our accurate, honest, and impartial reporting.”

The annual Best in KLAS ratings are based on feedback from tens of thousands of interviews with healthcare providers conducted throughout the year evaluating their level of satisfaction with over 1,000 healthcare information technology applications. The company’s long streak ranked as Best in KLAS, and its designation in a brand new category this year, reflects over 25 years of work providing planning solutions and services to hospitals and health system customers.  

“We are honored for our solutions to rank #1 in Business Decision Support for the 17th consecutive year, and to receive Best in KLAS in the emerging category of Financial Planning & Analysis. As we celebrate these incredible accomplishments, we are so grateful to our network of 2,000 hospital and 400 health system partners who implement and trust our technology to help them better care for their communities through improved financial planning and performance,” said John Martino, Chief Executive Officer of Strata. “Receiving the Best in KLAS distinction for Financial Planning for the first time, especially during such a challenging and uncertain era involving labor shortages and speculations of a recession, is a major achievement for our entire team, and we look forward to continuing the work we do with our customers to provide the best financial support in the years ahead.”

Strata is a cloud-based platform that helps healthcare providers better plan, analyze and perform, driving margin to fuel their clinical mission. With a customer base representing over 400 health systems and more than 2,000 hospitals, Strata helps hospitals and health systems separate the signal from the noise, providing unique insight to enable data-driven decisions that improve both clinical and financial performance. 

Customer Commentary  

In determining its rankings, KLAS collects quantitative and qualitative feedback from healthcare providers regarding the applications that they use. The following are a few of the comments from Strata customers, reported by KLAS:

StrataJazz® Decision Support

  • Implementation and Training: “The vendor provided the best implementation service that we have ever experienced. It was exceptional. The vendor’s service was timely and robust, and the vendor taught us a lot. There wasn’t a single question that we could ask that wasn’t already documented very clearly. The vendor has a wealth of training information for the system.” Director, December 2022
  • Reporting and Functionality: “Users really like being able to drill down on data in real time. It is easy for users to put reports together in StrataJazz Decision Support. Putting together reports is even easy for folks who aren’t deep-diving users or IT geeks that spend a lot of time in reporting. The system is robust, and we have a lot of data feeds, so the number of fields we can query is huge. The tool is very helpful, especially for research activities. The biggest advantage for me personally is being able to see where we have opportunities for performance improvement by payer or within service lines or divisions. There are a lot of ways to cut the data. We could do that in our previous system, but we had to download everything to Excel and cut the data manually. CFO, April 2022
  • Data Access and Adoption: “The solution is an extremely easy-to-use tool. It makes it simple for us to prove the accuracy of our data. With the solution’s data, we can enroll providers, clinicians, and service leaders. We are able to leverage the results of our information to drive outcomes in a way that we haven’t been able to with other systems.” Director, December 2022
  • Tool Usability: “The cost module is really streamlined. It is very easy to use in reporting, and we use it heavily. When I compare it to another tool, that tool doesn’t let me do half the things I am used to doing in StrataJazz Decision Support. The other tool is frustrating because I can’t report the same way. Strata Decision Technology’s reporting tools are very robust. Manager, December 2022

StrataJazz® Financial Planning

  • Automated, Integrated Platform: “With the system, we don’t have to do upgrades. Every time we log in, the vendor gives us a snapshot of all the changes. We are not on a certain version; we are always on the latest and greatest. We are very happy with the financial-planning piece. The system is a dynamic tool that allows us to adopt a budgeting or planning process that meets the needs of our organization. The system changed our ability to understand where we make money and where we lose money, so the system was a game changer for us. Before we implemented the cost accounting system and all the integrated pieces, we didn’t understand how much it would cost to do a certain procedure, but now, we do.” VP/Other Executive, May 2022
  • Agile Planning: “StrataJazz Financial Planning allows us to be a lot more agile. It allows us to model a lot of different scenarios. We are also able to pivot pretty quickly and calculate the impact of certain things that we are going to target or try to do throughout the year. With regard to management reporting, the system allows us to constantly interact with department managers. Every month we are able to push out scorecards for metrics to all our department managers via email. That process is all automated and super easy. Department managers are then able to review their financials, and we actually ask that the managers provide commentary. Everything feeds into our planning. We are able to see the biggest variances at the department level and the course corrections the departments are trying to make, and then we are able to apply that information, if applicable, to our rolling forecast. With StrataJazz Financial Planning, we can adjust quickly to whatever we may need.” Manager, July 2022
  • Relationship & Support:“Strata Decision Technology is constantly reaching out to us and checking on how we are doing. They host user groups where their customers are provided an opportunity to share their best practices, what they are doing, and how they are using the tools. We get written communications from them, and they share articles and other communications with us. If we have an issue or we are uncertain about something, we reach out to the vendor, and we get very quick responses. I have never had an occasion where I have had to run anything up the chain. The vendor schedules executive touchpoints with our leadership to talk through issues and see how things are going. The quality of support given is a strong suit of the vendor.” Director, August 2022

The full 2023 Best in KLAS: Software and Services report is available at www.klasresearch.com.
To learn more about or set up a demonstration of Strata solutions, click here.

About KLAS

KLAS is a data-driven company on a mission to improve the world’s healthcare by enabling provider and payer voices to be heard and counted. Working with thousands of healthcare professionals, KLAS collects insights on software, services, and medical equipment to deliver reports, trending data, and statistical overviews. KLAS data is accurate, honest, and impartial. The research directly reflects the voice of healthcare professionals and acts as a catalyst for improving vendor performance. To learn more about KLAS, visit KLASresearch.com.

About Strata Decision Technology

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help healthcare providers better analyze, plan, and perform in support of caring for their community and reducing the cost of care. Our customer base includes over 2,000 hospitals and over 400 healthcare delivery systems. Founded in 1996, our mission is to Help Heal HealthcareTM. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com.

Finance and IT experts shared trends, ideas and tactics at virtual event as Strata released new report on the state of the U.S. healthcare system

CHICAGO, October 13, 2022 – Over 2,400 attendees from more than 400 healthcare systems and 2,000 hospitals across the nation came together for LIFT22: The Strata Users Summit, which was held virtually on October 10-12. At this year’s event, healthcare leaders attended three days of sessions to discuss best practices surrounding Strata’s #1 in KLAS, cloud-based StrataJazz® platform, as well as its EPSi on-premise solution, and to give a comprehensive look at industry trends.

“Hospitals and healthcare systems across the country are still tackling challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, while also facing an ongoing labor shortage crisis,” said John Martino, Chief Executive Officer of Strata. “It’s important to talk about what these health systems are facing and how we can support them in all facets of their business. Our virtual conference brings together healthcare professionals across our customer network to share best practices and discuss strategies for the future.”

StrataSphere® Industry Report Released

During LIFT22, Strata released its latest industry report – Signals, Trends and KPIs: The Changing Face of Healthcare Finance. This research provides an overview of the current financial and operational health of hospitals and health systems. The report leverages data from StrataSphere, a healthcare provider research and comparative analytics collaborative representing a cohort of over 180 health systems with 1,100 hospitals from Strata’s customer base. Key findings from this research include the following:

  • Margin on patient operations is near zero for more than half of health systems: This is a function of expenses increasing due to rising labor costs while revenue remains largely flat. While 2022 YTD median operating margin is 4.6%, there is a large degree of spread, with nearly one third of the health systems analyzed operating in the red. This represents a significant decline in performance when compared to 7% in the baseline year of 2019 and 7.9% in 2021. Additionally, 2022 YTD operating margin on patient revenue is down 58% compared to 2019 pre-COVID operating margins and down 68% compared to 2021.
  • Labor, supply and drug costs are up while patient acuity remains largely unchanged: For acute care hospitals, the 2022 YTD median inpatient total cost per encounter is up 29.4% compared to 2019 and up 7.2% compared to 2021. For these hospitals, the median cost of direct patient care per encounter is up 54.3% compared to 2019. Additionally, the median supply expense per encounter has increased 17% since 2019 and the median drug expense has increased 33% for the same period.
  • The convergence of COVID-19, regulations and staffing constraints has shifted volumes with sustained and likely permanent impact: In 2022, monthly inpatient volumes are down 5-14% compared to 2019. Outpatient volumes increased when compared to 2019, however if COVID-19 testing and vaccinations are removed, outpatient volumes didn’t start to exceed 2019 levels until March 2021 – fifteen months later. Lastly, emergency department (ED) visits have not exceeded 2019 pre-COVID volumes. In 2022, monthly ED volumes are down 3-19% compared to 2019. Further, ED acuity has increased minimally as measured by the distribution of CPT codes.
  • Key high-margin procedures and service lines continue to shift to the outpatient and alternative settings: This shift was initially driven by the high volume of COVID-19 patients in the early pandemic, leading to capacity constraints in the inpatient setting. Now, inpatient staffing constraints and regulatory shifts are sustaining it. As an example, in 2021, 298 procedures were removed from the “inpatient only” rule and then reinstated as inpatient only in 2022. This exemplifies the ongoing disruption of volumes and site of care issues.
  • Shifting sites of care have had a profound impact on cost structures, margins and competition: For example, orthopedics volume is down compared to 2019. Inpatient volume for the Osteoarthritis CARE Family (where most total knee replacement patients are attributed) is down 80% in 2022 YTD compared to 2019.

“The StrataSphere data shows the U.S. healthcare industry is comprised of ‘haves and have nots,’ with far too many on the ‘have not’ side. While some systems are doing well, often due to non-core patient care, a full 1/3 of the industry is losing money with no signs of improvement. This could become catastrophic for many communities,” said Steve Lefar, Chief Strategy Officer at Strata. “Inpatient volumes have not yet returned to pre-COVID levels. Cases are moving away from profitable procedures, and outpatient volumes have only made slight gains since 2019. Health systems, regulators and industry analysts must rethink how they model a variety of future state scenarios. We hope a data set like StrataSphere can help them as they strategize for a profoundly altered future.”

LIFT22 Offers 20+ CPE-Accredited Educational Sessions

A forum for healthcare leaders to share success stories and best practices related to financial planning, analytics and performance, this year’s LIFT22 conference was 100% virtual and 100% free. Attendees had the opportunity to select from over 20 CPE-accredited sessions for a deeper dive into specific topics. These sessions, led by members of Strata’s customer network, educated attendees about best practices, new design and product efficiencies. Sessions included:

  • Innovations in RealTime Workforce Management: Executives from Texas Health Resources discussed the impact that Strata has made on the organization in driving accountability, financial stewardship and labor efficiency as they look to optimize their staffing practices in the face of a national labor shortage.
  • Learn How Your Peers Are Using Dynamic Planning: Intermountain Healthcare shared their perspective and experience shifting towards a more agile dynamic planning approach, integrating key insights from their decision support tool to drive future strategy.
  • How East Tennessee Children’s Hospital is Leveraging Data Advanced Analytics Dashboards in StrataJazz: East Tennessee Children’s Hospital presented highlights related to their journey to create a new governance structure and stand up analytics and dashboards within the hospital.
  • Revenue Analytics – Panel Discussion: A panel of healthcare experts from Strata and Edward Elmhurst Health educated audiences about implementing revenue analytics tools to drive organizational advancement.

2022 LEAP Award Winners Announced at LIFT22

Strata was proud to present the 2022 LEAP (Lead, Excel, Achieve, and Progress) Award, which recognizes healthcare organizations with outstanding performance in the areas of finance and strategy, to Texas Health Resources and Carilion Clinic.

Texas Health Resources was recognized for their work using the EPSi tool to take action on data with crucial dashboards and custom analytics for understanding performance, volumes and efficiency. With labor continuing to make up nearly 50 percent of a health system’s operating expense, this organization engaged their frontline leaders with live data for better staffing decisions using a new workforce management process and tool.

Carilion Clinic was recognized as a top StrataJazz user for their work creating a culture of cost discipline that led to the identification of over $9 million in cost savings. By engaging C-suite executive sponsors to help drive the adoption of cost improvement, the team has implemented initiatives across service lines to drive meaningful and sustained cost savings across their enterprise.

About Strata Decision Technology

Strata Decision Technology provides a cloud-based platform for software and service solutions to help healthcare providers better analyze, plan and perform in support of caring for their community and reducing the cost of care. Our customer base includes over 2,000 hospitals and over 400 healthcare delivery systems. Founded in 1996, our mission is to Help Heal HealthcareTM. For more information, please go to www.stratadecision.com