B2B integration in healthcare systems has become increasingly important in modern healthcare systems to optimize various aspects and serve patients well.
Digital transformation has reached almost every sector, including healthcare, to provide effective services, facilities, and care for patients.
Modern healthcare systems are advanced to serve society and meet evolving needs by delivering comprehensive healthcare for every individual in need.
However, without effective healthcare systems, healthcare institutions would face lots of management issues. While embracing digital transformation, they can get overwhelmed with new initiatives and technologies that can further bring complexities.
Ultimately, patients could suffer.
With B2B integration in healthcare systems, you can enhance their functionalities, performance, accessibility, and other capabilities to further ease the convenience and care for patients and their families.
Whether it is exchanging data or maintaining information transparency, B2B has made significant improvements in the modern healthcare system.
So, let me help you understand how you can enhance patient outcomes through B2B integration through this post.
What Is B2B Integration of Healthcare Systems?
B2B integration of healthcare systems facilitates seamlessly automating, exchanging, and integrating patient information, product or service data, and other details between healthcare institutes, clinics, hospitals, etc., and B2B companies like insurance companies, third-party suppliers, software providers, etc., without security and compliance risks.
Here, the healthcare information you will deal with includes medical records, patient personal information, medical claims, bills, and so on.
The main motive behind integrating with healthcare systems is to provide better care to patients and families by offering tailored services. Instead of B2B companies going directly to healthcare seekers to serve them with suitable services and products, these companies collaborate with healthcare providers to enhance patient care with suitable products and services.
In short, healthcare B2B integration enables you to share patient details with greater accuracy, completeness, and consistency.
However, implementing new technology in the healthcare system can be a difficult task as many healthcare providers still rely on paper-based communication. But if you want to increase efficiency, healthcare B2B integration is helpful by automating processes and making significant improvements.
To perform B2B integration of healthcare systems, organizations leverage modern technologies, methodologies, protocols, applications, etc. This ensures healthcare data reaches faster while keeping in mind security risks like man-in-the-middle attacks, ransomware, etc., along with compliance issues.
Today, more and more healthcare organizations and institutions are adopting B2B integration as it promotes data transparency among healthcare entities and lowers costs that otherwise were wasted on manual, time-consuming processes. This is why its future seems bright as of now.
Many components play major roles when conducting the B2B integration of healthcare systems. These are:
#1. Electronic Data Interchange
Electronic data interchange (EDI) is one of the vital components of healthcare B2B integration because it enables healthcare entities to securely exchange healthcare documents among themselves.
This creates a standardized environment where healthcare organizations can easily communicate and perform transactions
#2. Application Programming Interface
APIs take the central stage in healthcare B2B integration. It enables effortless integration of data, data sharing, and communication between various applications, tools, and software with security.
#3. Health Information Exchange
Health information exchange (HIE) serves as another crucial component of B2B integration. It enables healthcare institutes and businesses to share data electronically among themselves. HIE aims to improve patient care and coordination with advanced capabilities.
#4. Claim Processing and Billing
The B2B integration of the healthcare system also eases healthcare claim and billing processes. It helps automate the process of submission, processing, and settlement of claims that payers have claimed towards healthcare services.
This component makes sure that the healthcare providers reimburse all healthcare service bills on time and with correctness and precision.
#5. Supply Chain Management
B2B integration in supply chain management has been a boon for medical institutes because it streamlines the ordering, distribution, and management of all the pharmaceuticals, drugs, medical equipment, and supplies.
In addition, supply chain management integration enables organizations to properly manage all their stocks, products, services, inventory, and so on. It also ensures that suppliers and healthcare providers collaborate without friction. This way, quality products and services reach patients in need on time.
#6. Interoperability Standards and Protocols
Interoperability standards and protocols such as FHIR and HL7 are essential components of the B2B integration of healthcare systems. These allow data exchange and communication among healthcare systems and B2B businesses easily.
The main motive behind these standards and protocols is to create a standardized data format for sharing information and maintaining compatibility between different systems.
#7. Extract, Transform, and Load
ETL – Extract (E), Transform (T), and Load (L) – is another component of B2B integration that deals with the extraction of data from different data sources and converting them into usable formats.
ETL also involves loading the converted data into all targeted healthcare systems and ensuring they are accessible to everyone. Whether it is text, images, or video, ETL in B2B integration serves as an essential aspect as it can be utilized for a variety of data.
#8. Data Security
B2B integration of healthcare systems also involves the incorporation of robust data security and privacy management to safeguard all healthcare information during transmission.
In this component, organizations need to implement reliable and advanced security measures so that no one can intercept patient data during data exchange. It also enables healthcare systems to adhere to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations and maintain data integrity.
This way, no security or privacy issues can arise in your systems, and you face no loss of money or reputation.
How to Do Healthcare System B2B Integration
When performing healthcare B2B integration, you will need to do it in multiple steps. These steps together ensure that patient data exchange happens smoothly between different healthcare entities.
Although B2B integration may vary according to the organization’s requirements, here I present you the typical steps that many organizations follow.
Planning and Assessment
In the first step, you will need to carefully assess and understand all your B2B integration requirements. Keep in mind your main objective and decide the course of action accordingly. In addition, check the integration compatibility of your healthcare systems and applications.
Choose Integration Technologies
Now comes the step where you must select B2B integration technologies, tools, and processes according to your integration requirements and compatibility. API, EDI, and HIE are the best options for integration.
Likewise, you will need to select an interoperability standard like FHIR or HL7, as they will ensure seamless patient information exchange.
Process Patient Data
Once you have selected the integration technology, it is time to map all the patient data between different healthcare systems and applications. As a result, you will be able to easily standardize the format of the data so that you can quickly share it with other systems.
After standardizing the data format, you should then convert the data into a standard format used in the healthcare industry and ensure seamless data exchange.
Perform B2B Integration
In this step, you use B2B integration technologies and start establishing a data communication channel among healthcare entities.
Now, start integrating different healthcare systems with patient data. You will then need to implement a connectivity mechanism and a protocol that will enable secure data exchange.
Implement Security Measures
Establishing the channel alone won’t be enough. After integrating, you will also have to implement various data security measures and encryption protocols to ensure the safe communication of all patient information.
Apart from implementing security measures, you should also comply with HIPAA requirements, as it will help you to maintain patient privacy and data integrity.
Onboard B2B Healthcare Partners
When the B2B integration is done, it is time to onboard the B2B healthcare partners to ensure effective collaboration and hassle-free data exchange.
However, you need to take a strategic approach while onboarding B2B healthcare partners so that data exchange processes remain smooth.
Applying AI automation in B2B integration will help you significantly improve overall efficiency and reduce any human error by automating redundant processes that otherwise consume a lot of time, effort, and money.
AI automation will simplify a lot of tasks like data availability, billing process, reimbursement, and many others. As a result, efficiency increases, and your work streamlines.
It is wise to conduct a thorough testing of the integration to ensure the accuracy and security of data communication among healthcare entities. You should also assess the integration process in various situations to ensure seamless data flow in the network.
Case Studies of B2B Integration of Healthcare System
Many healthcare institutes have highly benefited from the B2B integration of their healthcare systems. Here, I present to you some case studies of successful B2B integrations.
#1. Epic Systems’ HR Integration
The EHR system from Epic is a well-known B2B integration of healthcare systems where the vendor successfully integrates the EHR system with numerous hospitals, healthcare centers, and clinics.
Integrating EHR systems with different healthcare institutes has allowed easy transmission of patient data, better healthcare coordination, and improved healthcare delivery across various entities in the healthcare ecosystem.
#2. B2B Integration of Cerner and Surescript
A few years ago, Cerner, a top healthcare information technology brand, integrated its system with Surescripts, which is known for its colossal health information network.
The B2B integration with Cerner has facilitated the healthcare system to distribute prescription and medication history among healthcare institutes electronically.
This integration with healthcare information technology has allowed Surescripts to improve the medication management of patients and simplify the prescription exchange process. It also ensures that patient medical record remains safe by maintaining up-to-date information for healthcare providers.
Numerous healthcare organizations have integrated with HIEs or health information exchanges to create a secure network for sharing patient’s medical records and other information.
The health information exchanges at the state level and regional level have successfully integrated with healthcare entities.
This B2B integration offers many benefits, including better healthcare coordination, population health management within specific geographic regions, and patient outcomes.
#2. Billing and Payments
A large number of healthcare payers and providers have opted for B2B integration with different solutions to ease the patient billing process, payment transactions, and processing of insurance and other claims.
Importantly, the B2B integration has also helped payers and providers to speed up the reimbursement process, curb administrative complexities, and boost the efficiency of financial transactions.
#3. Pharmaceutical Supply Chain
Numerous healthcare institutes and pharmaceutical supply chain organizations have implemented B2B integration so that they can efficiently procure, distribute, and manage pharmaceutical products.
Due to B2B integration, pharmaceutical and healthcare organizations have been able to curb traditional medication errors, optimize the supply chain process, and maintain high availability of medications for every patient.
Before ending this guide, I would like to introduce you to some tools that will help you enhance patient outcomes through B2B integration.
Healthcare System B2B Integration Tools
#1. Salesforce Health Cloud
Salesforce Health Cloud is a customer-first platform that helps you deliver optimum care to the patient while automating most business processes. It is built on a robust CRM platform and empowers you to manage every aspect of patients at lower costs.
Through this platform, you can connect with everyone on your team in real-time and deliver personalized care to each patient or healthcare seeker.
Health Cloud is designed to enhance productivity for every healthcare provider by automating their various health-related business operations and allowing their teams to focus on other essential tasks. The simplified interface also delivers numerous actionable insight that helps you customize the care for all healthcare seekers.
Salesforce offers two plans – Enterprise and Unlimited, with a price starting from $325 per month.
MyChart is a popular healthcare system that has helped more than 160 million healthcare seekers stay connected securely.
The platform offers an easy-to-use application through which users and healthcare providers can quickly access data related to medication, upcoming doctor appointments, and test results. In addition, it offers features like checking medical bills and estimating the cost of different tests.
Whether a patient is visiting a particular healthcare institute or multiple ones, it will show you all the details in one place. While sharing medical records with doctors or healthcare authorities, patients won’t have to worry about their data privacy as it uses advanced security features.
Getting an online diagnosis, video consultation, or sending a message to a doctor is made easy with this platform. Thus, healthcare givers and seekers can easily connect with each other from anywhere.
Another great thing I noticed about this platform is that it lets you manage appointments and medications for patients and family members.
Designed to optimize the clinical workflow more smartly and maximize productivity, TigerConnect is a well-known healthcare system meant to enhance patient outcomes.
The platform is a meticulously designed healthcare system that integrates with your hospital system to streamline every process and make patients available to every caregiver. It is a role-based collaboration software that enables easy access to patient data instantly for doctors. This way, they can prepare themselves and offer better diagnoses.
TigerConnect offers a modern alarm management and collaboration solution for the nurse team so that there is low alarm fatigue and staff turnover. With this platform, your team will be instantly alerted about patient needs, and the credit goes to its intelligently designed alerts and alarms.
Importantly, you can automate physician on-call scheduling and also distribute call assignments properly. In addition, this cloud-based application offers a scalable and well-integrated solution and can efficiently optimize your staff resources.
I hope that this article on healthcare B2B integration helps you understand key concepts. It also highlights all the details of the important components of B2B integration, some use cases, and successful case studies. In addition, you will know all the steps to follow to conduct B2B integration of healthcare systems.
Moreover, I have discussed some tools to facilitate integration. Thus, leverage B2B healthcare integration and explore how useful it can be for healthcare providers to facilitate improved patient care and enhance patient outcomes.