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CHICAGO, Feb. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The demand for senior and long-term care continues to rise as the U.S. senior population grows. According to the Department of Health and Human Services' Administration on Aging, as of 2009, the number of people 65 years or older was 39.6 million. They represented 12.9 percent of the U.S. population then, about one in every eight Americans. And, by 2030, this group will be approximately 72.1 million, more than twice the reported number in 2000.
McGladrey's Strategies to address growing pains for long-term care organizations reports that senior and long-term care facility leaders are well aware of these urgent statistics, and many have planned to strategically grow their organizations by expanding facilities, merging with other care centers and becoming multisite complexes to address current and expected demands. However, for many long-term care organizations this growth brings challenges such as streamlining operational and patient-facing functions across a multisite environment and updating inefficient, antiquated processes. These challenges can be a catalyst to skyrocketing costs, unrealized revenue and degradation of resident or patient services.
One key to avoid escalating costs in a complex, multisite organization is by more strategically managing your organization's spending. This starts with a spend analysis to help an organization pinpoint its spend, revealing inconsistent practices and illuminating ways to drive down supplier spend. Leveraging shared services over operations such as the business office or resident services can also optimize efficiencies. In addition, using technology to enhance processes, such as implementing an enterprise resource planning solution, can make a critical difference in improving overall operations.
Senior and long-term care organizations that are grounded in patient care and committed to improvement will continue to look for ways to refine operations. Being mindful of spend drivers, process and operational redundancies and inconsistencies, as well as ensuring the mountains of data are leveraged and utilized to create a high-quality experience for the patient will help health care organizations succeed.