Comprehensive local payment by results solution simplifies activity and income monitoring to support improved financial management
29 September, 2009 – Ardentia has launched its Service Level Agreement (SLA) module, a solution designed to simplify monitoring and reporting on income and activity for NHS Trusts and to support improved financial management.
The SLA module provides a single information service covering both national and local tariff contracts and activity, enabling Trusts to generate data for invoicing and Commissioners to check what they are being charged, as well as handling future plans and comparing them with actual values. This gives a more accurate indication of whether care is being delivered as planned.
By uploading contract details onto the SLA data warehouse and defining the rules that link contracts to activity data and whether the payment tariff is national PbR or non-PbR, the module provides a powerful and flexible means of accessing information about activity and its financial value from a single source.
An additional benefit of the SLA module is that it is built on Ardentia’s proven HealthWare data warehousing technology, meaning staff have access to powerful in-built data validation and transformation capabilities, giving them access to the high quality data needed to support robust Financial management.
According to David Beeson, development director at healthcare business intelligence specialist Ardentia: “From a Trust point of view, accurate generation of income levels from activity volumes is vital, as is the ability to forecast future levels to ensure they are deploying appropriate levels of resource. From the Commissioner standpoint, it is crucial to be able to check charges against what should have been generated by the volumes treated and to be able to forecast likely expenditure.
“The Ardentia SLA Module allows both Trusts and Commissioners to forecast the financial implications of their plans, and to calculate the financial values corresponding to care activity volumes, taking account of both PbR-based figures and locally negotiated values by casemix, Trust, Commissioner and other appropriate aspects the care delivered, such as whether it is elective or non-elective, inpatient or outpatient, and any associated diagnoses or procedure codes.
“The Ardentia solution also allows users to drill down to patient level, to track any anomalies back to their source. This gives managers and clinicians the ability to analyse actual activity against planned activity in order to identify any variances and improve healthcare management.”
The module is currently being trialled at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust and the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, where it is being used to support improved management and robust financial control. It will then be rolled out to other Ardentia clients among both Trusts and PCTs.
Ardentia has designed its SLA module to be easy to implement and configure using template concepts, and to save valuable resource time through its user-definable reporting, ensuring clinicians and managers get targeted and relevant information to support informed management decisions.
Stafford based Ardentia employs 58 staff and works exclusively on the delivery of software for healthcare. With over 100 clients in the NHS, it is the largest dedicated supplier of such systems, with customers at all levels of the health service: hospital trusts, Primary Care Trusts, Strategic Health Authorities and national service suppliers such as Connecting for Health.
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