Trump and his impact on the healthcare structured cabling market

Healthcare, specifically the Affordable Care Act (ACA), was a central topic healthcarethroughout the recent U.S. presidential campaigns. Though we can’t say how just yet, Donald Trump’s election will likely bring change to the U.S. healthcare market. Trump campaign promises pointed to repealing and replacing the ACA with something completely different; however, as time goes on, it is expected that at least parts of the ACA will remain.

Over the past several years, the U.S. healthcare industry has been consumerized through initiatives like the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). These initiatives changed the way that physicians are paid from a volume-based system to a value-based system. This has forced providers to reduce the cost of care while improving quality and patient outcomes. These cost reductions and the concern for the quality of patient care is likely to continue, and perhaps become even more important during the Trump administration.

Based on what we have heard thus far, analysts predict the following for health care under Trump’s policies:

  • There will be more of an emphasis on price transparency for medical procedures and other healthcare costs.
  • The Medical Productivity Index* (MPI) is expected to increase by 2% by 2026.
  • MACRA is likely to continue.
  • We will see greater consumer responsibility for healthcare costs, creating a more competitive market.
  • The number of uninsured people will increase by as many as 25 million, with conservative estimates hovering around 20 million.

Impact on the Healthcare Structured Cabling Market

What do these things mean for the healthcare structured cabling market? We can expect continued growth in the healthcare industry; however, it may look different than over the past decade.

  • Large hospital new construction is likely to decline. At the same time, hospitals are likely to continue investing in technology. This technology will deliver operational efficiencies and improved precision and diagnostics, which will drive down costs.
  • The amount of data will continue to increase, and speed of retrieval and analysis will be more important than ever. This forces the need for high-speed cabling and large-scale storage, especially as hospital groups continue to acquire independent facilities, creating more centralized systems.
  • Healthcare IT and facilities groups will have less budget to work with while being expected to deliver the highest quality of service to the organization.

Regardless of whether the ACA (also known as ‘Obamacare’) is repealed or not, it appears that the emphasis on value-based care will continue to grow. As structured cabling professionals, it is our responsibility to guide the healthcare community towards solutions that are both cost-effective and deliver the resilience and performance that a medical environment demands.

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*The Medical Industry Leadership Institute developed the Medical Productivity Index to measure the productivity of insurance-financed medical care. The MPI analyzes the health status achieved by a patient relative to the amount of resources invested in that patient’s care. The higher the index number, the better the return on investment. Care through Medicaid produces a low index value, whereas health savings accounts generally produce the highest index value.

Protect Equipment and Infrastructure with the New Break-Away Adapter

Panduit Break-Away Outlet Application

The Break-Away Adapter from Panduit

Panduit has introduced the Break-Away Adapter, an innovative solution that releases under force to eliminate tripping hazards, protect expensive equipment, and prevent damage to infrastructure.

The Break-Away Adapter attaches to a standard copper patch cord, and then plugs into either a piece of equipment or an RJ45 outlet. When pulling force is applied – such as when a medical cart is rolled away from the wall in a hospital room – the adapter releases. This prevents equipment being pulled off carts or tables, or jacks being pulled out of the wall, and avoids costly damage.

The adapter meets TIA standards for Category 6A performance, and is backward compatible to also work with Category 6 and 5e channels. It is rated for 750 release cycles, meaning the cord can be reconnected many times and maintain its performance.

Panduit designed the adapter for the medical community, where equipment is often wheeled between patient rooms. However, the Break-Away Adapter can be used in any environment where portable equipment is connected to an Ethernet port, such as conference rooms and classrooms. In hospitals alone, the cost associated with falls adds up. One recent study found that 30-50 percent of falls in hospitals resulted in injuries, which adds 6.3 days to the average hospital stay, and costs $14,000 per fall. Adding the Break-Away Adapter to equipment on medical carts eliminates one of the tripping hazards that can lead to these falls.

“Even as wireless use is growing, many customers are looking for a solution to a very real wired issue,” said Dennis Renaud, vice president of Panduit Enterprise Business. “The Break-Away Adapter is a simple solution that can prevent expensive accidents. This is a great example of Panduit innovation at work, solving real problems in the workplace.”

For more information on the Break-Away Adapter, visit www.panduit.com/break-away.

The Health of Your Network Matters

Nursing HomeHospitals, clinics, extended care facilities, and physicians’ offices are facing increasing pressure to improve the quality of healthcare while decreasing costs.  In response, health care providers are adopting greater use of electronic medical records, automated equipment and building automation systems. As a result, the number of users requiring network access through the use of portable and mobile devices such as handheld units and laptops to manage patient records, monitor clinical applications and reference workplace requirements is extending the need for campus wide network access.

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