Traditional risk concerns could see benefit from ACA

For traditional risk management concerns, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) actually might offer hope, says Ruselle Robinson, JD, an attorney at Boston-based Posternak Blankstein & Lund. A goal of the ACA is to improve quality of care and make it more patient-centered while reducing costs, so success in those areas should result in lower risk and liability for providers, he says.

“The encouraging news is that the intention is to reduce errors and improve quality of care, so if all of that comes off as planned, it should bode well for traditional risk concerns,” Robinson says.

Robinson urges risk managers to focus on the potential benefits from the ACA, particularly the effort to promote best practices across the industry.

“People get accustomed to doing things a certain way, and risk managers certainly know how difficult it can be to get people out of their habits and to adopt a new way of doing things that has been proven to improve quality of care and patient safety,” Robinson says. “The coming changes from healthcare reform could be the catalyst that helps you improve some of these processes.”