The Future of Clinical Documentation Industry

I was forwarded an email today from my ASP which is written by a company that helps MTSOs purchase and buy other MTSOs describing the industry and explaining reasons as to the changes happening. I read this and loved it, wanted to share.

I could NOT find the link to the blog post but will copy it here directly from the email I was forwarded:

The Changing Landscape in Clinical Documentation

In my last note I talked about the evolution of the clinical documentation business and why I thought it would survive. This past month two very significant events occurred further changing the landscape in the industry: (i) the closing of the Clinical Documentation Industry Association (MTIA) and (ii) the announced merger of Transcend Services with Nuance Communications. Does this change my mind?
Not really.
From a nostalgic perspective, these changes are a little melancholy. I attended my first MTIA conference in 1996 or so. It always seemed like a right of membership to complain about the annual dues versus the perceived benefits of MTIA. But it’s sad to see it gone and we’ll miss the annual meeting. With regard to Transcend, it has been a significant player in the medical transcription industry for over 15 years. Their management team did such a tremendous job of growing the business that Nuance just offered to purchase them for $29.50 per share ($300 million). Alas, in several months the Transcend name will also be gone.
From a business perspective, you have to wonder if these events forecast a bleak future for the industry. Are there now too few potential members with enough money to support an industry association? Is the number two player in the industry selling out before it’s too late?
Addressing the latter first, Nuance put their money where their mouth is by investing $300 million in the industry to buy Transcend. The name Transcend might go away, but the relationships with its clients and the vast majority of its employees (especially the MT’s) will remain intact. I know that the management team at Transcend is very smart, but I am also certain that the management team at Nuance is neither na├»ve nor stupid. They believe in the industry and that’s a good thing. Transcend acted in a manner they believed to be in the best interests of their shareholders, clients and employees. So did Nuance.
The closing of MTIA related in part to the consolidation in the industry. But, truth be told, most MTSO’s have not sold out. However, we just went through an unprecedented downturn in the economy and everyone had to find areas to cut back on expenses. On top of that the industry is undergoing rapid technological change and pricing declines affecting everyone in the business. In the end, paying dues to an industry association probably just wasn’t high on the list of many. MTIA did a great job for many years and we should thank all of the board members and the MTIA leadership for their efforts.
Change is a double edged sword. Kodak filed for bankruptcy, but FUJI Film is more successful than ever. Clinical documentation is not going away – it is changing. You have to be willing to invest the time, energy and money necessary to change with it. If you don’t want to do that, you owe it to yourself, your clients and your employees to consider taking the route that Transcend did. If you ever want to explore that or talk about what we are seeing, please give me a call.
John Suender, President
Suender M&A Advisors, LLC

I then went on to browse their site (and sign up for email alerts) and came across this article. The typos bother me, but the information that lies within is priceless.

Some Thoughts About the Future of the Clinical Documentation Industry

There are so many interesting, exciting (and sometimes downright frightening) things going on in our industry. We need to "go with the flow," reinvent ourselves if somethings not working, and the key to that IS knowledge.

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