Approximately a quarter of all U.S. non-for-profit hospitals operate with negative margins. In this unsustainable situation, revenue cycle management (RCM), the business process that drives revenue collection and accounts receivable administration, becomes increasingly crucial for healthcare organizations. RCM is at the center of an incredibly complex network of external and internal links, and its success chiefly depends on a smooth flow of timely, accurate information. While IS research increasingly focuses on clinical health information technologies (HITs), IT’s potential as an enabler of hospitals’ administrative activities remains by and large unexplored. To advance research into administrative HIT, we draw on Pettigrew’s (1987, 1990) theoretical contextualist framework of organizational transformation. Contextualist inquiry is particularly well suited to the study of complex organizational change processes, and it affords a comprehensive view on the opportunities and challenges involved in transforming IT-enabled RCM. Leveraging these strengths, we review the diverse body of academic literature related to RCM transformation and juxtapose the findings with the prevalent discourse in practitioner publications on RCM. These analyses reveal major gaps between extant theory and the problems faced in practice. In conclusion, we draw on these insights to propose research themes and theoretical lenses that can help bridge the gap between theory and practice.
Mindel, Vitali and Mathiassen, Lars
"Contextualist Inquiry into IT-enabled Hospital Revenue Cycle Management: Bridging Research and Practice,"
Journal of the Association for Information Systems:
12, Article 1.
Available at: http://aisel.aisnet.org/jais/vol16/iss12/1