In Central Visayas alone, schools and universities in Cebu are producing large numbers of highly-trained licensed healthcare professionals, particularly nurses, every year— graduates that top the Board Licensing Examination. Since the decline of overseas demand for nurses, more and more healthcare graduates turn to alternative career options particularly in the healthcare outsourcing sector.

In 2012, the Philippines is geared to become one of the leading service providers in the growing healthcare information management outsourcing industry. The country ensures the number and competency of manpower resources to satisfy the growing demand in healthcare outsourcing services through its large availability of licensed healthcare professionals.

The healthcare outsourcing market in the Philippines has grown and evolved in recent years, which now includes high-value services such as:

Medical Transcription

A medical transcriptionist converts all medical information into electronic format to aid in easy and fast management of patient history and other medical data. This ensures the availability of pertinent research for fast and accurate analysis of the medical efficiencies of drugs and services. As one of the pioneering healthcare services outsourced in the Philippines, Filipino medical transcriptionists have long served and satisfied this sector.

Read related article:   Knowledge Process Outsourcing: Moving Beyond Transcription Services

Disease Management

The foundation of disease management programs is the call center, enabling the monitoring of patients’ health by phone and the Internet. Highly-trained Filipino nurses in call centers are more than capable of educating callers about their disease, delivering supplies, handling insurance claims; and supporting the existing nurse staff by doing data gathering, data entry, follow up, and contact tasks.

Read related article:   BPO Real Time Outsourcing Customer Engagement – Giving your Customers More!

Clinical Coding

Clinical Coding encompasses the function of analyzing clinical statements and assigning standard clinical codes to diagnoses and procedures in every occasion, the results of which are used locally and internationally by governments, private organizations and international agencies for various medical services and resource.

Read related article:   How to Successfully Transition to Outsourcing

Pharmaceutical Benefits Management

Various service centers in the Philippines are offering services in pharmaceutical benefits management as administrator of prescription drug programs— processing prescription drug claims, collaborating with pharmacies, and arranging for discounts and rebates with manufacturers to obtain lower prices for their prescription drugs.

Read related article:  Outsourcing Services Effectively

NorthernWorx KPO, a local outsourcing company based in Cebu City, Philippines aims to serve this growing sector by expanding on its knowledge process services, as well as establishing its medical and healthcare information management services through FirstAide. Additionally, FirstAide has been recently established by the City of Cebu as its official emergency call center, providing citywide capability to receive and transmit priority communications traffic during an imminent or actual emergency event.

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The Role of Offshore Outsourcing in Healthcare

On March 9, 2012, in Outsourcing, by Business Development Group
Countries like the Philippines recognizes the potential and is gearing up its infrastructure to attract organizations from the west to send manual and labor intensive work for processing. The other major driver for this is the vast difference in cost of labor between the east and the west. While this dynamic has existed in the past, the main impediment to this has been technology. Developing countries did not have the technology infrastructure in place to offer such services. This is rapidly changing and India in particular has taken the lead by ramping up telecommunications backbone to enable such initiatives.

Countries like the Philippines recognizes the potential and is gearing up its infrastructure to attract organizations from the west to send manual and labor intensive work for processing.

A recent sub trend in outsourcing is offshore  outsourcing. Offshore outsourcing implies going to other countries for these services at lower costs. While this has become an important trend in core software and large application development (most large software companies in the US have dedicated development centers in the Philippines) it has also started to gather steam in the BPO segment. It is very likely that these BPO initiatives will move in the same direction as it has for the software industry.

Countries like the Philippines recognizes the potential and is gearing up its infrastructure to attract organizations from the west to send manual and labor intensive work for processing. The other major driver for this is the vast difference in cost of labor between the east and the west. While this dynamic has existed in the past, the main impediment to this has been technology. Developing countries did not have the technology infrastructure in place to offer such services. This is rapidly changing and India in particular has taken the lead by ramping up telecommunications backbone to enable such initiatives.

The following are the key drivers and factors for growth in offshore BPO:

Globalization  and Consolidation

As organizations become more global, they are looking at the most efficient, least cost operational model. Mergers and acquisitions also results in redundant back-office processes, often leads to business functions being consolidated and carried out at the lowest possible costs with the greatest efficiency. Sending back-office transactional functions (which do not add value from a business perspective) to countries like the Philippines enables them to streamline operations.

Read related article: BPO Real Time Outsourcing Customer Engagement – Giving your Customers More!

Reduce Back-Office Cost Further

Organizations who are already outsourcing business processes to other vendors in the US are investigating the possibility of reducing these costs further. BPO vendors in the US are tying up with other vendors in the Philippines and reducing their internal processing costs. The benefits are hard to ignore.

Read related article: How to Successfully Transition to Outsourcing

Lower Labor Costs at Better Service Levels

Labor costs in the Philippines are substantially lower than those in the US. Hence an offshore BPO initiative results in savings that translates into shareholder value. Moreover, the workforce that carries out back-office processing is more qualified than its western counterparts, this results in higher service levels in terms of accuracy and productivity.

Read related articleOutsourcing Services Effectively

The Pervasive Nature of Technology

The internet and advances in telecommunication have made it possible to open remote BPO centers half way across the globe. The operating is one which provides the same results as if processing was being done in one location and the customer does not notice any difference. The only physical difference, albeit a shrinking one, is that of geography.

Read related article: Call Center as a Marketing Channel

Potential to Offer Multiple Choice to Clients

For existing BPO vendors, having an offshore center or a tie-up with an offshore processing center or a tie-up with an offshore BPO vendor enables them to go back to their existing clients and offer the same services, with higher service levels and at a lower price point. Some of the larger players are already taking the first mover advantage by going this route. It is only a matter of time before others follow.

Read related article: Philippine Outsourcing: What is a BPO Virtual Captive?

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