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Emdeon gets high score in KLAS report

BY Alaric DeArment

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Healthcare research firm KLAS has given Emdeon an 89.4-point score in its Enterprise Patient Access report for this year, the healthcare technology company said Wednesday.

Emdeon said it scored highly among vendors offering software systems for preauthorization, verification, electronic orders management and other services when KLAS polled healthcare providers in connection with the report.

"Effectively managing patient access has always been critical for hospitals to ensure they will be paid appropriately for the services they provide," Emdeon EVP revenue cycle solutions Ulrich Brechbuhl said. "With millions more people becoming eligible for coverage under the [Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act], Emdeon continues to help our customers maximize their cash flow by providing solutions to ensure providers collect everything they are due from patients with existing benefits coverage, as well as get uninsured and underinsured patients enrolled in benefits."

Emdeon’s products include Patient Access Master and Emdeon Enrollment and Eligibility Services, which are designed to simplify the collection and validation of patient information and allow access to patient eligibility and financial informaiton before or during registration.

"As the single largest clinical, financial and administrative health information exchange in the United States, Emdeon is uniquely positioned to address the pending influx of currently uninsured and underinsured patients who may qualify for Medicaid or be able to access health insurance by purchasing coverage via the [Affordable Care Act] insurance exchangings beginning Jan. 1, 2014," Brechbuhl said.

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Integer Group: Consumers private-label purchases as much as previous year

BY Jason Owen

DENVER — An ongoing shopper behavior study conducted by the Integer Group and M/A/R/C Research revealed that shoppers’ habits when buying private-label products is consistent with last year. The groups noted some shopper segments appear to be increasing their acceptance of private label with more than a third of shoppers still saying that they are buying more private-label brands than last year. Of that group, 1-in-3 shoppers say they will probably buy even more in the future.

While more than half of shoppers (54%) named quality as their top priority when shopping for everyday products, less than a third said that name brands are better quality or more reliable than private label. However, 56% of shoppers have the perception that name-brand packaging is more attractive than private label.

"Shoppers realize that name brands no longer guarantee better quality and there is a significant decline in the gap between private label and brand name over the past few years. When it comes to differentiating the product itself, packaging might be the only thing left for name brands to stand out. Packaging affects shoppers’ perceptions of the product and influences their decision. It’s an area where name brands have a competitive edge," said Craig Elston, senior vice president, insight and strategy at the Integer Group.

Additional findings in the private label edition of The Checkout include:

  • Only 29% of the survey’s respondents feel strongly that national brands are of better quality, down from 36% last year and 43% in 2010 ;
  • When asked what types of private-label household goods shoppers are OK buying, 66% of respondents listed over-the-counter medicine at the top of the list with milk as a close second with 61% ;
  • The least purchased private-label category in the study is pet food, with only 18%of shoppers saying they would be okay purchasing this as private label ;
  • Forty-five percent of shoppers believe that name brands have more new products, variety and innovations than private-label brands.

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Survey: Chocolate is top choice for Halloween candy

BY Jason Owen

WASHINGTON — A new Halloween survey from the National Confectioners Association, an advocate for the confectionary industry and its customers, found an overwhelming majority of respondents chose chocolate as their favorite Halloween treat.

“While chocolate prevailed as the top confectionery choice this Halloween, our survey also found that adults still plan to buy a variety of both chocolate and candy for the ghosts and goblins who darken their doorsteps on Halloween evening,” said NCA VP communications Susan Whiteside. “Individual buying and consumption habits aside, there’s no denying the role that candy of all kinds plays in this all-American holiday tradition — and that’s something even the grumpiest gremlin can celebrate.”

Chocolate garnered a resounding 72% among Americans are their top choice for sweets and treats during Halloween.

Other Halloween candies that ranked high on the list were candy corn (12%), gummy candy, chewy candy, hard candy, lollipops, licorice, and gum and mints, which totaled the remaining 16% collectively. The survey revealed two-thirds of consumers will buy a mixture of chocolate and nonchocolate candy.

Survey results also showed that Halloween is the top holiday for sharing candy, more so than Easter or Valentine’s Day. Also, 64% responded that personal taste and favorite brands are top factors when it comes to purchasing decisions. 


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