Sergey Slitinskiy – MedReview
For Sergey Slitinskiy, running IT for a health care nonprofit often feels like an altogether different world from the improvisational soundscapes of one of the native Ukrainian’s lifelong passions—jazz saxophone.
With one very notable exception: When all of the disparate parts that make up an IT department are arranged and working in concert, great things—life-changing things—are given room to soar.
“If you truly love what you do, you don’t treat your job as a job; you treat it as a hobby,” says Slitinskiy, director of IT for the nonprofit New York County Health Services Review Organization (NYCHSRO) and its subsidiary, MedReview. “And when you bring that kind of passion, to know your stuff and how the pieces fit together, that’s when you start to see the impact of your work.”
Fifteen years after joining NYCHSRO/MedReview as a network administrator, one of his first jobs after immigrating to the U.S. from his native Ukraine, Slitinskiy’s role has broadened considerably.
Keeping them honest
Founded in 1974 as part of a federal law for Medicare and Medicaid oversight, NYCHSRO provides health care review and assessment services aimed at improving efficiency, cost effectiveness and ensuring compliance. This is done using various tools including audits and reviews, quality surveillance and evaluations.
The for profit MedReview, meanwhile, delivers the same type of services for non-governmental entities.
Lately, NYCHSRO/MedReview has placed growing emphasis on predictive analytics (PA) and artificial intelligence (AI).
“We’re not just using these tools to offer more intelligent services; we’re using them to improve our own internal processes,” Slitinskiy says. “The idea is to minimize human errors as much as possible.”
On the PA side, Slitinskiy and his team are using cutting-edge infrastructure to support data-mining, in the process improving everything from how the organization provides reports to how it develops software for internal use.
The goal, Slitinskiy says, is to fine tune the selection process, compiling the optimal number of cases to maximize the cost-effectiveness of the review program without creating pushback from medical providers. While AI efforts are still in their infancy (“We’re still training it to do what we want,” Slitinskiy notes), the applications are already providing significant returns.
Now, even without AI, the turnaround time is much shorter compared to a few years ago.
“Not only can we process more documents, but we’re doing it more accurately, which means less time spent on additional reviews,” Slitinskiy says.
Leveraging big data to improve the organization’s internal processes has proved equally promising, especially with cybersecurity.
With the help of AI, Slitinskiy and his team can identify hackers, phishing scams and the like, earlier and more accurately.
In addition, Slitinskiy instituted a comprehensive cloud-based disaster-recovery protocol for all of NYCHSRO/MedReview’s business systems, from accounting and human resources to its massive troves of client data.
Such efforts haven’t gone unnoticed. In 2017, NYCHSRO/MedReview achieved certification from HITRUST (short for Health Information Trust Act), a framework of standards designed to ensure proper information security practices within the health care sector.
“HITRUST Certification was evidence that NYCHSRO/MedReview was handling its data the right way; that it had the right framework in place for how to store and use that data,” Slitinskiy says.
Of course, having a sound security posture isn’t possible without reliable data to prop it up. Since 2002, BCM One has helped provide everything from data storage and network oversight to call center management and voice over internet protocol (VoIP) services.
Fielding nearly 500 calls every day, many of them involving complex billing and service issues, NYCHSRO/MedReview’s multi-office call center remains one of the organization’s most vital functions. By managing each call center’s phone and internet network, BCM eliminates the need for MedReview’s IT team to deal with 10 separate service providers—and 10 separate bills.
“From the beginning, Sergey was someone who understood how to utilize our unique suite of services,” says BCM One Client Manager Katharine Bordogna. “Any question he comes up with, there’s a solution we can offer.”
That, in turn, has freed Mr.Slitinskiy up for more cutting-edge pursuits, the use of AI and PA being chief among them.
For Slitinskiy, all of it feels worlds apart from the one he once knew, studying music at the National Music College in Kherson, Ukraine and dreaming of saxophone stardom. Realizing that a career in music would be tough to swing—particularly if he wanted to make it to the U.S.— Slitinskiy switched gears to an equally beloved subject: technology.
After earning a degree in industrial management and network engineering in 2001, Slitinskiy moved to New York, working as a network administrator for two years before joining NYCHSRO/MedReview two years later. From there, his swift climb up the corporate ladder began.
His efforts, which included orchestrating extensive repairs after Hurricane Sandy wiped out part of the company’s offices, didn’t go unnoticed. In 2013, 10 years after he first walked through NYCHSRO/MedReview’s doors, Slitinskiy was promoted to Director of IT.
“The way we’ve evolved and grown as a company, I’m really lucky to have a team that’s willing to evolve and grow with that vision,” Slitinskiy says. “It’s an incredibly dynamic team; everyone is able to do a little bit of everything. When you have that, it’s easier to do that one thing really well—whatever it might be.”
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