Our Netgain Story: iCandy Consulting
Healthcare consultants often partner with organizations they trust to create optimal solutions for their clients.
Candy Simerson, principal consultant at iCandy Consulting, has partnered with Netgain on numerous occasions.
For over 30 years, Simerson has served as an executive leader in the ophthalmology field. She was the President and COO of Minnesota Eye Consultants, PA for more than 18 years, and has served on many healthcare boards and professional committees, showing her expertise in numerous areas including innovation, government affairs and clinical operations.
In 2016, Simerson retired from Minnesota Eye Consultants and relocated to Arizona where she launched her own consulting firm, iCandy Consulting. With considerable experience in ophthalmology practice management, Simerson has established a top-tier consultancy to ophthalmology practices that are in transition or facing significant challenges.
Many of iCandy Consulting’s clients have lost their CEO or need assistance with organizational restructuring, physician recruitment, operational efficiencies, technology optimization or revenue cycle management.
iCandy Consulting reviews clients’ existing practices and processes, which often “opens up a can of worms,” Simerson says. From there, issues are identified, prioritized and solutions evaluated. When appropriate, trusted partners are brought on board.
Finding partners who possess the right expertise is vital for Simerson’s consulting group. Factors that iCandy Consulting considers include:
“As a consultant, it’s important to me identify companies who are true business partners, whom I know and trust, instead of just recommending that a client trade one vendor for another,” Simerson says. “Who I bring in to a client-practice is a reflection of me and my brand.”
“I have built relationships with many Netgainers over the years. I’m confident they’ll provide honest, valuable and unbiased feedback.”
Healthcare has become increasingly complex and fraught with regulations.
“Netgain understands the clinical environment because they’ve been serving the healthcare industry for almost 20 years. They know how technology is used within a practice and how it should be configured to optimize performance, availability and security,” Simerson says.
Healthcare practices often struggle to keep up with changing security regulations. iCandy Consulting relies on Netgain’s established industry leadership to stay abreast of how those changes may affect a practice’s IT environment.
“I need partners who stay current with new regulations and know how those changes affect my clients,” Simerson says, “and Netgain does just that.”
How iCandy Consulting uses Netgain
iCandy Consulting frequently brings Netgain in to help rescue ophthalmology practices facing significant technology challenges.
“Many independent practices have grown quickly and their IT operations have not kept pace,” Simerson continues. “This jeopardizes the practice’s business continuity.”
Outdated IT infrastructure can cause performance issues, security risks, availability gaps and other issues that compromise the practice’s ability to provide excellent patient care.
Little or no IT team
“When my clients have little or no IT team to rely on, I see it as an opportunity to bring in Netgain,” Simerson says. “If a practice has only one IT person, the practice is vulnerable to a single point of failure.”
Simerson recommends her clients have access to an entire team of technologists to rely on for areas like networking, security, HIPAA compliance, virtualization, storage and clinical IT operations.
“I rely on Netgain to stay current with the most updated security regulations, and they do,” Simerson says. “Netgain’s Security Risk Assessment process is outstanding; it identifies areas of potential vulnerabilities for my clients and we all work together to prioritize and remediate issues.”
Current IT vendor issues
“Recently, I worked with an ophthalmology practice that had a long-term relationship with an external IT vendor. The practice was unhappy with their IT vendor’s support and felt they were being significantly underserved to the point that it was affecting practice performance levels,” Simerson said.
After confirming the service and support issues, Simerson engaged Netgain to assess the IT environment. Upon identifying the gaps that were causing vulnerabilities, Netgain worked with Simerson and her client to determine how to mitigate the issues and move the practice to a more secure and stable cloud environment.
“IT is the backbone of a practice management system,” Simerson says. “It changes frequently and requires a specific skill-set to address issues as they arise. Netgain has been able to provide the specific IT skill-set my client needs in every situation I’ve involved them in.”