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Great Healthcare Management Is All About Seamless Information Management

Posted by Sue Ellen McKelvey on April 25, 2017
shutterstock_626433212.jpgInformation management has always been an important component of healthcare. This used to be all about the processes. Now as we look forward it is also about the ability to provide safe, effective care to healthcare consumers. However, as these efforts increase, seamless data management is key. The quality, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of healthcare delivery has placed new demands on today's healthcare providers, and there is to be a seamless flow around information management; now essential in any IT platform supporting healthcare management.

Among the more notable requirements in these efforts to streamline healthcare delivery is a more intense focus on addressing the issue of care fragmentation. Silos of care - the professionals, the data and the lack of information around the patient's continuum of care still abounds. This has long been known as a key source of inefficiencies. And notably in this patient-centered care focused delivery system can have detrimental effects on quality-of-care and patient outcomes; whilst also inflating healthcare costs and data management bills. It is that intense focus that has given rise to value-based bundled payment models, which are designed to hold all providers along the continuum of care – as a group – more accountable for overall results in terms of care quality of care delivered against patient outcomes and cost-efficiencies. This is a new healthcare system of shared risk and rewards for great outcomes. Providers who meet quality/cost and satisfaction benchmarks throughout an episode of care to be compensated more generously than those who do not.

What this much more collaborative, patient-centered approach means to providers in terms of information management is that they need to be able to collect and track patients' outcomes and feedback with costs- data is to be available for their review and to enable more comprehensive reporting than ever before. And this bundled payment approach could effectively eliminate the traditional siloed responsibility or ' hand-off of responsibility' for patients as they are transferred between providers. And we now include the data direct from the patient portal into the mix of data that is their healthcare journey. So from the beginning to end of each episode of care data from all points of contact along the provider chain, can be collected and integrated; all in one platform for the Visual Outcomes users! And we see the patient is in the center of a series of healthcare events, not as a mere byproduct of these processes. In short, providers need their healthcare IT to be a single-source electronic command center for all aspects of practice management, from clinical work to office work.

So what should providers look for in a healthcare IT system to enable that level of efficiency and functionality in information management? A unified healthcare IT system that uses a single database.This ensures comprehensive, seamless software support for all practice needs, medical and non-medical, including clinical records, practice management and patient engagement solutions. Those integrated software solutions should include:

  • Practice management software (PMS) that provides a full array of business tools to add efficiency and accuracy to administrative management, including comprehensive scheduling, automated invoicing, E-billing, financial analysis and, perhaps most importantly, varied and customized performance reports to enable the in-depth analysis that is vital to the process of creating new, more efficient and better coordinated care pathways to improve care quality and cost-effectiveness.

  • Customer relationship management (CRM) software, which provides patient engagement solutions, such as online health education, automated health news and interactive notes, which are key to drawing healthcare consumers into the center of their own care, enabling them to take on an active role in that care for more successful health management and improved health outcomes.

  • Electronic medical record (EMR) software that enables medical e-processes, including E-labs management, E-prescribing, coding assistance, clinical records and clinical documentation, enabling easier care coordination and adding efficiency to both clinical and administrative management.

  • Electronic heath record (EHR) software that provides online access to and interaction with healthcare records, which works to enable team care coordination, integrated treatment notes, protected health information (PHI) sharing, profiling health checks and secure messaging.

  • Patient portals, which provide patient engagement solutions to empower patients in their health journey, including online appointment management, interactive personal health files, tailored online health education, client-clinician interaction tools and client-centered outcomes tracking.

The result is an end-to-end system in which all data is at the fingertips of any user, with specific outcomes achieved with secured roles, precise audits, and centralized control of access and full HIPAA compliance, everything your practice needs to track individual patients, their usage of services, and the costs of those services – including costs of medical and administrative staff hours, supplies and more – across the continuum of care.

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Topics: Patient Engagement solutions

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