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GE Healthcare Whitepaper: Improving Patient Outcomes through a more Effective Electronic Medical Record (EMR)


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Read this whitepaper published by FierceHealthcare to learn more about how to use an EMR to help focus business and clinical operations, improve outcomes and better engage patients in healthcare decision making, including

Insight into how well a practice cares for its patients
Driving collaboration among providers and between providers and patients
Leveraging integration between EMR and practice management solutions
Monitoring and reporting on quality measures to better engage patients and families

Published in: Health & Medicine, Business

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GE Healthcare Whitepaper: Improving Patient Outcomes through a more Effective Electronic Medical Record (EMR)

  1. 1. P u b l i s h e d by F i e rc e H e a lth c a re C u s to m P u b l i s h i n g Managing the Transition to the More Effective EMR Arthur, a 66-year old-year retired electrician was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes at age 62. Recently widowed, he’s struggled to control his risk factors, keep track of multiple medications and arrange appointments with his primary care physician, endocrinologist, nutritionist and podiatrist. That all changed when Arthur’s primary care physician installed an electronic medical record (EMR) system. For the first time, Arthur was able to access at least a portion of his personal health information, includ- Improving ing demographics, progress notes, problems, and medications, vital signs, past medical history, immu- Patient nizations, laboratory data and radiology reports. As a result, Arthur can better manage his risk factors, short circuit complications and prevent trips to the hospital Outcomes emergency room. through a More Arthur isn’t alone in experiencing dramatic changes in lifestyle and health through use of an EMR. Using Effective Electronic EMRs instead of paper files has the potential to improve care for diabetic patients by boosting com- Medical Record munication, according to a September 1, 2011 study in the New England Journal of Medicine. After analyzing the medical records of more than 27,000 adults who received care for diabetes at clinics in the Cleveland area, researchers determined that diabetic patients improved faster at medical clinics that had made the switch to e-records. Despite positive results related to EMR usage, ques- tions remain. How can physician practices best use EMRs to focus business and clinical operations, s p o n s o r e d by improve outcomes and engage patients in healthcare GE C e n t r i c i t y P r ac t i c e S o lu t i o n decision making? Physician practices face multiple challenges ranging from the high costs of information technology (IT) maintenance and the data tidal wave, to reliance on EMRs as charts and “siloed” information repositories and incomplete clinical decision support (CDS). Truly effective EMRs offer physicians insight into how well a practice cares for its patients. Such insight calls for a blend of tools that inform diagnostic and treatment decisions at the point of care, facilitate col- laboration among providers and between providers Improving Patient Outcomes through a More Effective Electronic Medical Record
  2. 2. and patients, achieve integration or remain integrat- on whether or not patients had completed hemoglo-ed with a practice management solution, monitor and bin A1C tests within the last six months. Likewise, if areport safety and quality and engage patients and patient’s blood pressure was too high, CDS within thefamilies. EMR would recommend medications needed to man- age blood pressure in the context of diabetes.Effective EMRs also reach beyond information retriev-al to intelligence grounded in information, according “When an EMR functions with a dashboard, physi-to Dr. Jon D. Morrow, Senior Medical Leader and cians get specific, quantitative feedback on guidelineMedical Quality Improvement Consortium (MQIC) use,” says Dr. Dente. “And that, in turn, makes it eas-Director, GE Healthcare. Instead of merely replacing ier and more natural for physicians to integrate bestpaper, these EMRs “leverage information to enhance practices into their workflow.”knowledge through computer based intelligence anddecision-making support, linking information from Ideally, physicians want intelligence about the appro-one EMR to the information in another.” priateness of a medication in light of a patient’s hypertension, COPD, diabetes or CHF, says MarkClinical Intelligence and Blatt, M.D., Director of Global Healthcare Strategies,Insight via the EMR Digital Health Group, Intel. For example, if a physicianClinical insight should come through dashboards that decides to prescribe a hypertensive, she wants toreport performance on key metrics for Meaningful know the best drug or cocktail of drugs to address aUse (MU), as well as real-time feedback on how phy- patient’s condition. And she wants the information tosicians manage patients against guidelines, including emerge on a single screen, freeing her of the burdenthose with chronic conditions like diabetes, chronic of flipping through multiple EMR screens or paperobstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or congestive charts. .heart failure (CHF),. Dr. Morrow sees EMRs anchored in increasinglyFor example, if a guideline indicates that a diabetic complex levels of clinical intelligence, including thepatient needs a hemoglobin check every six months following:with a result no greater than one percent above theupper limit of normal, the dashboard should report Reactive intelligence and alerts: Alerts inform physi-how well each physician within the practice performs cians that a patient is allergic to a medication or thatagainst that metric. the patient is already on a medication that would like- ly interact with a newly prescribed medication. “With“Instead of functioning as a penalty, dashboard feed-back should empower individual physicians to changetheir behavior, while prompting the sharing of bestpractices among physicians who are typically eagerto learn how they stack up against their colleagues,”says Mark A. Dente, MD., Chief Medical Officer, GEHealthcare IT.While the dashboard component of clinical insightfunctions is what Dr. Dente calls “a speedometerfor physician performance”, clinical decision sup-port (CDS) functions as a kind of “global positioningsystem,” providing day-to-day guidance on how aphysician should diagnose and treat patients. Statedanother way, the dashboard identifies areas andstrategies for improvement, while CDS influences theinteraction between the physician, patient and orders.For example, the dashboard might identify prob-lems related to the hemoglobin A1C test for diabetics.Once a practice introduced a diabetic form with builtin decision support, physicians could receive alerts Improving Patient Outcomes through a More Effective Electronic Medical Record
  3. 3. To read more, please click here to download.Thank you for your interest.