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MedStar Health Awarded Grant to Pilot Apps for Patient-Reported Outcome Data

June 21, 2018
by Rajiv Leventhal
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A team of researchers from Maryland-based MedStar Health has been awarded an 18-month contract from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to support the development and testing of technical tools and apps that can be used to collect patient-reported outcome data.

With the implementation of electronic health records (EHRs) and the growth of data available to physicians, increased efforts are being made to access more information directly from patients to help clinicians make informed care decisions, MedStar officials noted in the announcement.

As such, this includes the use of patient-reported outcome data, which are any reports of the status of a patient’s health condition that comes directly from the patient, without interpretation by a clinician.  Such patient information captures quality of life, ongoing symptoms, and daily activities, and can help guide clinicians in their care and treatment decisions.

MedStar Health will support the development and testing of two apps using specified health IT requirements and standards for use with EHRs or other health information technology systems to collect patient-reported outcome data for clinical and research use.

As officials stated, the team will work with key stakeholders to collect information on the usability and functional requirements for the apps designed to collect patient-reported outcome data on physical functioning. The apps will be pilot-tested and evaluated in 10 primary and specialty care practices across MedStar Health and eight CAPRICORN primary care sites. The apps will be evaluated on the success of data collection and integration of these data within the electronic health record for clinical decisions, quality improvement, and research, officials said.

“Ensuring that patients have a way to report on outcomes that are meaningful to them is critical to the delivery of safe and effective care. The growth of data science as part of clinical care is helping us at MedStar Health to turn this data into improved quality of life for our patients,” Neil Weissman, M.D., chief scientific officer for MedStar Health and president of MedStar Health Research Institute, said in a statement. “The ongoing collaboration through the ACTION III network will help to advance the health of patients beyond our care sites and community.”

The MedStar Health Research Institute is the research arm of MedStar Health, the largest healthcare provider in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region. This particular federal contract was awarded through AHRQ’s ACTION III (Accelerating Change and Transformation in Organizations and Networks) funding mechanism.

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/news-item/mobile/labcorp-joins-apple-health-records-project

LabCorp Joins Apple Health Records Project

November 5, 2018
by Rajiv Leventhal, Managing Editor
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LabCorp, a provider of clinical laboratory and end-to-end drug development services, has announced that it has enabled Apple’s Health Records feature for its patients.

This iPhone feature aims to make it easier for LabCorp patients to access their LabCorp laboratory test results, along with other available medical data from multiple providers, whenever they choose, according to officials.

In January, Apple announced that it would be testing the Health Records feature out with 12 hospitals, inclusive of some of the most prominent healthcare institutions in the U.S. Since that time, more than 100 new organizations have joined the project,  according to Apple.

LabCorp test results are viewable in the Apple Health app for LabCorp patients who have an account with the company, and enable integration with the Health Records app. In addition to their LabCorp test results, patients will have information from participating healthcare institutions organized into one view, covering allergies, medical conditions, immunizations, lab results, medications, procedures and vitals.

Patients will receive notifications when their data is updated, and the Health Records data is encrypted and protected with the user’s iPhone passcode, Touch ID or Face ID, according to officials.

“LabCorp on Health Records will help provide healthcare consumers with a more holistic view of their health. Laboratory test results are central to medical decision making, and broadening access to this information will help patients take charge of their health and wellness, and lead to more informed dialogues between patients and their healthcare providers,” David P. King, chairman and CEO of LabCorp, said in a statement.

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HIMSS Analytics Introduces Infrastructure Adoption Model for Health Systems

October 25, 2018
by Rajiv Leventhal, Managing Editor
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HIMSS Analytics, the research arm of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, announced the introduction of the Infrastructure Adoption Model, or INFRAM, which is designed to measure the technical infrastructure used within a health system.

The INFRAM focuses on five technical subdomains, allowing organizations to benchmark how their infrastructure operates within the following areas: mobility; security; collaboration; transport; and data center.

Similar to HIMSS Analytics’ well-known Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model, or, EMRAM, the INFRAM is an eight-stage model (0 – 7) that allows healthcare IT leaders to map the technology infrastructure capabilities required to reach their facility’s clinical and operational goals, while meeting industry benchmarks and standards.  The final stage, Stage 7, guides organizations towards optimized information integration, contextualization and orchestration essential for the delivery of higher order local and virtualized care processes.

For reference purposes, Stage 0 on the model represents that an organization does not have a VPN, intrusion detection/prevention, security policy, data center or compute architecture. Stage 3 signifies that an organization has an advanced intrusion prevention system, while Stage 5 represents having video on mobile devices, location-based messaging, firewall with advanced malware protection, and real-time scanning of email hyperlinks.

HIMSS officials note that by identifying specific benchmarks for organizations to reach before they go live with EMR, systems, the INFRAM aims to ensure that a health system’s infrastructure is stable, manageable and extensible. Through this, organizations can ideally improve care delivery and create a pathway for infrastructure development tied to business and clinical outcomes.

 “The INFRAM is a welcome addition to our maturity model suite and addresses a longstanding need – guiding healthcare organizations in securely implementing the infrastructure with which their EMRs are built upon,” Blain Newton, executive vice president, HIMSS Analytics, said in a statement. “We have seen health systems engage with advanced clinical applications, only for them to ‘glitch’ under infrastructure that isn't powerful enough to support their tools. With the INFRAM, healthcare providers can develop a detailed, strategic technology plan that defines their organization's current state, desired future state, and each stage in between to achieve their clinical and operational goals.”

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Clinical Team Communication and Data Access in the Palm of Your Hand

Thursday, October 25, 2018 | 1:00 p.m. ET, 12:00 p.m. CT

Eisenhower Health, a west coast-based Magnet Hospital, implemented an enterprise-wide solution enabling mobile communications and collaboration across all care teams, linking the entire enterprise, advancing its communications capabilities, creating access to an enterprise directory, and improving care team response and turnaround times.

Additionally, the system provided extensive and comprehensive reporting with data analytics showing where and to what extent response improvements were made, but also providing the information the hospital needed to better utilize the system and make adjustments to improve results.

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