Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Improving Patient Care Through The Use of IT

Tina Ellis Coyle, Information Systems, Marshfield Clinic, 1000 North Oak Avenue, Marshfield, WI, USA

Learning Objectives for this Presentation:
By the end of the presentation, participants will be able to:
1.) Understand the importance of expanding the scope of information systems to improve patient outcomes beyond immunization.
2.) Understand the importance of the integration of immunization information systems in managing chronic disease.

Systems were developed to track, assess and intervene with patients, as well as providers, regarding the following primary, secondary and tertiary services: Early Detection: Immunizations, Colon cancer, Breast cancer, Cervical cancer, Heart disease, Diabetes, Osteoporsis Diabetes Management: Fasting Lipid Profile, Hemoglobin A1C, Urine Microalbumin, Eye Exam Foot Exam

1. Increase the level of preventive services on a patient-by-patient basis. 2. Proactively identify and monitor patients who are at risk due to the onset of disease. 3. Improve health outcomes while providing health care services in a more efficient manner.

Using a very sophisticated electronic medical record and the ability to use the information at the point of care delivery, providers are able to identify on a patient-by-patient basis, which primary, secondary and tertiary services patients are due/overdue for. Using a common shared electronic record and a robust data warehouse, deliver the best patient care possible.

The integration of these systems in patient care has brought preventive services to the foreground of patient encounters. It is quickly evident when a patient is due/overdue for a preventive service, which has increased early-detection rates and minimized risks of health complications and hospitalizations.

We need to cast a wider net when it comes to the importance of integration of information systems in monitoring and managing patient care. Just as we have learned through the use of immunization registries, we can improve patient outcomes when know what services patients are due/overdue for based on age and gender; this would not be possible if it were not for integrated electronic health records.

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