Quanum Practice Solutions is excited to present this article, reprinted with permission from Mike Pritts, chief product officer at Surescripts®.
A staggering 97% of physician practices reported a drop in patient volumes last spring. Citing safety from COVID-19 as the top concern, some skipped routine screenings that will eventually lead to delayed cancer diagnoses, while others missed appointments that will exacerbate chronic or complex conditions. Although there was a general return to pre-pandemic visit levels months later, it has been uneven by specialty. According to research published by the Commonwealth Fund, visits to dermatology, adult primary care, ophthalmology and urology were growing by early October 2020, yet, specialties such as pulmonology, otolaryngology and cardiology still lagged behind.
In the months and years ahead, we’ll likely be dealing with the health and financial ramifications of patients whose health issues went untreated or undertreated during the pandemic. Fortunately, there are new and innovative approaches to care management that leverage health IT tools. Here are a few examples of how technology can help build stronger care management programs for better health outcomes.
Connecting care providers
Care teams need timely and accurate clinical data and information. Clinical Direct Messaging lets healthcare professionals seamlessly send and receive information securely across multiple care collaboration scenarios within their existing electronic health record workflows. Tools like these give care teams a clearer picture of their members and populations, allowing them to spend less time tracking down information and remain focused on ensuring appropriate, timely and cost-effective care.
Increasing medication adherence
Poor medication adherence is regularly the result of patients being unable to afford their prescriptions or because of friction like manual prior authorization in the prescription process. But with the technology available today within your electronic health record, like Real-Time Prescription Benefit, prescribers and pharmacists have access to patient-specific cost of medications based on their plan, deductible and out-of-pocket spending for the year. And with solutions like Electronic Prior Authorization, providers can recoup time and deliver medications and better experiences on time.
New federal regulations are recognizing the importance of helping patients get the necessary medications at an affordable cost. A new Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) rule requires Medicare Part D health plans to adopt real time benefit tools capable of integrating with at least one prescriber’s electronic health record software. This allows care providers to work together with their patients to identify and remove cost barriers so that patients can get the medicine they need.
Another useful tool is Insights for Medication Adherence, which delivers member-specific data directly from PBMs to clinicians, identifying gaps in care and high-risk medications. When providers have these insights, member outcomes and CMS star ratings are both likely to improve.
Identifying opportunities to educate
Finally, digital technology can help provide insight into missed or delayed essential treatments, shining a light on the need for better information sharing around high-risk populations.
Medication History for Populations helps providers quickly identify members within value-based care populations who may benefit from outreach concerning their medications. Insight into medication activity for at-risk patient groups gives care managers a powerful tool to reduce readmissions and improve treatment and outcomes.
An electronic health record (EHR) can help enhance quality, productivity, and patient outcomes. Quanum EHR can help connect care providers, increase medication adherence, and provide medication history to bring patient insights into focus. Learn more by calling 1.888.835.3409 or contact us via email.
Mike Pritts is chief product officer at Surescripts.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this blog post do not necessarily reflect the views of Quest Diagnostics®, or any of its employees.