Search to learn about InterSystems products and solutions, career opportunities, and more. Results include content from our developer community, product documentation and education websites in addition to InterSystems.com.

Clinical Alerts for Family and Friends Improve Transitions of Care and Enhance Patient Engagement

In a recent project initially funded by a grant from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), Rhode Island Quality Institute (RIQI) has taken a new step toward improving transitions of care, patient engagement, and care coordination. The new service, Designee Alerts, delivers clinical event notifications via email or text message to a critical but under-served pillar of care — the family and friends supporting the patient.

https://www.intersystems.com/isc-resources/wp-content/uploads/sites/24/Clinical_Alerts_for_Family-RIQI-SS-image-300x139.jpg

CUSTOMER: Rhode Island Quality Institute (RIQI)

CHALLENGE: Extend clinical alerts to the third leg of the patient care triad — family and friends — to improveoutcomes, patient and family satisfaction, and save lives.

OUTCOME: Using InterSystems HealthShare, as soon as relevant admission, discharge, or transfer information is entered into any electronic medical record in any hospital throughout Rhode Island, the system alerts the patient’s designees. Designees experience less confusion around transitions of care, and can intervene in cases such as opioid overdose to prevent patients from being “treated and streeted” and repeating the cycle.

A family member could be alerted, for example, at the moment an elderly parent is transferred from a nursing home to the hospital, or the moment a patient goes to the hospital due to an overdose of opioids — a scenario RIQI says is a primary use case for Designee Alerts.

“With this kind of an alert, someone responsible for an adult opioid user can intervene to avoid another case of the patient being ‘treated and streeted,’” said Scott Young, senior director product strategy and growth at RIQI. “Otherwise the cycle of abuse and overdosing might continue, at great cost to all.”

Connected Healthcare System Accelerates Development

For several years, RIQI has been sending clinical event notifications to providers through CurrentCare, its statewide health information exchange based on the InterSystems HealthShare® unified health record. CurrentCare connects every hospital in Rhode Island, and its clinical event notifications have helped Rhode Island’s acute care organizations reduce readmissions and costs, improve care coordination, and elevate quality measures.

Scott Young, Senior Director Product Strategy and Growth, RIQI

RIQI leveraged the provider clinical event notification functionality it already had in CurrentCare to speed the creation of Designee Alerts. Now, as soon as relevant admission, discharge, or transfer information is entered into any electronic medical record (EMR) in any hospital throughout the state, the system alerts the patient’s designees.

“We’ve seen Designee Alerts positively impact patients and their personal communities by decreasing confusion around transitions of care,” said Young. “Particularly for patients with comorbidities or those dealing with end of life care, these alerts can be a game changer for their loved ones.” But despite the benefits noted by early users of the service, RIQI faces two challenges to adoption by a wider audience.

Addressing Privacy and Identity Concerns

Designee Alerts currently relies on the patient to give designees access to their account in CurrentCare’s patient portal, CurrentCare for Me. When a designee receives an alert, it includes only the name of the patient and a link to the patient’s CurrentCare for Me account. Once the designee follows the link and logs in, he can view the alert details. With access to the patient’s CurrentCare for Me account, the designee can also view other health information in the record. “Remember that CurrentCare for Me and Designee Alerts are built on top of our HIE’s unified health record,” said Young. “Some patients aren’t comfortable giving their designee access to all of their health information.”

The designee enrollment process presents another challenge to adoption. “Due to privacy concerns, we want to be absolutely certain that only the intended designee gains access to the patient’s account,” explained Young. “Some designees drop out of the enrollment process before completion due to the burden of proving their identity.”

Coming Next: Streamlined Enrollment, Health Record Access Not Required

To make it easier and faster for designees to enroll, RIQI is developing a standalone application for mobile devices. The application will enable designees to receive alerts without burdensome identity proofs or having to access the patient’s account and health information in CurrentCare for Me.

Scott Young, Senior Director Product Strategy and Growth, RIQI

RIQI also will expand the marketing of Designee Alerts from patients to specialists who have the biggest stake in keeping family and others informed about their loved one’s status. These include those working in palliative care, substance abuse, mental health, and geriatrics, as well as organizations that support them, such as the Alzheimer’s Association.

Future Innovations

Optimal healthcare outcomes and satisfaction depend, in part, on good communication. RIQI plans to enhance communication for patients and providers, beyond Designee Alerts, with new services such as:

  • Including end-of-life planning and directives information in CurrentCare so that it is easily accessible for patients, providers, and families
  • Connecting social services into CurrentCare so providers can see, for example, that a patient has no transportation to a care location and can arrange for it with a support organization
  • Analyzing the unified health record in CurrentCare to proactively identify gaps in care and notify patients

“HealthShare software is stable and reliable, and using HealthShare for our patient portal gave us a huge head start developing Designee Alerts,” said Young. “That and our bi-directional data feeds with the EMR systems of every hospital in the state drive much of what we can do.”

Download the PDF

0:00 / 0:00
Video Companion

Other Success Stories You Might Like

May 25, 2022
Woman in warehouse taking inventory on tablet
Organizations recognize the importance of an optimized supply chain to business success, but data and application silos, complex partner ecosystems, and periodic market disruptions make it challenging to achieve in practice.
May 07, 2022
2 older doctors wearing masks looking at a tablet
Matching inpatient and outpatient records with HealthShare Patient Index enabled a single view of patient data, joint ventures with other healthcare organizations, and better information flow.
Apr 07, 2022
Healthcare worker at-home visit with patient
Dementia is a major global problem, afflicting 54 million people, with the number set to rise to 130 million by 2050. Cognetivity Neurosciences, founded by academics at Cambridge University in the UK, designed a cutting-edge solution to help alleviate the global dementia epidemic.
Apr 06, 2022
Physician pointing to tablet screen
The Chief Medical Officer at a major west-coast health plan in the U.S. asked for complete visibility into who’s in the hospital at any given moment. Given the work the health plan was already doing with InterSystems and health information exchange, the director of corporate data and analytics answered confidently, “Yes, we can do that.” “Can you do it in six months?” the CMO asked. The reply? Also affirmative.
Mar 28, 2022
Businessman wearing dark suit looking at his phone
Broadridge Financial Solutions
The Challenge Broadridge Financial Solutions, a $5-billion global fintech leader handling $7TN of fixed income and equities securities trades per day, needed a better way to manage and distribute growing volumes of data.
Nov 23, 2021
Hospital Doctor With Digital Tablet Talks To Male Patient
Matching inpatient and outpatient records with HealthShare Patient Index enabled a single view of patient data, joint ventures with other healthcare organizations, and better information flow.
Nov 23, 2021
group of doctors looking at images
When Hunterdon Healthcare joined forces with a larger neighboring health system, they knew they had the opportunity to lower costs and improve care for patients in western New Jersey. The two organizations opened a collaborative radiology imaging center that promised to cut wait times and bring high-quality services to more patients in their shared community.
Nov 23, 2021
mom and grown daughter looking at tablet on the couch
With a coverage area that spans 75 Texas counties, 40 Louisiana parishes, and more than 15 million patients, Greater Houston Healthconnect (GHH) is one of the largest health information exchanges (HIEs) in the United States. Such a broad network means there’s never a shortage of data.
Nov 23, 2021
University Hospital Sharjah - Partnership
University Hospital Sharjah (UHS), one of the leading private hospitals in the Gulf region, and InterSystems celebrate a decade of partnership on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the hospital’s foundation.
Nov 23, 2021
Medcare Implements InterSystems TrakCare as Part of its Digital Transformation Journey
Medcare Hospitals & Medical Centres is embarking on its digital transformation journey by implementing InterSystems TrakCare unified healthcare information system at its hospital in Sharjah. Through their strategic partnership, InterSystems is set to deploy TrakCare as a Service electronic medical record system (EMR) across Medcare’s four hospitals and 16 medical centers.