Patient Safety: The Right Thing to Do
Missouri Health Connection (MHC) continually works toward innovative and meaningful ways to provide physicians with crucial patient information and services to better treat and understand a patient’s health by promoting timely access to more complete health records. MHC is not only supplying physicians with better tools to care for patients, but also empowering the patient to take control of their health care, improving safety and reducing costs.
Medical systems house and code data differently making it difficult to facilitate ease of transition of care for physicians. The holes left in a patient record can leave physicians, especially those that get referrals, with little to no historical knowledge about the patient or their condition. MHC, as a aggregator of data from multiple disparate sources, takes patient data that is unreadable for other data systems and normalizes it, in real-time, so it is useable by MHC Participants. MHC’s interoperability places patient information right in the hands of the physician in a fast, readable, and actionable form.
MHC’s HIE capabilities are integrated into the electronic health record (EHR) system or can be accessed through a web-based portal for those that do not have an EHR system. When physicians or health organizations are a participant of MHC, they have an array of services available to them. These services allow physicians to view and query for a more complete health record document, Consolidated-Clinical Document Architecture (C-CDA), of a patient. MHC also has an Alerts and Notifications service, allowing physicians to receive alerts about their patient encounters in real-time. These services enhance quality and timeliness of care. Seeing multiple physicians can be exhausting and frustrating for the patient, but with MHC, that patient’s medical information can be at a physician’s fingertips in moments.
HIE benefits as outlined by HealthIT.gov:
- Provides a vehicle for improving quality and safety of patient care by reducing medication and medical errors
- Stimulates consumer education and patients' involvement in their own health care
- Increases efficiency by eliminating unnecessary paperwork
- Provides caregivers with clinical decision support tools for more effective care and treatment
- Eliminates redundant or unnecessary testing
- Improves public health reporting and monitoring
- Creates a potential loop for feedback between health-related research and actual practice
- Facilitates efficient deployment of emerging technology and health care services
- Provides the backbone of technical infrastructure for leverage by national and State-level initiatives
- Provides a basic level of interoperability among electronic health records (EHRs) maintained by individual physicians and organizations
- Reduces health related costs