Real-Time-Access

Can Home Health Software Improve Patient Outcomes?

Home Health Point of Care Solutions Key to Success.

I have a friend. We’ll call her “K” for the purposes of this “discussion”. One day K was telling a story to an agency about her grandfather. Her grandfather who was receiving home care services. Years later the words of her Granddad have remained with me.

In response to a (history) question that a clinician asked him during one of his visits he said, “Don’t you people talk to one another?!”

Can you imagine how that clinician felt? Maybe you’ve had a patient say this to you before. No matter how excellent the clinician, it can be difficult sometimes to know all that’s been going on with a patient. Particularly so if you’re in a “paper world”. This is where K was headed when she was talking to the agency we were meeting with. It’s hard, wait… really hard, for visiting clinicians to know all that’s been going on with a patient in the last 8 hours, 16 hours… shoot, maybe even 24 hours when documentation is done on paper. As K was talking to the agency she was explaining how a patient’s overall experience could be improved if clinicians had access to information real-time. To access information real-time, you need to remove the paper and implement a point of care solution.

I’m not going to try to sell you on the value of implementing point of care… What am I saying? YES, I am!!  I’m all for point of care. If I had a magic wand I’d have point of care for all medical and clinical professionals. In fact, I seek out healthcare professionals that use it! I don’t have any (serious) medical issues and I truly dislike telling my story over and over again. My primary doc is in the process of implementing an EHR. He sees stimulus dollars… I see efficiency! During my last appointment with him it was the first time, in my years of seeing him, that he knew what meds I was on, when I asked him for refills of my allergy medication. It was right there.  During previous visits he’d often ask me, “What are you taking again?” At my daughter’s pediatrician appointments I look forward to the point in our visit when he shows me her growth chart on his device. I love technology, particularly when it helps me feel like the people caring for me and my family know me better.

Imagine our patients that have a chronic issue. How many times have they told their story? How many times have they answered the same question? It’s bound to get old… and frustrating.

If you haven’t adopted point of care, I highly recommend considering it.  My friend Claire wrote a blog about a recent experience she had talking with a couple of agencies about their implementation of point of care: Paper Versus Plastic.

We can help improve outcomes and overall patient experience with the use of technology.  It’ll take planning, effort and education to make the switch but I truly believe, in the end, your patients and your clinicians will be grateful for it.

Are you looking for Hospice software? HEALTHCAREfirst offers Web-based home health software that was built in partnership with home health agencies around the country. We offer solutions to help with point of care, home health and hospice billing and all the pieces in between. Contact us today!

March 9, 2012

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