Digital Connected Care: Workflows by the Clinician, for the Clinician

Two providers discuss patient-generated health data

TErickson 150x150O:\Enterprise Marketing and Communications\Departments, Events, Initiatives\FY21\Accelerate Health\Digital Marketing\Content\DigitalConnectedArticleSeries\2_ClinicianWorkflowsThe Digital Connected Care article series elevates the conversation from tech talk to the practical application of remote patient monitoring in clinician designed workflows with evidence of improved outcomes without increasing staff burden.

The growth of digital health products for wellness, fitness and disease management continues. According to a new report by the IQVIA Institute for Human Data Science, there are now more than 350,000 digital health apps available for download. Coupled with a survey that an estimated one in five Americans are tracking their health data using a digital health app, people generate a tremendous amount of personal data with the potential to improve health.

The first article in this series, “Digital Connected Care: The Innovation Journey that Delivers on the Promise of Remote Patient Monitoring,” called for the design of clinical workflows that deliver on the promise of remote patient monitoring using digital health tools. It cited a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services report that concludes in part that while there is a significant and growing interest in the practical application of patient-generated health data (PGHD) in clinical workflows, a lack of PGHD workflow integrations with which to demonstrate value hinder the development of viable applications for PGHD.

In order to demonstrate value and achieve improved health using PGHD, system designers must address a few critical elements:

  1. The optimal collection of PGHD
  2. The technical integration of PGHD into clinical systems
  3. Availability of actionable PGHD within clinical workflows

Clinician Empowerment Using Health Data

A key to successfully conquering these critical elements is engaging with clinicians who are acutely aware of the problems in need of solutions and understand that incorporating PGHD in their everyday practice can create efficiencies. As a starting point, clinicians must be active participants in designing applications that link PGHD to EHRs or other clinical systems.

Clinicians can inform the initiatives that are best suited for PGHD and the best ways to surface PGHD electronically to meet needs. Additionally, clinicians should be a part of validation studies and other research protocols to generate clear evidence of the effectiveness of its use. It is imperative that clinicians can trust the reliability and validity of the data received as well as the impact of the decisions made while using the information derived from PGHD.

Partnership with Developers and Device Manufacturers

Device and system manufacturers can play a role in pre-processing PGHD into useful information at the point of care. This includes providing the right data at the right time so that it is clinically relevant. The first step is an assessment of clinical information needs. There is a tendency to create solutions that show all data collected but what is most helpful is providing just enough data for the clinical team to intervene.

Next, consider use within clinical decision support tools and nursing symptom management workflows. To be most effective, utilize a method that will reduce the burden on clinicians that need to search for a particular piece of PGHD.  Then present the data in a way that is most relevant for the clinician. Summarize, contextualize and visualize the data in a way that decreases the cognitive load. Note that this may be different for each care team member. It’s not one size fits all

Accelerate Health, the innovation hub of HIMSS, is working with clinicians to define practical workflows that support specific clinical applications and improve patient and care team outcomes. At the foundation of these workflows is low-friction access to patient data through the implementation of open standards-based software, which enables  compliant sensors, devices or tools to securely and automatically connect to any compliant gateway or clinical health record system on a global scale.

Previous Blogs in This Series:

  1. The Innovation Journey 

Personal Connected Health Alliance

You are invited to help drive mainstream adoption of remote patient monitoring. HIMSS and its partners within the PCHAlliance aim to advance personal connected health through technological and business strategies.

Join the HIMSS Innovation Organization