iLoveBenefits: Industry News Blog

Are your health records safe

According to a recent survey, 72% of U.S. adults are concerned that their online healthcare records are vulnerable to hackers, down slightly from 76% last year. Source: New University of Phoenix Survey Reveals Majority of U.S. Adults are Concerned Their Online Healthcare Records are Vulnerable to Hackers, University of Phoenix press release, September 28, 2016.  

What should the alert expectation be?

According to a recent study of the electronic logs of 3 large practices, primary care physicians received a mean of 76.9.electronic notifications each day, while specialists received a mean of only 29.1 notifications per day. Source: “The Burden of Inbox Notifications in Commercial Electronic Health Records,” JAMA Internal Medicine, March 14, 2016, http://archinte.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2500026

What should the expectation be? What’s a good ratio of patients to alerts? Does the disease burden and morbidity play a role here?

EHRs: My How Things Have Changed

According to a recent analysis:

  • 74.1% of office-based physicians had a certified electronic health record (EHR) system in 2014, up from 67.5% in 2013.
  • The percentage of physicians who had a certified EHR system ranged from 58.8% in Alaska to 88.6% in Minnesota.
  • 32.5% of office-based physicians with a certified EHR system were electronically sharing patient health information with external providers.
  • Among physicians with a certified EHR system, 14.0% shared patient health information electronically with behavioral health providers, 13.6% with long-term care providers, and 15.2% with home health providers.

Source: “Adoption of Certified Electronic Health Record Systems and Electronic Information Sharing in Physician Offices: United States, 2013 and 2014,” NCHS Data Brief No. 236, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, January 2016, http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db236.htm

It is time that patients have complete access to their records

Only 39% of patients say their medical providers directly exchange medical records, while 25% of the patients must deliver a paper copy to the other provider themselves, according to a recent survey. Source: “Are Patients Ready for EHR Interoperability? IndustryView | 2015,” Software Advice, September 28, 2015, http://www.softwareadvice.com/medical/industryview/address-ehr-interoperability-concerns/

The importance of having one’s own medical information is growing

In 2013, more than half (54.9 percent) of patients said it was important to them that they get their own medical information electronically, a jump from 2008, when 44.3 percent of patients said so, according to recent findings from AHRQ’s newly released Chartbook on Care Coordination.  Having electronic access to their medical information mattered more to younger patients (18 to 34) than to patients 65 and older. However, having their doctors and other health providers share medical information electronically with each other for care coordination was most important to older patients, followed by middle-aged (35–64) and younger patients. Patients across all ethnic groups and educational levels want their doctors and other health care providers to be able to share medical information electronically, the chartbook shows.  From 2008 to 2013, the percentage of Black patients who said sharing medical information electronically was very important grew from 37.2 percent to 47.6 percent; among Whites, the percentage grew from 42.6 percent to 54.6 percent; and Hispanics, from 40.1 percent to 53.2 percent. For more information on the Chartbook on Care Coordination, part of AHRQ’s National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports, please visit: http://www.ahrq.gov/research/findings/nhqrdr/2014chartbooks/carecoordination/.

E-health comes of age as a business issue

Informed consent the electronic way

FDA released draft guidance last week outlining ways for clinical investigators, sponsors and institutional review boards to use electronic media to obtain patients’ informed consent for clinical investigations, reacting to researchers’ increasing interest in using electronic media instead of the traditional written informed consent document.

Accenture Survey: Majority of Seniors Want to Access Healthcare From Home

An Accenture survey regarding senior attitudes toward digital healthcare tools found that:

  • 67% of seniors want to access healthcare service from home.
  • 66% of seniors do not think available technology is sufficient for them to access healthcare from home.
  • Currently 25% of seniors use electronic health records portals regularly to manage their health.
  • Of those that currently use these portals, 57% use them to access lab results.
  • More than 60% of seniors are willing to wear a health tracking device to monitor vital signs.
  • Over 66% of seniors prefer to use self-care technology rather than managing health independently.

Source: Accenture, March 2, 2015

How the technology environment has changed

96% of physicians interviewed in a recent study use Smartphones as their primary device to support clinical communications. Source: “STUDY:  HOSPITAL IT PAYING LIP SERVICE TO ADDRESS PHYSICIAN MOBILE REQUIREMENTS, SAYS SPYGLASS CONSULTING GROUP,” Spyglass Consulting Group, January 14, 2015, http://spyglass-consulting.com/press_releases/SpyglassPR_POC_Comm_Physicians_2014.v1.3.pdf

EHR – That’s a pretty solid ROI on an investment

According to a recent study of 17 primary care clinics using Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems, it took an average of 10 months for the clinics to recover their EHR investments. Source: “Return on Investment in Electronic Health Records in Primary Care Practices: A Mixed-Methods Study,” JMIR Medical Informatics, September 29, 2014, http://medinform.jmir.org/2014/2/e25/

Getting a return on your investment in 10 months, by almost any standard is a winner…returns continue to accrue month after month.

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