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As healthcare providers are increasingly aware, interoperability between telehealth, remote patient monitoring devices (RPMs) and electronic health records (EHRs) is critical to make the most of virtual care. As a telehealth/RPM solution provider, how are you leveraging your integration capabilities when addressing healthcare providers?
Some major benefits of an integrated system include a reduction in human error, accessibility, expediency, cost reductions, increased patient satisfaction and improved outcomes.
Reduction in Human Error
The financial and human costs of medical errors are tremendous; hundreds of thousands of patients are impacted every year, and billions of dollars are lost. With interoperable EHR and RPM systems, latent errors will be reduced which could otherwise be the results of ineffective systems and faulty organizational tools.
Accessibility & Expediency for Healthcare Providers
When patient’s health information from consultations or devices is automatically uploaded into an integrated, secure hub on the cloud, there is less room for human error and it enables providers to expedite care.
A single-source system that integrates RPM data into EHRs leads to low-to-no interruptions in care, with no increase in administrative labor. When patients switch providers, EHRs make transferring records easier, leading to fewer gaps in care.
Cost Reduction for Providers and Patients
Such a streamlined, efficient system results in better health outcomes for patients and reduces healthcare costs overall. Providers can spend less time and resources on administrative tasks and optimize time with each patient, increasing the number of patients they see.
Integrating RPM devices into EHR systems is not only helpful for better overall healthcare management and cost savings; in many cases, it is also a requirement to receive Medicare reimbursement.
Increased Patient Satisfaction
The Michigan State Medical Society surveyed providers who reported that easy access to the EHR during a telehealth visit facilitates better care and rapport with the patient. Additionally, providers relished on the abilities to easily provide summaries to the patient, along with orders for diagnostic tests and referrals, which increase patient’s service satisfaction.
Improved Patient Outcomes
As health data is monitored in real-time (through RPMs) and is seamlessly stored in EHRs, providers can address concerns earlier, before patients’ conditions worsen to the point that hospital or in-office visits are required. Patients can also participate more fully, and health outcomes have been shown to improve (and healthcare costs are lowered) when patients are more informed and take responsibility to work cooperatively with their providers concerning their own health.
Integration Issues with EHR and Remote Patient Monitoring
Those in the EHR/RPM integration space recognize that simplicity is required in a well-synchronized system: and an effective soliton will enable people with no technical skills to interact easily with RPM systems and electronic health record systems.
As a telehealth and RPM solution provider you should be able to offer integration to EHRs, but providers or practices that are unable to seamlessly integrate into EHR may still achieve integration using an interface or platform that would direct the flow of information.
For telehealth visits, providers should consider if they will record the visits and how to store the video files. An EHR platform may not be capable of managing large video files, but a picture archive and communication system (PACS) might enable video storage, which even though may add some storage capability, it brings up security concerns.
Providers could also create a telemedicine template in the EHR and document care after telehealth visits. To make things easier, documentation of telehealth visits could involve speech recognition software for dictation or using a scribe during the visit.
We would love to hear your experience and challenges with EHR integration to keep us informed and in the loop. As leaders in the virtual care connectivity space, we work with telehealth and rpm solution providers and are always eager to learn about other companies and how we can assist them by providing private cellular connectivity and other managed services such as procurement, kitting, deployment logistics and tiered support.