Meaningful Connections

A Resource Guide for Using Health IT to Support the Patient Centered Medical Home

While health it is a valuable tool to enable medical home, it is only one component of what must be a larger transformation in health care delivery. This guide offers a crosswalk between those capabilities and functionalities and introduces important consumer, family and caregiver functions that should be in place. Finally, we include a section that offers “boots on the ground” experience from case examples in the field to help encourage dialogue and better understanding about the role of “meaningful use” in the medical home. Recognizing the broad spectrum of health it capabilities, the guide identifies a beginning set of guidelines for health it that focus on what it should achieve in the context of the medical home:

  • Health data and information must be accessible to primary care medical home practices, physicians, and patients;
  • Standards, protocols and rules for health data exchange on the network should be fully open and supportive of data portability and interoperability;
  • Information technology should support the enhanced practice efficiency and quality of care that is required by the PCMH model; and
  • Confidentiality of data should be imperative.

This guide includes a chapter that discusses the value of engaging the patient as an active participant, and consumer principles to guide this activity and highlights representative responses from a non-scientific survey. The case studies present findings such as: Systems in place for provider-to-provider interaction are better established at this time than patient connectivity; Physicians are using health it to support a wide range of capabilities: e-prescribing, in-office messaging, eHRs, disease registries, reminder systems and more; Investment is expensive and time consuming, but can lead to smoother workflow, fewer patient phone calls, greater satisfaction for both providers and patients

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