New "App" engages patients to improve quality of care for diabetes, one of the most common, costly and preventable chronic conditions in the US
Empowers patients to securely share blood glucose readings, vitals, caloric intake and exercise information with care providers
App enables efficient Population Health Management
From the floor of the HIMSS12 Annual Conference and Exhibition, Allscripts and MyCareTeam (MCT) launched their integrated diabetes management system to healthcare providers. Integrating the MyCareTeam application with Allscripts Enterprise EHR is enabling patients and providers to collaborate to better manage diabetes between visits and in the office.
UMass Memorial Health Care, the clinical partner of the University of Massachusetts Medical School, was the first hospital to use the integrated system, and a second implementation is now underway at University of South Florida (USF) Diabetes Center in Tampa.
"To put it in perspective, if statistics hold true, more than 12,000 of the 35,000 attendees at HIMSS this year were pre-diabetic or had diabetes," said Glen Tullman, Allscripts Chief Executive Officer, who has served on the International Board of Directors of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) since 2007. "Nationally, diabetes affects 25.8 million people, an astonishing number. Managing a population of this size at the national level requires a truly connected community of health – one that both engages patients in self-management and uses remote health monitoring by a care team. At Allscripts, we are committed to an open technology platform that encourages innovative solutions, like this app from MyCareTeam, and drives better outcomes at a reduced cost."
Patients use MCT-Clinical for Diabetes, a software platform that is integrated with Allscripts Electronic Health Record, to regularly transmit their blood glucose readings directly from their glucose meters, along with blood pressure, weight, vital signs, caloric intake and exercise to a database via the Internet. With the Allscripts integration, this data automatically connects to the Allscripts Enterprise EHR, and can create user-defined alerts that are routed to a diabetes educator, a care manager, a nurse, the patient's primary care physician or, if serious enough, an endocrinologist. This process facilitates remote monitoring and coaching, increases user compliance with protocols, and most important, based on early results from UMASS and other studies, reduces hospitalizations.
"Caring for patients with chronic diseases is an ever-increasing burden to our healthcare system and a tremendous source of costs," said Jim Mingle, MyCareTeam's Chief Executive Officer. "Integrating the MyCareTeam clinical app with Allscripts Electronic Health Record was easy to do given their open platform and is already enabling providers and patients to communicate more effectively between – and avoid unnecessary – office visits."
The integrated system also has the potential to assist patients in managing other chronic diseases such as weight management, blood pressure and in the future, asthma.
UMass Memorial Achieves Significant Improvements
With more than 2,700 patients enrolled in the first six months and a plan to roll out to all its diabetic patients, the UMass Memorial diabetes care team has noted significant improvements as a result of the system in patient flow, greater efficiencies within the clinic, and better collaboration among an interdisciplinary team of primary care providers, nutritionists, endocrinologists, diabetes educators and family members.
"We are rapidly increasing patient enrollment and have recently expanded our roll-out to an additional 200 providers," said Dr. David Harlan, co-director of the UMass Diabetes Center of Excellence and former Diabetes Branch Chief for the intramural research program as the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. "If our initial accomplishments are any indication, we are excited to build on the efficiencies and outcome improvements this will bring. The EHR integration makes remote monitoring of our diabetes patients part of our routine workday, which revolutionizes the way we care for our patients."
"My HbA1c levels were always pretty good, but they've dropped below 6 since I started using this system," said Joseph Skrzek, a 25-year-old UMass patient. "It helps me to be better at treating myself. I now test my blood sugars six or seven times per day and use the system to sync my glucose numbers with what I ate and how much I exercised. I like the accountability of knowing my care provider is remotely monitoring my health on a consistent basis, not just once every 6 months."
USF Diabetes Center Will Use System to Gather, Analyze Data
Implementing this technology is part of USF Diabetes Center's bold initiative to fight diabetes on every front – from education and research to family-centered care.
"USF Diabetes Center is partnering with Allscripts and MyCareTeam to build a true and constant connection between our caregivers and our patients," said Henry Rodriguez, clinical director of the USF Diabetes Center, who was recently appointed to the American Diabetes Association's Board of Directors. "Not only does the system foster patient self-management, it enables us to gather and analyze clinical data, which is critical to our success in the fight against diabetes."
A UMass diabetes patient will demonstrate use of the online tool, a clinician will demonstrate how MyCareTeam integrates within the Allscripts Enterprise EHR and Allscripts Chief Medical Officer, Doug Gentile MD, will discuss how other clients can take advantage of the open platform and review this successful collaboration.
Allscripts MDRX delivers the insights that healthcare providers require to generate world-class outcomes. The company's Electronic Health Record, practice management and other clinical, revenue cycle, connectivity and information solutions create a Connected Community of Health for physicians, hospitals and post-acute organizations. For more information, visit www.allscripts.com.