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Author: Tim Blake

The Dimensions of Clinical Data Quality

The Dimensions of Clinical Data Quality

As we move into the next phase of EMR / EHR maturity, these systems will increasingly shine a light on problems with a) the quality of data captured by health providers and b) the quality of care delivered.  Without a mechanism for measurement of clinical data quality we can’t start this conversation that we need to have.   Regular readers of this blog will be familiar with my views and focus on the role of data quality in the emerging…

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Open Your EMR To Patients – Let Patients Help

Open Your EMR To Patients – Let Patients Help

… I now believe that the only way to significantly improve clinical data quality is by opening up EMRs and Clinical Information Systems to patients and caregivers, allowing them to read all that is written about them, and to flag incorrect data.  In addition to the transparency of knowing what is being written about them, patients and their caregivers are a vital line of defence in protecting against medical errors that arise from poor quality data.   As I work with…

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Health Care Homes – A Patient’s Role in Continuity of Care

Health Care Homes – A Patient’s Role in Continuity of Care

To achieve change, however, we need to see changes in behaviour from patients, not just health providers.  No amount of technology can ever replace the deep value of a long-term healthcare relationship between patient and doctor…   In recent weeks I’ve written a lot about the urgent need to drive deep change into health systems across the world, with the tools provided by Digital Health offering great opportunities to develop new, innovative models of care.  I remain convinced that much of…

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Why Current Funding Models are Holding Back Digital Health

Why Current Funding Models are Holding Back Digital Health

… fee-for-service funding models have served our health system well.  But their time has gone.  We need a new approach to creating incentives for health providers to deal with our current health crisis in a more sustainable way.   When done well, Digital Health offers the components (mobile devices, the level of smartphone ownership, patient reported outcomes, gamification, consumer health devices, consumer genomics, etc.) to develop new models of care that do a better job of looking after patients.  We desperately…

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Why Telehealth Won’t Make Healthcare Sustainable

Why Telehealth Won’t Make Healthcare Sustainable

Telehealth (i.e. video conferencing) does nothing to change the fundamentally flawed current architecture of healthcare.  In fact, it serves to reinforce the view that healthcare is about face-to-face appointments, albeit via video conferencing.  Telehealth does nothing to improve sustainability by allowing patients to interact with health information, but merely digitises an existing construct.   Underlying our largely broken health system lie a number of faulty assumptions.  Chief amongst these is the idea that healthcare only occurs when a patient meets face-to-face…

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FHIR and the Real Challenge of Health Data Interoperability

FHIR and the Real Challenge of Health Data Interoperability

… I think the hype risks misunderstanding the problem that we’re solving here.  Ultimately we’re not just sharing healthcare information between computers, but between people.  We must be able to share data between people and organisations, and be confident that we know what others meant when they captured or authored that data.   I spent the week before last at the HL7 International Working Group Meeting in Baltimore.  It’s an exciting time in the life of HL7, the international health standards…

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Why We Need Deep Medication Adherence Information

Why We Need Deep Medication Adherence Information

It is important to remember that one of the key reasons for gathering medication adherence data is to facilitate a conversation with a health provider regarding the complex issues of side effects, burden and cost, as well as other behavioural, psychological and financial reasons why a patient may be struggling with medication compliance.  These reasons need to be captured, respected and discussed, in order for behavioural change to be enabled.   In the emerging market for digital health, there are many…

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Without Improved Data Quality Our Health Systems Will Fail

Without Improved Data Quality Our Health Systems Will Fail

The act of gathering large amounts of aggregated medical record data into one place creates a transparency that we haven’t had before.  It represents the next step in a maturity journey, allowing us to shine a light on some of the real root causes of systemic quality and safety issues in our health systems.  The fact that we are reaching this maturity stage should be welcomed   With the explosion in medical knowledge that I’ve talked about in previous posts, it…

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Multiple Miscarriage, MTHFR and Pharmacogenomics: Our Story

Multiple Miscarriage, MTHFR and Pharmacogenomics: Our Story

… this raises a huge question… How many other drugs are we prescribing to patients, without understanding their genome, that not only won’t help them, but might cause harm?  Pharmacogenomics (the study of how drugs interact with specific genomes) isn’t some nebulous idea that might become useful to medicine in 10+ years time.  Clinicians desperately need to start taking account of patient’s genetics as they prescribe medications right now.  How many adverse drugs events and hospital admissions could be averted by…

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Digital Health = Globalised Healthcare

Digital Health = Globalised Healthcare

Why does my GP or specialist need to be in the same country as me, the patient?  If I’m already paying out-of-pocket to see a GP (which some of us are) or a specialist (which most of us are), and I can undertake that appointment online, why wouldn’t I go with a service that has high quality, immediate availability, is easily accessible and affordable?  If that happens to be in another country, does that really matter?   Much is made by…

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