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Delivering the right information to physicians at the point of care — Dr. Brad Miller on leveraging data to drive clinical decisions

Technology is changing the way providers deliver care, with health systems testing the waters to see the potential in such systems for bolstering patient care. Leveraging data can be a challenge, and physicians need information specific to their patient so they can make decisions regarding his/her treatment plan.

Brad Miller, MD, vice president of clinical solutions for Caradigm, a Seattle-based healthcare analytics and population health company, discusses how crucial it is for organizations to provide physicians data for clinical decisions and how analytics will evolve in the value-based healthcare system.

Question: What makes analytics actionable to your physicians?

Dr. Brad Miller: Physicians require the right information at the right time — often that is during a patient encounter. Whether base data from an EMR or more transactional analytic information from multiple source systems such as real-time quality measures (e.g. Accountable Care Organization 33 or Merit-based Inventive Payment System), the right information can really drive patient care.  

National quality metrics are all evidence based, which means they have been proven to lead to better outcomes for patients and long-term should prove to be cost effective. That said, physicians and other primary care givers need to be aware of any "gaps in care" for each patient so that those gaps can be closed. Changing medicine to value-based care would not be possible without this type of data and analytics approach.
 
Q: Do you have programs using analytics to improve clinical decision making?

BM: Caradigm customers use real-time analytics to address gaps in care during patient encounters. They also utilize the information from that analysis to drive real-time workflow and care management decisions. This allows providers to identify patients for timely enrollment in a care bundle program, or to ensure that a patient receives the right care plan upon discharge to help ensure they will not have a readmission. Not only are we seeing data and analytics used to address gaps in care, but we're leveraging the resulting information to drive large improvements in quality, cost and outcomes.
 
Q: What are some of the challenges using analytics? What progress have you made?
 
BM: When working with providers, many express that they previously were not able to receive, analyze and act on data in a timely fashion due to having multiple data source systems.  For example, some providers were working with weeks or months old data – information that is not usable in many cases due to that latency. The reality is that value-based care will require coordinated care and coordinated analytics across provider systems, practices, which means many, many data source systems. We have found that by utilizing a platform and applications designed specifically for that type of operation has been a boon to the practice of value-based care.  Data is up to date, timely and accurate changes to metrics or alterations to care plans synchronize across the system in real time, versus the months of time and effort it can take to make these changes in legacy systems.

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