Recently Get Real Health’s Senior Healthcare Strategist, Christina Caraballo authored a blog post on the topic of Patient Generated Health Data (PGHD). Here are some highlights of the piece written at the behest of HIMSS:
There is no denying that healthcare in the United States is undergoing a massive shift toward a value based model. With this shift, we have taken baby steps towards harnessing technology that empowers people as active participants in their health. However, true consumer engagement is essential in order to phase out a traditional fee-for-service system. In doing so, accepting and utilizing patient-generated health data — which provides greater insight into patients’ overall health so providers can make more informed decisions — will be a major piece as we make the transition.
There are a lot of options out there for individuals to monitor their health. Tools like fitness apps and trackers, weight loss apps, and Bluetooth enabled devices are an integral part of our lives. Now the question is, how to include this data as an integral part of a physician’s patient record.
Physicians are leery of PGHD for a multitude of reasons but primarily because of the sheer volume of data available. The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology defines PGHD as “data created, recorded, or gathered by or from patients (or family members or other caregivers) to help address a health concern.”[i] With this broad definition and the broad opportunities surrounding PGHD, it is no wonder that many healthcare providers are overwhelmed with which data to use and how to use it.
There is light at the end of the PGHD tunnel if the right approach is employed. Specifically, clinicians need to realize that the process of effectively incorporating this information can progress incrementally. Small steps like surveys can lead to health journals, care plans and other vital data.
Caraballo summarizes the issue the best, saying “As value based payment models and the concept of people-centered healthcare continue to infiltrate our healthcare delivery system, patient generated health data will play an increasingly central role in our success. It is important that all stakeholders continue to work together to address concerns and share best practices and lessons learned so that we can maximize the value of PGHD.”
As real world feedback provides a roadmap for change, concerns such as privacy, authentication and workflow will be alleviated as a natural course. Once providers place a certain degree of trust in patients and the information they can provide it will open up opportunities to treat in a holistic manner and improve health outcomes overall
Read the full blog post here.