Earlier this year, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), in collaboration with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), launched Sync for Science (S4S), a pilot program to enable individuals to access their health data and send it to researchers. Allscripts is one of several electronic health record (EHR) companies to participate in S4S, and our FollowMyHealth® patient engagement platform is proving to be superbly architected for this type of collaboration. First, a little background on what we’re working toward. S4S has two main goals: Enable individuals to contribute data to the Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Cohort. If people want to support genetic and genomic research efforts, they should be able to easily share clinical data in a structured electronic format. Accelerate patient data access through Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). More regulations are requiring providers to offer […]

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18 tips for patient portal success

There is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to patient engagement. Teams have to design a game plan with tactics that work best for their organizations. Clients have shared what’s worked for them, and we’ve compiled a list of some of their most creative and successful ideas: 1) Work as a team. “It takes a team. Provider buy-in is essential, however, we do believe it starts at the front desk. Before the patient leaves we want them to hear at least three times, ‘Hey, did you hear about this cool new tool we have to offer you?’” Melissa Huff, ClO, Clinics of North Texas 2) Start with employees. “We started with rolling it out to our employees. We wanted to gain buy-in, and they also helped us test the product before we launched it publicly,” Jaime Crawford, Manager of Communications and Digital Media, […]

There is no magic bullet when it comes to engaging patients to use a patient portal – rather, a magic buckshot. No one understands this better than Clinics of North Texas (Wichita Falls, Texas, U.S.A.), which has invited 55% of its patients in 2015 to join the Allscripts FollowMyHealth® patient engagement platform. Clinics of North Texas Chief Information Officer Melissa Huff and Clinical Trainer Trudi Pittman shared their experience at Population Health University, our annual user group meeting for clients with Allscripts population health solutions. The organization is a multi-specialty clinic with 45 providers and about 200,000 patient visits each year. “To encourage adoption of the FollowMyHealth portal has taken a lot of creativity and a team,” Pittman said. “You have to involve everybody from the beginning to the end of the process.” What the enrollment process looks like When […]

Excela Health (Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.) prioritizes a positive patient experience. Combining teamwork with its patient-centric philosophy helped the organization succeed with Allscripts FollowMyHealth® patient engagement platform, branded ExcelaHealth.Me. Since launching the portal in January 2014, Excela Health has enrolled 20,000 patients and adds more than 1,500 new accounts each month. It has also exceeded the Meaningful Use requirement for more than 5% utilization – in both inpatient and outpatient settings – helping claim about $3 million in incentive funding. It takes a team to succeed “Your first step is to embrace the fact that patient portal deployment and utilization are communication challenges, not IT problems,” Excela Health Manager of Communications and Digital Media Jaime Crawford said. “It really does take a team.” Excela Health engaged the senior leaders first and launched a governance structure that involved all parts of […]

During our annual Population Health University user group meeting, Holzer Health System Director of Communications Kevin Waller shared how his organization is successfully engaging patients with Allscripts FollowMyHealth®, tripling enrollment to more than 12,000 patients within one year. Engaging Patients with FollowMyHealth: Holzer Health System (Gallipolis, Ohio, U.S.A.) is a multi-disciplinary healthcare system, with 15 ambulatory locations throughout southern Ohio and western West Virginia, and two hospitals with 287 beds. When asked what in particular made Holzer so successful in the quest to achieve effective patient engagement, Waller outlined three key strategies: 1) Define the portal Waller and his team recognized early on that people didn’t understand what FollowMyHealth was. Inspired by a marketing campaign of a home improvement store, Waller suggested changing the name of the portal to “MyHolzer.com.” Holzer Health System refined its message, making it easier for […]

Patient engagement is essential to improving care, but it can be a tough climb. For example, U.S. clients often note the most challenging government incentive measures are the ones that require patient response. Health First (Brevard County, Florida, U.S.A.) recognized the importance of genuine patient engagement, including millions of dollars in potential Meaningful Use incentives. Below, Health First shares how – within just a few short weeks – it achieved 52.6% of patients with online access and encouraged 6.8% of patients to view information electronically. Here are some of the successful strategies from Health First Vice President of Enterprise Applications/Informatics and Chief Nursing Informatics Officer Karie Ryan, RN, MS, BSN: 1. Remember that implementation is just a first step. During the summer of 2014, Health First implemented Allscripts FollowMyHealth® patient portal (and rebranded it HFConnect). But just building a portal […]

In a recent post, I explored the promising nature of clinically integrated networks (CINs) and outlined how this model differs from previous efforts to “fix” health care. Now let’s look more closely at the technological underpinnings critical to success for organizations participating in CINs. Data sharing criteria require HIT interoperability One key attribute of the current CIN model is a focus on information sharing among members—and an acknowledgement that success is highly dependent upon the use of interoperable health information technology (HIT). In other words, CINs require that members be able to share data, aggregate data and analyze data. Let’s look at what this means in practical terms: how interoperable technology is essential as a CIN focuses on reducing hospital readmissions. – When a patient is discharged, providers in the community must be informed about the treatment delivered in the […]

One of the things I love most about working with partners is seeing their dedicated work to solve specific problems for our clients, using integration tools and expertise available in the Allscripts Developer Program.  They make it look simple and seamless, even though their “overnight success” may have been years and years in the making. Our App of the Month, from eDoc4U, is an example of a company laser-focused on solving problems and creating innovative new software.  Last year, it was one of the five finalists of the Open App Challenge, chosen by a panel of clients, industry experts and Allscripts representatives as an application that could potentially revolutionize health care. Since then eDoc4U received a patent on its NCQA-certified population health management technology and worked with Allscripts clients and developers to refine its integration, making it as streamlined and robust […]

It’s a simple concept: patients who are engaged in their own health care are more likely to experience positive outcomes. But how do we engage them? That’s the million-dollar question. At our recent user conference, Population Health University, three clients shared patient engagement experiences, tactics they use to drive registration and participation, and how their approaches result in better care. Here are highlights from those presentations: Baylor Scott & White: Achieved initial 10% adoption rate with phased “go-live” Baylor Scott & White, one of the largest health systems in Texas, went live with FollowMyHealth™ this year in both its ambulatory and acute facilities. According to its clinical coordinator of information technology, Paul Bassel, MD, the organization believes there is even more opportunity to engage patients through its ambulatory arm, Health Texas. “Here the value proposition is much greater, given the […]

Allscripts Population Health Management clients recently gathered in Pittsburgh for our annual user conference, Population Health University (PHU), where they spent time learning, sharing and connecting. About 300 attendees networked and attended educational presentations over the course of three days, hearing how their peers are executing strategies to improve the health of individuals and populations, while better managing costs and improving operational performance. The innovations and successes shared were nothing less than remarkable. Holston Medical Group (HMG), for example, is using analytics to drive culture change among providers and achieve success with accountable care. HMG identifies high-risk patients and realigns care delivery priorities so providers see these individuals more frequently for better outcomes. In 18 months, HMG realized a double-digit reduction in hospital readmission rates among a select group of patients—even among those with complex chronic conditions. Plus, it added […]