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Journal Article > Commentary
Ho A, Quick O. BMC Med Ethics. 2018;19:18.
Although use of smart technologies for self-diagnosis and care management offers patients convenience, cost-savings, and expediency, they may also contribute to poor decision-making and harm. This commentary explores the impact of direct-to-consumer monitoring devices and smartphone applications on care and the therapeutic relationship. The authors advocate for regulation and assessment regarding accuracy of these tools.
Journal Article > Study
Chimowitz H, Gerard M, Fossa M, Bourgeois F, Bell SK. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf. 2018;44:130-136.
Patients frequently depend on informal caregivers (e.g., family, friends, or paid workers) to assist with various aspects of medical care, such as medication administration and travel to medical appointments. OpenNotes seeks to share clinicians' notes with patients through patient portals. Although patients frequently grant portal access to caregivers, the impact of this improved access to health information on the safety of care provided by caregivers remains unknown. Researchers sent a survey to 24,722 patients participating in OpenNotes who had at least one available visit note during the study period. The surveys were sent through the patient portal. Out of the 7058 surveys returned, 150 respondents self-identified as caregivers. Analysis of survey data revealed that access to patient notes enhanced caregiver understanding of recommended medical care including tests and referrals, reminded them about necessary testing, helped them understand results, reminded them about appointments, and improved caregiver ability to assist patients with medications. An Annual Perspective discussed the potential of health information technology to improve patient and caregiver engagement in safety.
Community-based health coaches and care coordinators reduce readmissions using information technology to identify and support at-risk Medicare patients after discharge.
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Health Care Innovations Exchange. July 30, 2014.
This article describes an intervention that trained health coaches to use mobile technology to assess the health status of recently discharged Medicare patients, first during an in-home visit 48 hours after leaving the hospital and then with weekly phone calls over a 3-week period. The program resulted in decreased readmission rates and significant cost savings.