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Patient-centered IT tools linked to quality improvements
06.22.2012Healthcare technologies that allow doctors to focus all their attention on treating individuals, the kind typically used in patient centered medical homes, may lead to improved care quality, according to a new study.
The research was funded by the Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research. It sought to assess the ability of patient-centered health IT tools to improve treatment outcomes and other measures of care quality. They found that these systems typically do enhance a number of important areas.
The results showed that patient-centered health IT tools typically improve treatment outcomes for diabetes, heart disease, cancer and other conditions. Technology systems also lead to gains in doctor-patient communication, the responsiveness of providers to patient needs, collaborative decision-making and access to health data. The findings are based on a review of 327 previously published studies assessing the effect of health IT tools on care.
Findings from the report could play an important role in continuing support for the use of patient-centered health IT systems. There is currently a major debate about the role this technology should play in healthcare. Individual studies have shown that IT may actually interfere with quality, while others have suggested that systems can lead to major gains.
A few barriers may exist to the adoption of effective health IT tools. The researchers noted that some studies have shown that physicians can be resistant to the adoption of this technology, as many think it interferes with productivity.
However, when looked at as a whole, the evidence points to major improvements associated with the use of health IT systems. The findings suggest that patient centered medical homes, which generally rely on such technology, may deliver high-quality care.
Categories: Patient-Centered Medical Homes
Paul Grundy, M.D., explains that patient-centered medical homes provide an example of the … more
A new study shows that patient-centered decision making may have health benefits for patients.