Electronic media is ensuring accuracy in healthcare
Written by Jennifer Bell
Amazing progress in technology in the last two decades has brought many innovations in patient care and one of the most important is the emphasis on the storage of patient records. From dog tags to medic-alert bracelets and laminated wallet cards; throughout history, most people have worn or carried their critical medical information with them wherever they go. This may never change. However, what is changing is the way that doctors and other healthcare professionals are collecting and recording patient’s medical records.
Traditionally, tasks such as maintaining records, sending in medical claim forms and scheduling appointments were performed by hand and recorded on paper. However, there are a number of healthcare organisations that are now using sophisticated electronic media to speed up these processes and ensure accuracy.
There are many hospitals and surgeries all over the world that use electronic data cards to gather, record and store patient information. Medical history and other critical data is embedded into a microchip on what is most often known as a smart card, so it can then be retrieved from anywhere in the organisation. Such a system is configured to help hospital personnel correctly identify each patient and eliminate errors. To make this possible, smart cards have a digital photograph of the cardholder and a digital signature function to firmly verify the identity of the patient.
However, each advance in technology brings new challenges. As the medical profession moves from paper to electronic storage of information, the requirement to keep patient records secure and confidential looms larger than ever before. Stringent controls must therefore be put in place to protect confidentiality, especially if this sensitive information is going to be stored online in the cloud or in a shared network.
A number of studies have been conducted into these electronic devices and researchers have found the cards can provide many benefits to both patients and providers. Results show the gadgets can shorten patient registration time by quickly and accurately collecting and processing patient information. The use of electronic cards can also eliminate paperwork and reduce clerical errors, as well as helping to connect all hospital departments to provide consistent care. They can also simplify the laborious task of filling out insurance eligibility forms and the researchers concluded that along with their multi-functional uses, patient privacy was still protected.
Mistakes occur when physicians and emergency room personnel do not have fast and easy access to the medical history of their patients. These smart cards are the perfect solution for both patients and providers and even people who travel frequently can rest easy in the knowledge that their health care facts are complete, accurate and rapidly accessible.
The benefit of patient history cards by Dr Boyd Lyles, the founding director of the Heart Health and Wellness Center, Dallas, Texas:
This article was contributed by Jennifer Bell from healthtrainingguide.com.
Introducing Dosis - the AI powered dosing platform
Cloud-based platform Dosis uses AI to help patients and clinicians tailor their medication plans. Shivrat Chhabra, CEO and co-founder, tells us how it works.
When and why was Dosis founded?
Divya, my co-founder and I founded Dosis in 2017 with the purpose of creating a personalised dosing platform. We see personalisation in so many aspects of our lives, but not in the amount of medication we receive. We came across some research at the University of Louisville that personalised the dosing of a class of drugs called ESAs that are used to treat chronic anaemia. We thought, if commercialised, this could greatly benefit the healthcare industry by introducing precision medicine to drug dosing.
The research also showed that by taking this personalised approach, less drugs were needed to achieve the same or better outcomes. That meant that patients were exposed to less medication, so there was a lower likelihood of side effects. It also meant that the cost of care was reduced.
What is the Strategic Anemia Advisor?
Dosis’s flagship product, Strategic Anemia Advisor (SAA), personalises the dosing of Erythropoiesis Stimulating Agents (ESAs). ESAs are a class of drugs used to treat chronic anaemia, a common complication of chronic kidney disease.
SAA takes into account a patient’s previous ESA doses and lab levels, determines the patient’s unique response to the drug and outputs an ESA dose recommendation to keep the patient within a specified therapeutic target range. Healthcare providers use SAA as a clinical decision support tool.
What else is Dosis working on?
In the near term, we are working on releasing a personalised dosing module for IV iron, another drug that’s used in tandem with ESAs to treat chronic anaemia. We’re also working on personalising the dosing for the three drugs used to treat Mineral Bone Disorder. We’re very excited to expand our platform to these new drugs.
What are Dosis' strategic goals for the next 2-3 years?
We strongly believe that personalised dosing will be the standard of care within the next decade, and we’re honored to be a part of making that future a reality. In the next few years, we see Dosis entering partnerships with other companies that operate within value-based care environments, where tools like ours that help reduce cost while maintaining or improving outcomes are extremely useful.
What do you think AI's greatest benefits to healthcare are?
If designed well, AI in healthcare allows for a practical and usable way to deploy solutions that would not be feasible otherwise. For example, it’s possible for someone to manually solve the mathematical equations necessary to personalise drug dosing, but it is just not practical. AI in healthcare offers an exciting path forward for implementing solutions that for so long have appeared impractical or impossible.