ATLANTA, Georgia, March 26, 2009 – It is almost axiomatic that when a patient is well engaged with his/her doctor and therapists, cooperation and compliance improve and the healing process generally proceeds more quickly and more effectively.
With a well-conceived software system supporting the doctor-patient relationship, active engagement in identifying problems and organizing and executing the treatment plan can begin at the front door and continue at a high level through recovery, discharge and beyond, according to Vais Salikhov, Chief Software Engineer at the Healthcare Division of ACOM Solutions, Inc.
Salikhov is responsible for design and development of the division’s chiropractic software and in that capacity, he has researched and engineered ways in which patient involvement can be developed and sustained throughout the doctor-patient relationship.
“Using old-fashioned paper-based office processes, this has not always been easy,” he said. “Paper-based notes and reports take time. They require front office effort, distract the doctor during the exam and often can distance the patient from the caregivers, leaving him or her feeling uninvolved in his/her own healthcare.”
Electronic medical records (EMR) solutions incorporate gateways for patient involvement almost continuously as they support doctors in inaugurating and monitoring the treatment plan:
* Self-registration: On arrival for the first visit, the patient fills out an electronic form comprising not only personal and insurance information but also describing the nature and severity of the complaint. This opens the patient file, which the patient updates on each subsequent visit, generating an immediate sense of participation.
* Examination: Using a tablet computer, the doctor opens the patient file and reviews each element of the complaint in detail, creating notes interactively by means of diagrams and checklists with associated text. Personal contact is maintained throughout and as the patient elaborates, the doctor can supplement the notes with on-screen scribing.
* Treatment: As treatment progresses, the doctor demonstrates progress using on-board interim reports that underscore what is working, and where the patient might do more.
* Conclusion: Once the treatment plan has been completed, the doctor can review the complete electronic record thoroughly with the patient, discuss what was done and why, and demonstrate the efficacy of the process.
* Wellness: Often a wellness program can be beneficial to the patient and using the comprehensive case records that have been assembled, the doctor can more easily establish the rationale.