Partners sends mobile data to EMR

June 21, 2013 in Medical Technology

In what may be one of the first integrations of its kind in the country, providers in the Boston-based Partners HealthCare system can now view patient data collected from mobile devices on their electronic medical record platform.

The population of mobile health monitoring data, including vital signs such as blood pressure, weight and blood glucose, in the EMR was made possible by the Center for Connected Health, a division of Partners that creates and validates the technology.

The process holds promise for millions of patients who require or would benefit from real-time monitoring, including those with chronic conditions or recently released from the hospital.

“By linking the center’s remote monitoring database to the Partners medical record system, we are taking an important step toward continuous chronic disease management. This is a significant part of how we are working to change care delivery, putting the patient at the center of their care while maintaining a close watch on their condition when they are not in the hospital or doctor’s office,” said James Noga, Partners’ vice president and chief information officer, in a press release.

“With a vision to the future, Partners has been committed to connected health for over a decade,” he added. “As a result, we have created one of the most robust remote monitoring platforms of any large healthcare system, and are well-positioned to incorporate patient-initiated data into healthcare decision-making.”

The integration of remote data, collected in real time through home-based monitoring systems, devices or wearable sensors, into the EMR has long been a topic of discussion in mHealth circles. Critics have worried than an infusion of new data could make EMRs – which have a rocky history of performance and acceptance among providers – even more cumbersome and therefore less likely to be implemented.

“What makes this program unique is that Partners is, I believe, the first to seamlessly integrate patient-collected data into their medical record system using their own proprietary technology platform, making it far easier and faster for their clinicians to access this important data. This is the next generation of patient management,” said Christopher Wasden, managing director and global healthcare innovation leader for PricewaterhouseCoopers, in the Partners press release. “Partners HealthCare and the Center for Connected Health are at the forefront of changing care delivery by applying technology to assist providers, empower patients and elevate the standards for patient care.”

“The care team now has a more comprehensive view of a patient’s condition, seeing that individual’s day-to-day vital signs, real-time response to medications and other important indicators of his or her health available through our remote monitoring programs,” added Joseph C. Kvedar, MD, the center’s founder and director. “At the center, we have demonstrated the value of monitoring patients when they are outside the hospital or doctor’s office and can now seamlessly integrate this information into the clinical workflow to help improve patient care and efficiencies.”

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