Health information refers to those information, evidences and data that determines the health and facilitates policy making. The procedure required to obtain the health information and use this health information in the policy making can be described as the public health monitoring and reporting.
This paper will give an idea about how the health information exchange via electronically helps the members of the accountable care unit to disseminate the necessary patient information among the team members to provide a reliable safe and combined care to the patients.
Accountable care organizations (ACOs) are team of doctors, hospitals and other health care professionals who voluntarily come together to give a coordinated care to the Medicare patients (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, 2013). Coordinated care team involves many doctors and nurses; hence it is necessary to disseminate the patient information between the members of the team to provide a coordinated care (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, 2013).
The health information exchange permits the doctors and the nurses and other health professionals to access and share the medical information of a patient electronically. This helps to increase the speed of the delivery, saves time and cost. Accountable care organizations are the new payment and the delivery innovations that have come up in the United States (Hacker & Walker, 2013). These organizations involve the network of organizations that comprises of doctors, hospitals and nurses for the care of the defined population of patients. The paper aims to discuss about the roles of the health information exchange via technologies in Accountable care organizations in the United States. Health information exchange (HIE) plays an important role in the coordination of the various aspects of care of a patient (Wager, Lee & Glaser, 2017). The Accountable care model is diffusing country wide and it has been reported that the dissemination of the health care information can improve the health population and can reduce the cost of the health care. Health information can be useful in the standardization of the clinical work force, management of the medications, reduction of the medication errors, and improving the health care by the management of the chronic illness (Hacker & Walker, 2013).
Transparency in a health care setting involving a multidisciplinary team can be maintained by a health information technology. Starting from the recording of the doctor's order to the medications all can be disseminated electronically (Hacker & Walker, 2013).
The health information exchange services in United States include a statewide or a region wise health information exchange organizations. The service includes a repository of the health records of the patients with interfaces with the participating organizations (Hersh et al., 2015).
A record locator services (RLS) having a master piece index and an integrated machine, automated notification service, Health information exchange services (HISPs), directory services (Wager, Lee & Glaser, 2017).
In general three forms of health information exchange system is followed in this initiative. They are -
Direct exchange- This technique enables to share secured and confidential information electronically between the care providers. Directed exchange can be used by the teams of the coordinated care unit for sharing the laboratory results, discharge summaries and patient referrals (Wager, Lee & Glaser, 2017). The information can be sent through the internet in an encrypted and secured manner. It strives for the benefit of both the patients and the care providers. Immunization data can also be sent to the public health organizations or report the necessary quality measures to the centers of Medicaid and Medicare services (Hersh et al., 2015).
Query based exchange- the ability for the patient to request information form the other members of the coordinate care team. The physicians in the emergency rooms can use the query based information system for accessing the information of the patients such as the radiology images, life saving medications. This time of exchange is very useful for pregnant patients and allows them to take safer decisions regarding their unborn baby (Rudin et al., 2014).
Consumer mediated exchange- The ability of the patient to control the use of the information related to health aiming the providers. Patients can participate in their coordinated care actively by providing the patients with their health information. This facilitates the identification and correction of the missing or wrong health information. It helps to track and monitor their own health (Pevnick et al.,2012).
Role of health information exchange on costs
Health information exchange helps to maintain the standards of the patient care by involving technologies in the involvement of technologies can curtail costs by reducing the manual printing, scanning and documenting involving the costs of ink and paper, maintenance of the related machineries of the office.
Furthermore the physical mailing of the charts and the records of the patients consumes time as well as helps to reduce the phone related costs for the verification of the documents (Hersh et al., 2015).
It can be said that the health information services allows the patients, nurses, doctors and the pharmacists to share a patient's vital information among the members of the accountable care team. Sharing of the information electronically saves time, speed, money and brings reliability in the patients care.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. (2013). Accountable care organizations (ACO). nd https://www. cms. gov/Medicare/Medicare-Fee-for-Service-Payment/ACO/index. html.
Hacker, K., & Walker, D. K. (2013). Achieving population health in accountable care organizations. American journal of public health, 103(7), 1163-1167.
Hersh, W., Totten, A., Eden, K., Devine, B., Gorman, P., Kassakian, S., ... & McDonagh, M. S. (2015). Health information exchange.
Pevnick, J. M., Claver, M., Dobalian, A., Asch, S. M., Stutman, H. R., Tomines, A., & Fu, P. (2012). Provider stakeholders’ perceived benefit from a nascent health information exchange: a qualitative analysis. Journal of medical systems, 36(2), 601-613.
Rudin, R. S., Motala, A., Goldzweig, C. L., & Shekelle, P. G. (2014). Usage and Effect of Health Information ExchangeA Systematic ReviewUsage and Effect of Health Information Exchange. Annals of internal medicine, 161(11), 803-811.
Wager, K. A., Lee, F. W., & Glaser, J. P. (2017). Health care information systems: a practical approach for health care management. John Wiley & Sons.