The seventh special issue of The American Journal of Managed Care® features studies on the use of personal health records on smartphones and the cost-effectiveness of eConsults in cardiology.
CRANBURY, N.J.—The seventh special issue on health information technology (IT) from The American Journal of Managed Care® (AJMC®) marks a turning point: the topic is no longer just about measuring large sets of data, but also about empowering patients with their own information and controlling costs.
Health IT is still doing the big things—with wide variation—but the growing expectation that everyone must do something makes for creative solutions, and the 2018 special issue broadens the scope of what falls under the umbrella of “health IT.’’ Guest Editor Jacob Reider, MD, who is CEO of the Alliance for Better Health, opens with an insightful essay on how health IT has moved beyond the “early adopters,” yet has not quite embedded itself into systems; practices are at various points on the path. Reider says not everything is working as intended, and it’s time to ask how to make optimal use of technology to deliver better health, better care experiences, and lower costs.
Authors and studies featured in the issue include:
Personal health records on mobile phones. Ilana Graetz, PhD, the 2017 winner of the Seema S. Sonnad, PhD, Emerging Leader in Managed Care Research Award, presented by AJMC®, is the lead author of a study in the issue on delivering personal health records to patients with diabetes. The study found that minority patients and those who lived in lower socioeconomic status areas were significantly more likely to engage their records from a mobile device only.
“Of note,” the authors wrote, “we found that patients with diabetes who were not considered to be highly engaged in their health (ie, not previously adherent to chronic condition medications and recommended preventive care services) were significantly more likely to use the [health records] exclusively via a mobile device.”
Cardiology eConsults save Medicaid dollars. A study of 369 Connecticut Medicaid patients found that those who were randomly assigned to electronic consults for cardiology consults instead of face-to-face appointments had lower costs per patient ($655 for face-to-face vs $466 for the eConsult). The eConsult patients had $81 lower costs per patient in outpatient cardiac procedures.
Meaningful Use reduced disparities. A study featuring authors from Weill-Cornell Medical College and last year’s guest editor of the Health IT issue, Joshua R. Vest, PhD, MPH, evaluated inpatient claims for 2.4 million Medicare beneficiaries from Florida, New York, and Washington state; while participation in the Meaningful Use initiative of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act was not associated with significant reductions in the broader Medicare population, it did make a difference in reducing readmissions among African American beneficiaries.
For the full issue, click here.
About The American Journal of Managed Care®:
The American Journal of Managed Care® (AJMC®) is a peer-reviewed, MEDLINE-indexed journal that keeps readers on the forefront of health policy by publishing research relevant to industry decision makers as they work to promote the efficient delivery of high-quality care. AJMC.com is the essential website for managed care professionals, distributing industry updates daily to leading stakeholders. Other titles in the AJMC® family include The American Journal of Accountable Care®, and two evidence-based series, Evidence-Based Oncology™ and Evidence-Based Diabetes Management™. These comprehensive offerings bring together stakeholder views from payers, providers, policymakers and other industry leaders in managed care. To order reprints of articles appearing in AJMC® publications, please contact Jeff Prescott at 609-716-7777, ext. 331.
Theresa Burek, 609-716-7777