When It Comes to Cost, Personal Health IT May be Key

Personal health information may be key to reducing the costs of care. To work most efficiently, patient participation and compliance will be necessary.

Personal health information may be key to reducing the costs of care. To work most efficiently, patient participation and compliance will be necessary.

“Providers and patients must continue to partner together to improve the health status and overall population health in the US. Health information technologies are a tool to make that partnership a reality, and an empowered patient,” said Mary Griskewicz senior director of healthcare information systems at the Health Information Management and Systems Society.

Every patient’s profile can vary depending on their personal risk factors, or even socioeconomic status. To improve costs of care as well as patient outcomes, it will be important to consider and incorporate individuals’ preferences and values in their course of care. This may include making observations of their daily living, behavior, and habits. One way to monitor patient health is through technology tools, or personal health IT (PHIT).

“Adoption of digital technologies has gone mainstream in the US, and self-service behaviors are coming to healthcare,” said Jane Sarasohn-Kahn, a health economist and advisor for THINK-Health. “The catalysts for change are activated, engaged consumers who are motivated to maintain a healthy state, manage chronic conditions, or alter lifestyle choices upon a new diagnosis. Additional catalysts include patients’ increased financial burdens and demand for greater transparency on price and quality of health services.”

With PHIT, providers can improve value and engage better with patients. They can also encourage the use of meaningful technology use instead of the use of devices like overhyped digital wearables. There is also a possibility for more meaningful use of mobile technology.

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