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HIEs and Patient Engagement – Why and Why Now?

Posted on June 20, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

The following is a guest post by Jeff Donnell, President of NoMoreClipboard.
Jeff Donnell - NoMoreClipboard PHR
Health information exchanges have become quite adept at moving medical data from provider to provider on behalf of patients, but making that data available to those same patients has rarely been attempted – until recently.

Not including patients at the HIE exchange table is understandable, but ironic. Understandable for reasons ranging from policy challenges to a lack of standards to technical limitations. Ironic because HIEs are ideally positioned to aggregate data from multiple providers – leveraging the interfaces already in place with provider applications – and deliver that data to consumers, overcoming several of the major barriers to patient adoption and use of tools like PHRs and patient portals.

HIEs have recently grown interested in supporting electronic patient engagement, in large part based on provider inquiries regarding meaningful use stage two requirements. Many providers are looking for affordable alternatives to the tethered patient portals being offered by their EHR vendors, and they want to provide their patients with a solution that can be used across the care continuum. Increasingly, providers recognize that a patient who visits five different clinicians is not about to create five different patient portal accounts. Savvy providers realize that the HIE is well equipped to provide portable, interoperable solutions.

For HIEs interested in long-term sustainability, patient engagement makes perfect sense. The HIE can leverage its existing interfaces and aggregated data – making existing medical information available to patients from a single pipe, in a standardized format. The HIE can act as a conduit between consumers and clinicians – adding value for all parties. Providers can transmit data to patients, and recent CMS guidance indicates that all providers who contribute data to a shared portal (like that provided by an HIE) can count patients who use that portal toward their 5% patient participation requirement. Patients avoid having to collect data from every provider they see, and can populate a PHR or HIE portal account with existing electronic data. Everybody wins.

The value is evident, but what about those challenges? In the state of Indiana, we received an ONC Challenge Grant to figure out how to get HIE data in the hands of consumers with a PHR. We are fortunate to reside in a state with five well-established HIEs and a provider community eager to innovate, and we have spent the last two years working on those challenges (giving us a real appreciation for why the ONC affixed the challenge label to this grant program). We have addressed issues ranging from patient ID/Auth/Match to minor consent to provider skepticism to amended data use agreements. We have overcome any number of obstacles to get data flowing, and we are seeing increased levels of engagement and enhanced clinical outcomes.

We have learned any number of lessons to help other HIEs, state agencies and healthcare providers avoid pitfalls and make accelerated progress. We are eager to share what we have learned. Perhaps the most important lesson is to get started now – as crafting and implementing a patient engagement strategy takes time. As nobody appears to be manufacturing more time these days, HIEs and other organizations that envision sharing data with patients even a year or two down the road would be well advised to begin working in earnest, with an eye on making incremental progress.

Jeff Donnell is president of NoMoreClipboard, a web-based, Personal Health Record (PHR) management system designed to consolidate medical information in one convenient and secure location for easy retrieval and updates. NMC enables consumers to share personal or family member medical information with medical professionals electronically, reducing the need for repetitive medical paperwork.  Jeff and the company are committed to developing PHR applications that are consumer-friendly, interactive, secure, mobile and interoperable.  For more information, follow us on Twitter @NoMoreClipboard or visit www.NoMoreClipboard.com.

Two Primary Obstacles to PHR Adoption per Epic

Posted on May 11, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I recently happened upon the interoperability page on Epic’s website. Yes, I realize the irony of Epic and interoperability in the same sentence. In fact, that’s why I was so intrigued by what Epic had on their website about interoperability.

I’ll leave what they called the “physician-guided” interoperability using their Care Everywhere product for another post. In this post I just want to highlight their “freestanding Personal Health Record (PHR)” section. I was most intrigued by what Epic lists on that page as the “two primary obstacles to patient PHR adoption”:

Lucy [Epic’s PHR] is free of the two primary obstacles to patient PHR adoption:
1. There are no advertisements on Lucy.
2. Epic will not sell patient data for secondary uses.

I find this really intriguing. Let’s look at each one individually.

First, I can’t say I’ve ever heard someone say that the reason they aren’t using an EHR is because of the advertisements. I’m sure there are a few out there that wouldn’t enjoy the ads and might not use a PHR because of them, but I believe they are few and far between. Plus, PHR use has been so low that most haven’t used a PHR enough to have seen ads. So, that’s not an obstacle. Not to mention, what PHR software has ads there now? As best to my knowledge Microsoft HealthVault, NoMoreClipboard and even the now defunct Google Health have never shown ads before.

Now to the second point about selling patient data for secondary uses. This could potentially be a bigger issue. There’s little doubt that there’s value in aggregate health data. A PHR is a legitimate way to collect that aggregate health data. Some certainly have some fear of their individualized health data being learned and so they don’t want to input their health data into a PHR. However, I believe there’s a larger majority that don’t care about this all that much. Sure, they want to make sure that the PHR uses proper security in their system. They also don’t want their individual data sold, but I expect a large user base doesn’t really care if aggregate healthcare data is sold in order for them to get a product that provides value to them.

In fact, this highlights the real problem with PHR software generally. To date, the PHR has offered little value to the patient. This is the primary obstacle to patient PHR adoption. I’ve hypothesized previously a couple things that could change that patient value equation: physician interaction in the PHR and paper work completion.

The real problem with PHR software is providing the patient value, not ads or sold patient data.

iMPak Health with NoMoreClipboard – Healthcare Gadget Friday

Posted on April 27, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Our next entry in Healthcare Gadget Friday is the iMPak Health Journals from Meridian Health and NoMoreClipboard. You may remember that I called the iMPak Health Journals the most creative technology I found at HIMSS 12. As such I wanted to write more about how they worked.

Here’s a picture I took of the iMPak Health Journal:

It certainly looks pretty simple and it is. That’s done by design. You basically use the iMPak health journal by pressing down on the blue and red circles. Pressing these “buttons” kind of reminds me of the musical greeting cards you get. When you’d press it down the music would start playing. This works very similar. Although, you push the red button to start and then each of the blue buttons represent a response to a healthcare question. It’s as simple as that. You hold down the buttons and it records your answers.

Then, the next time you go for an appointment or through an NFC (near field communication) connection to your cell phone (almost all new cell phones will have this technology) the data is uploaded electronically to the NoMoreClipboard website. From there all of the data can be processed and seen by yourself and your doctor.

I’d hoped to have a video where you could see the use of the iMPak journal, but I wasn’t able to get one that did a nice demo. What I found so creative was how simple it was to collect data from a patient. They didn’t need to download an app. They didn’t need to buy an expensive device that they’re only going to use for a limited time.

Turns out that there are a lot of potential uses for these journals. Some areas that might find them useful are: Insurance Companies, Hospitals / Health Systems, Pharmacy Benefit Management, Pharmaceutical Companies, Employer Benefits Management, and Retail Pharmacies. Here’s a video which shows how it can be used:

One challenge that still exists with this device is getting patients to remember to use the device. A built in alarm that would go off to remind them to answer the questions could help to solve that problem. Although, the journal is so portable, I’d hate to have the alarm go off as you carry it around in your purse or something.

I’ll also be interested to see how many patients lose their iMPak journal or just forget to bring it to the office for their appointment. This isn’t an issue if they’ve been uploading their data using their own cell phone, but would be an issue in those cases where they’re uploading the data in the office.

The biggest competitor to this product is the various mobile health apps that are cropping up. One day I can see the mobile health apps really taking over this space. However, there are still many patients who don’t carry a smart phone or that can’t/won’t go to the hassle of downloading an app to track this stuff. In those cases, I find the iMPak Health Journal a really creative solution to getting the data to be able to provide better patient care.


Full Disclosure: NoMoreClipboard is an advertiser on this site.

PHR Options for Meeting Meaningful Use Stage 2

Posted on March 29, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

An EHR vendor recently asked me for some suggestions of PHR or portal options that they could use with their EHR software. Turns out that this is going to be particularly important given the changes in meaningful use stage 2 that require you to not only share medical information with the patient, but the patients have to actually access that information as well (unless that gets taken out in the MU stage 2 rule making process). Regardless, the question of which PHR and/or patient portal solutions was an interesting question. Here’s my answer to him (with a little bit added):

I only know of a few and you’ve probably heard of the ones I know about. I’m also not sure of the price of the various options really [He wanted to know of an inexpensive option]. Here’s what I know:

I like what NoMoreClipboard has done and that they’ve been doing it a really long time. They have a good understanding of how to work with many different vendors and also sizes of practices or healthcare institutions. Plus, you can be sure they’re going to be on top of all the meaningful use stage 2 requirements you’ll need to meet.

I also know that Medical Web Experts was working hard on a patient portal. I’m not sure how far it’s come since I first talked to them though. It might be one worth checking out. Just be sure that they can meet the meaningful use stage 2 requirements.

Then, of course you have Microsoft HealthVault. Everyone seems to know about them. I’ve heard that they’re a bit of a challenge to integrate with. Hopefully they also don’t have the same fate as Google Health. Although, Microsoft has a much better position in healthcare than Google ever did.

Coincidentally, I also was just emailed about a brand new book just released by O’Reilly Media about HealthVault and how to integrate with it. It’s called Enabling Programmable Self with HealthVault: An Accessible Personal Health Record. I’ve heard it’s a pretty technical book that would be quite useful if you decided to go with Healthvault for your PHR.

What other PHR and/or patient portal options are out there? I’m sure there are more that I’m missing and have probably just forgotten about them.

I’ll be interested to see if meaningful use stage 2 will drive the return of the PHR.

Full Disclosure: NoMoreClipboard is an advertiser on this site.

Great Period for EMR and HIPAA

Posted on March 14, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I use to do this a lot more when I started blogging, but I’m so busy with all the Healthcare Scene blogs that I don’t do it nearly as much. Although, I think it’s interesting to take a quick look at some of the stats for EMR and HIPAA and also take a minute to recognize the new and renewing advertisers on the site. I hope you’ll indulge me for a minute and you’ll take a look at those companies that support the work I do here on EMR and HIPAA. Most of them are not only sponsors of the site, but also readers. That means a lot to me.

First, let’s take a look at some stats for EMR and HIPAA. This will be the 1,318th post and there have been 6417 comments on those posts. That’s about 5 comments a post which is pretty incredible. According to WP.com stats, we’ve had 5,920,478 pageviews since I started using that stats program in July 2007. Since my first blog post was back in December 2005, that puts us well over 6 million pageviews.

This is astounding to me. I remember when I thought that maybe 1000 pageviews a day was the entire EHR market online. I’m glad I was wrong. Thanks for everyone that’s been reading. In fact, in another milestone, the EMR and HIPAA email subscription just blew by 4000 subscribers (now at 4,079). Considering I mistakenly didn’t start this email list until 2009, I’m happy that 4000 people want a daily email from EMR and HIPAA. Add in the 15,538 twitter followers on @ehrandhit and I’m humbled beyond belief.

Speaking of humbling experiences, this list of new and renewing EMR and HIPAA sponsors is really humbling as well. I’m very appreciative of their support.

New EMR and HIPAA Advertisers
Greenway – I’d been talking with Greenway for about a year about advertising on my network of websites. They might have been a little busy with something called an IPO (GWAY) that slowed the discussion. Now that the IPO is out of the way, we were able to finally finish up the details of Greenway advertising. For those who don’t know Greenway, they provide an integrated EHR and clinical research solution to more than 40,0000 providers in 30 specialties. Greenway has a single-database EHR, PM and interoperability solution called PrimeSUITE®. As one Greenway partner said to me at HIMSS, “Greenway is a good company with good people trying to do good for healthcare.” I can’t say I’ve seen anything to say otherwise.

NoMoreClipboard – The President of NoMoreClipboard, Jeff Donnell, was my first ever meeting at HIMSS. NoMoreClipboard has been doing some really interesting things since then including it’s most recent partnership with iMPak (see my interview with NoMoreClipboard and iMPak). I’d label iMPak as the most creative technology that I found at HIMSS 2012. Once I get a good demo video of the product, I’ll be doing a full post about it. It makes a lot of sense for the iMPak technology to be put together with the NoMoreClipboard technology. I’m looking forward to see what else they do together as well.

Online Tech – I think this is the first time I’ve had a web hosting company advertise on my site. After talking with Online Tech, I think I know why they want to advertise on EMR and HIPAA. Most hosting companies pay lip service to HIPAA, but Online Tech takes it very seriously. While I haven’t done a really deep dive into all the details of their hosting and HIPAA compliance, I could quickly tell how much HIPAA privacy and security was part of their culture. I believe HIPAA compliance is less about perfection and more about intent and effort. I think those who work with Online Tech won’t have to worry as much about being a “Covered Entity with Egg on Their Face.”

Renewing EMR and HIPAA Advertisers
Now to those companies that have renewed their ads on EMR and HIPAA since my last update:
Sequelmed (Advertising Since November 2009)
Ambir (Advertising Since January 2010)
Mitochon (Advertising Since December 2010)
Amazing Charts (Advertising Since May 2011)
Elsevier (Advertising Since September 2011)

As you can see, a number of them have been supporting EMR and HIPAA for a lot of years. I look forward to many more years working together with them.

No doubt this list and the numbers above set a high bar for me which I don’t take lightly. I’m sure I often don’t measure up, but I’ll keep doing what I can to provide value to people. Thanks for reading.

Healthcare Scene at HIMSS 2012

Posted on February 16, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

As many of you know, I posted my HIMSS 2012 session schedule on EMR and EHR a few weeks back. Sadly, many of those sessions have been taken off my schedule, but a number of really good ones still remain. I just counted 27 other meetings with vendors the week of HIMSS. I think it’s fair to say I’m doing my part to see as many as I can to provide you some really interesting coverage.

Outside of that hectic schedule, you’ll also be able to find me at a number of events (mostly social media related):
Meet the Bloggers Panel – This is happening Wed 2/22 4:00-5:00PM at the HIMSS Social Media Center. This will be a fun panel for me with two people I know quite well and love: Jennifer Dennard and Neil Versel. Plus, Carissa Caramanis O’Brien who I don’t know that well, but look forward to meeting as well. If you like social media or blogging, you’ll enjoy this.

HIMSS Social Media Center Genius Bar – I’ll be there Tuesday, 11:30 am-12:00 pm, Wednesday 10:30 am-11:00 am, and Thursday 11:30 am-12:00 pm at the HIMSS Social Media Center. Stop by and ask any question you want. You can make an appointment for it here.

New Media Meetup at HIMSS Sponsored by simplifyMD – We’re almost out of space for this event so I’ve stopped any major promotion of it. It amazes me the wonderful people on the list. Soon I’ll probably have to change it to a wait list signup once we reach capacity.

I also wanted to point out some of the interesting things that sponsors of EMR and HIPAA are doing at HIMSS. I just asked them for info late, so a number of my advertisers haven’t been able to get me anything yet. If they send me their info, I’ll update the post.


NoMoreClipboard, in collaboration with iMPak Health, will launch and demo a new comprehensive solution for achieving a successful medical home or accountable care organization. This new device, ideal for technology adverse patients, will help health systems and employers improve clinical outcomes, reduce ER visits and hospital readmissions and reduce chronic disease costs. See, feel, touch and participate in product demonstrations conducive to real-world scenarios and enter to win a $500 Best Buy gift card at HIMSS Booth #7902.
Location: Booth #7902


DrFirst is presenting the HIMSS Hero at this year’s event. DrFirst will be doing Chair and foot massages, a Caricature artist turning you into our Superhero, Collapsible water bottles, House Footies (DrFirst branded hospital socks), and Giving away an iPad 2. Stop by to learn more about DrFirst’s shift to an EHR platform company.
Location: Booth #5456


Cerner is excited to expand our presence at HIMSS12. The Cerner booth #476 will provide HIMSS attendees the opportunity to connect with peers, interact with Cerner associates and learn about Cerner solutions. Multiple Cerner clients will be in the booth to offer peer perspectives to physicians in attendance and to present how they are progressing in their journeys toward achieving Meaningful use, high quality measures and greater efficiency. Cerner associates will talk through complete workflow and documentation solutions for interdisciplinary teams, medications management, device connectivity, quality reporting, revenue cycle management and leading-edge services. In addition to the show floor, 15 Cerner clients will present in the general HIMSS educational tracks. Cerner will also participate in the Interoperability Showcase and IDC-10 Knowledge Center, where we will showcase specific solutions in respective areas.
Location: Booth #14542-, 476


GE Healthcare IT delivers workflow solutions for specialists and tools which provide insights for
hospital leadership to enable healthcare systems to run more effectively and efficiently- resulting
in better quality care for more patients at a lower cost. At HIMSS12, we’ll showcase highlights of
our extensive portfolio featuring numerous new product introductions. Now available, Centricity
Patient Portal 13 is a flexible, scalable, customizable portals that extends the provider workflow to
the patient’s home. With a range of easy-to-use self-service tools, Patient Online enhances patient
communications, optimizes staff and provider productivity, and can help strengthen the provider’s
market and competitive position. It helps customers meet Meaningful Use Stage 1 patient and
family engagement criteria and prepare them for expected Stage 2 requirements. Centricity
Perinatal-Connect provides the ability to correlate data from disparate Hospital Information
Systems (HIS) and other sources onto the fetal strip. It enables access to multiple fetal monitoring
strips while allowing documentation in the HIS all at the same time, without obstructing any
clinical information, helping clinicians deliver their best care all while maximizing current hospital
investment in perinatal IT. GE Healthcare IT will also demonstrate planned capabilities of its 50-50 joint venture with Microsoft, Caradigm, launching later this year.
Location: Booth #2635


This year, Practice Fusion has teamed up with Fitbit and our blogger friends Brian Ahier and Don Fluckinger to kick off our contest. Brian and Don will be competing for the most number of steps for a chance to win a charitable donation made by Practice Fusion in their name. HIMSS attendees interested in winning a Fitbit of their own can simply tweet their response to “Why do you want a Fitbit?” using the hashtags #fitbit and #HIMSS12 Unable to attend HIMSS12 but still want to experience the action? Virtual HIMSS12 is for you. Our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Robert Rowley and Las Vegas hand surgeon, Dr. Andrew Bronstein will be presenting an on-demand session titled Interoperability on the Front Lines: It’s Already Here.
Location: Booth #4074


HITR.com will exhibit at booth 7707 with its affiliates Billian’s HealthDATA and Porter Research. The HITR team is looking forward to meeting attendees and showing them the benefits a free membership in the HITR.com community can bring – healthcare IT benchmarking surveys and results, social networking opportunities, and more! Register at the booth to win one of our twice-daily Kindle drawings.
Location: Booth #7707


EHR Scope will be exhibiting in booth 13756. We’ll be doing video interviews for www.EHRtv.com, including some walk-in interviews. At the booth we’ll also be showing other activities of EHR Scope, including www.EMRConsultant.com, as well as Dragon Medical Spanish, which is now available for Latin America. In addition to the activities at the booth, we’ll have 2 roaming camera crews doing interviews of exhibitors, by appointment only.
Location: Booth #13756


At HIMSS, Amazing Charts is introducing Version 6.2, with the ability to connect with HIEs and PHRs automatically. On signing a note, the patient’s CCD is automatically uploaded to the patient selected PHR or HIE (See Screenshot). In 2011, Amazing Charts received the Best In KLAS Award for #1 EMR for 1-10 Physicians.
Location: Booth #13316


Mitochon is the first FREE ONC-ATCB Certified, web-based Electronic Health Record (EHR) Health Information Exchange (HIE) and Patient Health Record (PHR) solution for medical professionals. The FREE EHR platform combines Scheduling, Charting, ePrescribing Labs and Collaboration of Care. This year at HIMSS Mitochon has a major announcement taking place on Monday February 20th. Dr. AndreVovan, Founder and Chief Medical Officer for Mitochon stated “all roads are leading to Accountable Care Organizations (ACO)/Integrated Delivery Systems and Mitochon is positioned to enable organizations to reach that destination.” Look for this announcement to learn more about Mitochon’s new offering and check out Mitochon’s Booth #265.
Location: Booth #265

Silicon Valley Hype Machine Revs Up Again

Posted on August 18, 2011 I Written By

I hate to keep bashing Silicon Valley, since I’ve come to think that it’s venture capitalists, not tied to one particular region, who are the ones not “getting” healthcare. That said, we got a bit more overblown hyperbole coming out of Northern California this morning from drchrono.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based company, which likely is correct when it says it created the first EHR that it native to the iPad—and a free one at that—announced today that it has received an new round of $650,000 in seed funding  from the VC community. (Congratulations on that.) Drchrono today also introduced OnPatient, an iPad app that replaces the hated clipboard and paper form for taking patient history at the doctor’s office. Here are the details, from the drchrono press release:

drchrono Launches iPad App to Replace Paper-Based Check-In at Doctor’s Office; Closes Additional $650,000 in Seed Funding

Free OnPatient App Digitizes Patient Waiting Room and Integrates Seamlessly with Electronic Medical Records

Mountain View, CA – August 18, 2011 – drchrono, the company modernizing healthcare through a free Electronic Health Record (EHR) platform on the iPad, today announced a new patient check-in app which replaces the traditional paper check-in process in the physician waiting room. OnPatient is an app that can be downloaded to the iPad for free and integrated into a medical practice as a stand alone onboard app. The patient check-in app also seamlessly integrates with drchrono’s Meaningful Use-certified iPad EHR.

On the heels of the OnPatient product launch, drchrono recently closed an additional $650,000 in seed funding from prominent start-up investor Yuri Milner, founder of DST Global, and venture capital firm General Catalyst. This follows $675,000 in seed funding from General Catalyst, Charles River Ventures, 500 Startups and angel investors, previously announced in July.

“The OnPatient check-in app digitizes the waiting room and eliminates significant barriers to mass adoption of patient check-in technology by leveraging sophisticated iPad technology. Proprietary check-in hardware is prohibitively expensive and integration with existing EHR systems is too complex,” said Michael Nusimow, co-founder and CEO of drchrono. “We designed the OnPatient app to be intuitive for both physicians and patient users to create a better patient check-in experience.”

OnPatient is a full-featured app with customizable templates that enable physicians to eliminate paper forms and clipboards in the waiting room. There are no contracts or monthly fees; the only hardware investment is the iPad itself. Upon download, the OnPatient app allows patients to:

  • Complete family medical history and demographic information
  • Complete insurance information
  • Snap a profile photo
  • Sign the HIPAA consent form with a digital signature

The touch screen interface is user-friendly and the information auto-populates directly into the drchrono EHR platform. On subsequent visits, patients do not have to complete duplicate forms—they need only review their information and make any necessary changes on the iPad. OnPatient meets all industry security standards, ensuring the privacy and safety of patient data.

For more information on drchrono and the OnPatient app, please visit www.drchrono.com.

About drchrono: 

drchrono focuses on Apple’s iPad and cloud computing to build a better healthcare experience.

They offer a free EHR platform built on the iPad that is Meaningful Use certified.  drchrono is also the first iPad EHR to implement real time clinical speech-to-text. drchrono handles everything a doctor needs to run their practice, including medical records, electronic prescribing, medical billing, and patient management.  For more information, visit https://drchrono.com

The drchrono iPad EHR is 2011/2012 compliant and has been certified by InfoGard Laboratories, an ONC-ATCB, as a complete EHR in accordance with the applicable certification criteria adopted by the Secretary of Health and Human Services. This certification does not represent an endorsement by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or guarantee the receipt of incentive payments. drchrono version 9.0 was Stage 1 certified on June 3, 2011. The ONC certification ID number is IG-2492-11-0083

 

What got me was the claim in the e-mail that accompanied the press release. “Today, drchrono, a hot Y Combinator start-up focused on Apple’s iPad and cloud computing to build a better healthcare experience, announced OnPatient, a groundbreaking app that digitizes the medical practice waiting room,” the message started. This was the same claim that drchrono included in a media advisory earlier in the week.

Sorry, there is nothing “groundbreaking” about software that collects medical history electronically and automatically populates an EHR with this information. Instant Medical History, a program from Primetime Medical Software, Columbia, S.C., has been doing this for years. Though it is primarily a PHR vendor, NoMoreClipboard.com‘s name betrays one of its products, a patient portal for medical practices that collects patient history online. ePatientHistory.com is similar.

No, IMH does not have a native iPad app, but it’s worked on tablets going back to the bulky Windows tablets circa 2003, even if few customers actually chose that option. NoMoreClipboard.com is Web-based, which means it’s accessible from any device with a Web browser such as, say, an iPad.

When I called the publicist on the “groundbreaking” claim, I got this back. “Of the physicians I’ve spoken to, the user-friendly interface of the iPad app really makes patient onboarding easy and they love the ‘novelty factor’ of using the iPad as well. It’s less intimidating for patients who have limited experience with healthcare IT.”

Fair enough. But that doesn’t make OnPatient “groundbreaking.” The iPad is groundbreaking. OnPatient is interesting, useful and frankly, long-overdue competition to Instant Medical History. I hope it catches on. But it’s not much of a breakthrough.

I can’t wait to see the breathless coverage from the other tech press who don’t know the, ahem, history (sorry, couldn’t resist). If you want the unvarnished, occasionally acidic truth, come here.

For that matter, here’s the company’s own message, via video:

It’s rather low-key, actually. I have just one question: Why do they say “tax breaks” for meaningful use? The money is in the form of Medicare/Medicaid bonus payments. As EMR and HIPAA readers know, those payments are considered taxable income. Just sayin’.

 

Breaking: The Real People Behind Extormity

Posted on February 22, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

As many of you know, EMR and HIPAA is a big time news company. We have a really fat budget and pay our reporters huge amounts of money to sit and smoke cigars while producing very little content of value.

One of our biggest expenses here at HIMSS is in our investigative reporting department. Our motto is that if someone else breaks a story before us, then we spend the money to break them. Yes, we’re very serious about spending outrageous money breaking stories that no one else can break.

After 3 years of investigation (and no government stimulus money), we’ve finally cracked the code on who’s behind the famous (and hilarious) Extormity EHR software. They’ve been very good about concealing their identity before their big HIMSS press conference in 312C, West Building.

The people behind Extormity EHR is actually the obviously creative and innovative people at MIE – Medical Informtics Engineering and NoMoreClipboard

Credit them for their creativity and bringing to light the atrocities that I call Jabba the Hutt EHR vendors. The good thing for MIE is that I don’t consider them a Jabba the Hutt EHR vendor like the popular Extormity EHR that they created.

More news later after the press conference and presentation at HIT X.0 on Thursday.

EMRandHIPAA.com’s HIMSS11 coverage is sponsored by Practice Fusion, provider of the free, web-based Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system used by over 70,000 healthcare providers in the US.

Request an Appointment and Send Your Record Using a PHR

Posted on October 29, 2010 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I recently sat down with Jeff Donnell from NoMoreClipboard. We had a fascinating all around conversation, but one of the most fascinating things he told me was the story of his last visit to his doctor’s office. I’ll do my best to recount what he told me.

When he decided he needed to go see the doctor for a visit his wife suggested that he call the doctor to make an appointment. Of course, Jeff “eats his own dog food” and decided that instead of calling for an appointment, he’d request an appointment through NoMoreClipboard. So, he logged into his account and sent off the request for an appointment with his PHR attached. Pretty interesting idea no?

Don’t ask me why, but when possible I’d much rather request something through my computer. Maybe it’s sitting on hold while you wait to talk to someone that’s turned me off to the phone call, but the idea that I could request an appointment online even if the doctor isn’t on NoMoreClipboard is a pretty attractive feature for a PHR.

Of course, since Jeff’s doctor wasn’t on NoMoreClipboard, his appointment request and health record were faxed to his doctor’s office. He got a call from the doctor and scheduled his appointment. The story certainly doesn’t end there.

When he arrived at the doctor’s office he wondered if they’d have his record or not. They handed him the standard clipboard to fill out all the paperwork. He still said nothing and dutifully filled out the paperwork. No one said anything about the record he’d sent until he was with the doctor and the doctor realized that Jeff was the one that sent in his PHR. I guess it was the talk of the office when that fax came in.

Obviously, the idea of requesting an appointment and faxing in your health record using a PHR still has a ways to go. In fact, NoMoreClipboard’s goal is to work with doctor’s offices like these so that the office gets the person’s health record on the forms that the doctor’s are use to getting it on. I think that’s a smart strategy. Not to mention the idea of the patients driving their doctors to use and work with a PHR provider. I think they call that Word of Mouth advertising right?

I’ve been thinking about this for a while when I recently talked with someone from Microsoft’s HealthVault division. I quite frankly asked this gentleman why I should use a PHR. Obviously, if I was a patient with a chronic or complicated illness I could see a compelling use case. However, what’s the use case that will drive and motivate healthy individuals to use a PHR. So far I really haven’t heard a good answer.

Requesting an appointment and not having to fill out that same lengthy cumbersome paperwork is the closest I’ve thought of.

Ensuring Patient Compliance Using Text Messages and a PHR

Posted on October 20, 2010 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

One of the really interesting things that I’ve heard at the Mobile Health Expo has been the use of text messages to assist with patient compliance.

I think this is at least the third time at this conference that I’ve been hearing about the use of text messages in healthcare as a way to remind patients of their need to comply with the doctors instructions.

In one case, NoMoreClipboard is working with a hospital to use medical minutes (basically subsidizing their cell phone plan) for participants in a diabetes program. In this program, users would access the NoMoreClipboard PHR through their cell phone where they can update their blood glucose levels or other information as designed by their hospital.

This is pretty cool, but the interesting part is the way they’re using text messages together with the PHR. For example, if the patient doesn’t check in with their information, then a text message is sent reminding them to do so. Plus, once they enter in their information, they can get proactive messages about how they should deal with various blood sugar levels. For example, if their levels are low it might instruct them to eat or drink something to raise that level (although in a nice medically appropriate way).

I should have written down the exact numbers, but in the above case they found that they saved about $18,500 in treatment costs for a compliant patient vs. the non-compliant patient.

I of course had to ask if this could actually be a problem for the hospital. Sure, it improves healthcare, which is incredibly valuable. However, would this impact the revenue that a hospital was receiving previously to treat patients? Sure, it’s a bit ominous to think this way, but let’s be honest that the hospital revenue is an important factor.

Jeff Donnell from NoMoreClipboard brought up a good point that in many cases these patients were ones who had no health insurance and so the hospital was often not making money from treating these patients, but in fact was having to pay for these patients. So, being able to lower these costs is a huge benefit on top of the clinical benefits.

Of course, this is just one example of the usages of text messages in healthcare. I’m really finding it fascinating. Text messages seem to be one of the most innovative technology I’ve heard discussed and not all the various “Apps” that are out there. Yep, the simple text message is being used in all sorts of creative ways. Plus, text messages tied to a PHR or some other web source is really interesting as well.

Of course, I can’t help but imagine how text messages could be integrated into an EMR. Appointments is one obvious area. Patient compliance is another interesting one. What other areas of an EMR could benefit from the implementation of text messages?

One speaker said that on average text messages are read within 4 minutes. There has to be a way to leverage this attention in healthcare and EMR.