Electronic Health Record: A Focus On Patient Benefits

Contributed by:

Eugene Lee, Senior VP of Digital Products, PDR Network

NOTE: The content below contains the first few paragraphs of the printed article and the titles of the sidebars and boxes, if applicable.

When we think of the positive impact of electronic health record (EHR) adoption, we often focus on the increased efficiency of the medical practice or additional convenience for healthcare providers (HCPs). We do not often associate those benefits with our most important target: the patient. Current estimates state that nearly 80% of HCPs have adopted some form of EHR system. While these systems can vary greatly, they all have the potential to positively impact the patients visiting those practices.

EHRs have become the center of the HCP’s workflow, opening a new channel for communicating and receiving information throughout their day. Bio/pharmaceutical companies have already recognized the importance of reaching providers through these systems and have included EHR workflow-centric communications as part of their brand marketing strategies.

In addition to providers, EHRs also offer a direct channel to the patients in their office. At the critical moment when the HCP is consulting with the patient and prescribing their treatment, information can be pushed through the EHR that supports patient safety, adherence, and positive health outcomes.

Enhancing Patient Safety

Tools within workflow empower HCPs to provide better patient care. By making critical drug information available directly at the point of care, HCPs can confidently prescribe medications without referring to external sources to ensure patient safety. PDR BRIEF, for example, activates when a medication is selected, surfacing pertinent medication information on screen and supporting the act of prescribing, without being a barrier to the provider’s task at hand.

When was the last label update? Are there any warnings or other critical things that I need to know before prescribing this medication? These concerns are addressed with a quick glance and, if needed, additional detail can be accessed with a click to ensure that the medication selected is being prescribed safely and appropriately for that patient.

Adherence through Education

When the medication is selected, the EHR can be used to share patient support information while they are still in the provider’s office. Providers can offer their patient tailored medication information and address concerns about their therapy on the spot. This discussion can support the start of therapy and the patient’s adherence to it before they have even gone to the pharmacy to pick it up.

The idea of making brand information available to patients in the office is not a new one. However, by making it digital and on demand for the provider, brands are able to overcome the challenges of previously having sales representatives drop off hard copies that are often misplaced or become outdated before ever being given to the patient.

The EHR’s patient portal also allows information to be sent electronically to continue supporting education and adherence after the patient has left the office.

PDR+ for Patients allows brands to offer patient-focused information to providers that they can send through the portal to be accessed and reviewed by the patient after the visit.

Addressing Public Health in the Future

EHRs have changed the way that healthcare is provided from both the perspective of the provider and the patient. These digital systems have added efficiency to the process while offering unique digital tools to help provider and patient reach the goal of better health outcomes. What we have seen, however, is only the beginning. PDR Network, like many companies, is continuing to develop innovations that support patient care — both on the provider-patient level and on the larger public health level. These tools will help patients take an even more active role in their health and allow providers to identify and address patient challenges before they become larger health issues.

PDR Network LLC is the leading distributor of FDA-approved drug labeling, safety and REMS information, as well as medication adherence and product support programs, through the Physicians’ Desk Reference® suite of digital and print services. PDR Network’s innovative products deliver industry-leading content to prescribers and patients across channels, including via its growing “PDR Certified” EHR vendor network.

For more information, visit PDRNetwork.com.

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