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National Health IT Week: How 8 Organizations Are Using Health IT to Improve Patient Outcomes

Today marks the start of National Health IT Week in the US, and this year’s theme is Supporting Healthy Communities. At Collective Medical, we help connect points of care across the nation—including hospitals, clinics, behavioral health, substance use disorder providers, primary care, health plans, skilled nursing facilities, and more—to support collaborative healthcare in communities. This kind of support can only happen when health plans and providers work together for the good of every patient.

As part of National Health IT Week, we’re celebrating innovators who have come together to build healthy communities and, through their efforts, improved outcomes for their patients. Here are eight success stories of how physicians, clinicians, and other care providers are supporting and improving the lives of patients.

CHI St. Anthony Hospital, a critical access hospital in rural Oregon, realized that 50 percent or more of the patients they were seeing in the emergency department (ED) were better suited for a lower acuity setting. Collective Medical’s platform helped staff identify why ED utilization rates were so high, determine the reasons for their all-cause readmissions rate, and collaborate with other hospitals and clinics. Within a year and a half, CHI St. Anthony was able to cut unnecessary ED visits, readmissions rates, and the number of prepack prescriptions coming out of the ED.

Stepworks, a substance use disorder (SUD) treatment and recovery center with five locations across Kentucky, started using Collective’s real-time notification to learn when one of its patients has registered in the local EDs. Having this real-time knowledge allows Stepworks staff to intervene and get that patient back into needed treatment.

Mid-Valley Behavioral Care Network manages the mental health and SUD benefits for Oregon Health Plan members in Marion and Polk Counties. The organization turned to Collective to help coordinate patient care and schedule timely follow-up appointments for their patients who were presenting at the ED with behavioral health crises. Coordinating with the ED, Mid-Valley Behavioral Care Network increased its seven-day follow-up rate to nearly 76 percent, significantly higher than the 30-day national average of only 18 percent.

Lisa Parks, Quality Improvement Coordinator at Mid-Valley Behavioral Care Network explains in a Healthcare IT News article, “Now that we know who and where these patients are, we have the ability to reach out and connect them with therapists or psychiatrists to prevent future readmissions.” 

The Portland Clinic is a multi-speciality medical group with six locations and over 100 physicians and clinicians serving the Portland metropolitan area. Insufficient patient information when patients were visiting the ED was affecting treatment at both the ED and in follow-up care.

Using Collective’s platform, The Portland Clinic has been able to identify high-risk patients, connect with them, and set up timely follow-up appointments. This community collaboration has led to a 13 percent decrease in ED visits by a pilot group within one year. 

Aspire Health Alliance in Massachusetts partners with various healthcare providers throughout the state. It also participates in MassHealth, the state’s Medicaid plan, which prioritizes patient outcomes while reducing costs. For behavioral health patients, engaging with them in the emergency department was one of the best ways to reach patients and get them the care they needed.

Aspire looked to Collective’s platform to notify case managers of patient activity—allowing them to track down and connect with hard-to-reach patients. Aspire has found that engaging with members while they’re in the hospital has led to a 50 percent opt-in engagement rate.

Marquis Companies, a skilled nursing provider, made it a priority to improve readmissions rates. In 2018, Marquis started using Collective’s platform in some of its Oregon facilities. According to a Skilled Nursing News article, Anthony Laflen, Director of Data Analytics said, “Nursing providers, when they look at data, can only see what happens in their four walls. With Collective, that view expands to include any facility on the network.” 

That data matters—in just six months, Marquis was able to cut hospital readmission by 60 percent.

Northwest Physicians Network, an independent physician association in Tacoma, Washington, realized that many of the patients utilizing emergency medical services (EMS) at high rates were better suited for different non-emergency care.

Using Collective’s platform as the backbone, Northwest Physicians Network developed a Mobile Community Intervention Response Team for behavioral health patients. These vulnerable patients are identified when they call 911 and are immediately connected to a behavioral health provider that can help them. The collaboration with EMS, community providers, and Northwest Physician Network has led to: 

  • 44% drop in 911 calls
  • 47% reduction in EMS transport
  • 36% reduction in ED visits
  • 42% reduction in hospital admissions
  • 31% decrease in observation stays

Consulate Health Care is one of the nation’s largest skilled nursing providers, with more than 140 facilities across 12 states. Yet, some locations were still using fax machines to share data with other providers. To improve communication, Consulate turned to Collective’s real-time technology, which helped providers across points of care operate from the same care plan and avoid preventable admissions and readmissions.

Brittany Eastman
Content Marketing Specialist