Connecting patient records and IDs accurately is hugely important when the HIE is the source of truth as a clinical data utility
With the national opioid crisis worsening during the pandemic, LANES participants who are licensed prescribers and pharmacists can be confident of querying the right individual with the right medical record’s prescribed narcotics history through its CURES connectivity.
Not only does connectivity to California’s CURES Prescription Drug Database (PDMP) eliminate an extra step in provider workflow to retrieve important patient information, prescribers can trust that patients are accurately linked and matched through its cloud-based solution.
At its core, high quality patient data and health information exchange depends on high quality, consistent patient matching. Although electronic health record systems have helped improve care overall, health systems still struggle to link patients to the right record on every visit when attempting to match records between hospitals.
Poor and inconsistent patient matching has serious implications on patient safety issues and costs.
Research studies reveal a daunting picture of the human toll affected by mismatched patient records.
- The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative found that matching patients to their healthcare records is an ongoing problem in medical facilities across the nation, with match rates being “far below the desired level for effective data exchange.” In some healthcare facilities, the current patient match rate could be as low as 50 percent.
- A study by Smart Card Alliance estimated that 195,000 deaths occurred due to medical error, with 58 percent associated with wrong-patient errors.
- The ECRI Institute, one of the nation’s leading patient safety organizations, named patient identification among the top 10 patient concerns for healthcare organizations in 2017. Wrong-patient errors is only one casualty of duplicate or mismatched patient data.
The LANES HIE offers state-of-the-art patient matching technology.
To achieve good matching performance, patient matching solutions must be highly tuned to accommodate unique characteristics of the patient population, data sources and data collection methods.
Embedded within the LANES HIE is a Master Patient Index (MPI) technology that incorporates cloud-based referential matching techniques to ensure the right patient is matched to the right patient data. It rapidly identifies overlapping patients, efficiently consolidates applications and proactively finds and prevents duplicate patient records. Many healthcare organizations use MPIs or other electronic databases that hold demographic data on patients receiving healthcare services. Because accurate patient matching is such a systemic issue, LANES incorporated an MPI as a feature enhancement of the platform to ensure participants have the most accurate data.
Connecting the right patient records is hugely important when an HIE is the source of truth as an aggregator of essential patient health information from data silos. And, this becomes critically important when prescribers need access to a patient’s prescription history to dictate prescribing behaviors.
Providers don’t have to sift through a lot of patient data in order to get what they need.
Through the federally mandated API system connectivity, authorized participants can more easily conduct a patient query via LANES to see if the individual has a prescribed narcotics history.
If someone with a common name like John Smith is a patient who is prescribed narcotics, for example, the licensed prescribers or pharmacists can simply log into the LANES HIE to access the CURES PDMP. They can trust that our patient matching technology has taken all of the demographics, filtered through lists of patients and returned the unique, correct John Smith I.D. as part of the query.
Interoperability depends on the successful exchange of health information. LANES strives to make patients’ health information available safely and securely, when and where it is needed for informed care coordination. The power of our underlying MPI technology and accessibility of the CURES database empowers L.A. County providers to work more efficiently to support the public health needs of our local community.
This article was originally published on Los Angeles Network for Enhanced Services (LANES) blog and is republished here with permission.