Columbus, OH – 6/9/2021.
During a recent conversation, a physician colleague shared anecdotes about his highly team-based, collaborative training years ago, and his alarm at entering practice to find that expectation largely unmet. Interoperability, as a theme of effective digital data transmission leading to better care, has been getting a lot of attention. And appropriately so. The notion, however, needs to equally encompass interoperability among providers.
The failings of the primary care system can’t be attributed to only one cause or group. And no sooner could they be remedied by a unilateral solution. An informal survey would reveal concerns among physicians, nurses, hospital and practice administrators, and pharmacists about their professions. Each has reason to worry about factors related to reimbursement and costs, patient access, consolidation in the marketplace, and broad-scale shifts in practice trends.
The unifying bond among these individual groups is, of course, patient relationships. Consumers of healthcare interact with and rely on all of the above, and many more besides. A theorized upside of health networks, whether arranged according to hospital affiliation or under a payer’s approved roster, is that care may be more streamlined, less fragmented.
Practically, though, there’s very little communication that goes on about a person’s ongoing care in a high-level way. Physicians and other specialized providers may consult with each other about specific, acute needs. Pharmacists and physicians may correspond to resolve immediate needs relative to medication recommendations.
In between visits to your doctor or pharmacist, the “no news is good news” mindset prevails. For many people, who only need healthcare episodically, this may be sufficient. For anyone contending with, or in proximity of, a chronic condition, there is value in more consistent observation. And, arguably, for all of us, having a more integrated means through which to communicate with our providers, and for our providers to function as a team, would be beneficial.
Establishing bidirectional, transdisciplinary conduits for information-sharing and consultation would, it’s easy enough to envision, help alleviate some of the burdens on the various healthcare professions. Delivery of care is highly stratified, and an effective team encompasses all levels of training and expertise. Fully authorizing each provider to the highest level of their scope of practice would coax essential decision-making upstream, while allocating administration and certain elements of execution more equitably
No news isn’t good news, if it means that providers of all types are so overrun with the details of their day-to-day job duties that they can’t tend to the underlying motivations that led them to the healing arts in the first place. Health in Motion Network promotes a model of care that establishes digital as well as professional interoperability as paramount.
Health in Motion Network delivers a consumer-centric, digitally enhanced healthcare ecosystem, enabling centralized and personalized, pharmacist-driven care management, empowering consumer choice and optimizing clinical outcomes.