Leverage insights from your EMR data to enhance patient care

Contributed by Simon Ling, Program Director, Insights4Care

In 2019, we launched the Insights4Care (i4C) program to help clinicians tap into the valuable data in their EMRs for improved patient health outcomes. By pairing analytical tools and coaching support, the i4C program offers an important step forward for clinicians and the health system in data quality improvement, population health management and optimizing the value of EMRs and integrated digital health services.

Our journey to this point began several years ago. While OntarioMD has helped more than 18,000  Ontario clinicians adopt and use EMRs, we saw an untapped opportunity to bring patient data in the EMR to life using widely adopted health indicators. With funding support from the Ministry of Health, OntarioMD began a proof of concept in 2015 to demonstrate the technical feasibility and clinical value of an EMR dashboard that gives clinicians real time, at-a-glance visual displays of their patient population’s health data. We partnered with organizations such as Health Quality Ontario, the Association of Family Health Teams of Ontario and the Canadian Institute for Health Information to identify 30 indicators to include in the proof of concept, and worked with EMR vendors TELUS Health and OSCAR EMR to implement the i4C Dashboard and indicators.

Fast forward to March 2019. After three years of trial use and evaluation by 500 clinicians across Ontario, our proof of concept successfully concluded with some exciting results:  

  1. The i4C Dashboard enabled quality improvement – 87% of indicators showed improvements after only 90 days of clinician use;
  2. While physicians were the primary users of the Dashboard, feedback showed that other clinicians and staff took advantage of the Dashboard’s potential to drive quality improvement and more responsive patient care within the practice; and
  3. Participants who took advantage of the opportunity to combine Dashboard use with OntarioMD-led change management support experienced greater data improvements than those who did not receive support.

The proof of concept confirmed the technical feasibility and clinical value of OntarioMD’s i4C Dashboard in primary care, and clearly demonstrated the impact hands-on support from OntarioMD staff can have on adoption and use of the technology, and quality improvement in the practice.

As we start 2020, we’re excited by the impact the i4C Dashboard and i4C Advisory Service can have on the health care system. We’re focused on expanding the program across Ontario by giving more clinicians access to the Dashboard, advice and support. We’re engaging with more vendors with certified EMRs to incorporate the i4C Dashboard, and increasing the number of health indicators available in the Dashboard.  

2020 promises to be another important year of health system transformation in Ontario, as Ontario Health Teams (OHTs) continue to take shape and digital health and data play a growing role in a model that places the patient at the centre of their care and integrates patient information at the point of care. OntarioMD’s i4C program is uniquely positioned to support this change by helping to make EMRs and digital health tools more user-friendly, improving the quality of patient data, translating health system priorities into actionable i4C Dashboard indicators, and giving OHTs and other practitioners the means to track and report on their performance improvements.

We’d love to talk to you more about how the i4C program will benefit your patients, and how you can bring the i4C Dashboard and i4C Advisory Service into your practice. Connect with us at support@ontariomd.com or 1-866-744-8668.

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