Using EMRs to Manage Patient Populations

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Chronic Disease Management is sometimes used as a way to neatly package a pool of services for a specific group of patients. This can result in a tunnel vision type approach to treatment that can be effective when automating a set of processes; however, patients with chronic disease tend to be older, often suffer from co-morbid disease, and require the support of a wider range of healthcare providers including physicians and nurses. Developing strategies to improve the management of this population of patients is challenging and requires a wide range of approaches including clinical process redesign, development of clinical practice guidelines, ancillary support services, shared care teams, etc.


In an optimized EMR practice, what can physicians hope to accomplish? Here are some of the benefits:


Unprecedented access to individual patient data.


The ability to identify individuals amongst a population that may be suffering from one or more undiagnosed chronic diseases.


Use of registry and recall data and functions to improve clinical outcomes.


Use of EMRs to aggregate data for practice level population health improvement.

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