ARcare ratchets up diabetes treatment with text messaging
Can healthcare providers succeed in population health management without buy-in for patients? Not likely, no. There are, however, ways of engaging those patient populations where a little information can go a long way.
Take ARcare, for instance, a private nonprofit corporation serving primary care and dental needs in rural Arkansas. Just don’t let the geography fool you. ARcare is a Blue Button participant and a HIMSS Davies Award winner.
Among the IT-savvy population health initiatives, ARcare increased clinicians’ ability to treat patients with diabetes. And it did so with common and relatively inexpensive technology: SMS texting.
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“We use population health management to improve diabetes and hypertension education with interactive SMS with our patients,” ARcare CIO Greg Wolverton said, adding that ARcare uses the HIMSS Patient Engagement Framework.
Wolverton will discuss ARcare’s challenges and successes in a HIMSS16 session titled “Consumer-Driven Care and the Push Toward Population Health,” on Thursday.
Culled from lessons learned along the way, Wolverton recommends that healthcare organizations moving toward population health management not only recognize the role of messaging tools working in conjunction with electronic health records to coordinate care across various facilities, but also identify agile and scalable efficiencies those technologies can enable.
What’s more, laying the technological foundation for consumer-driven care can give healthcare organizations data to better understand how these approaches impact patients and population alike and, from there, optimize care plans for individuals.
Finally, there’s the financial upside.
“Population health when properly managed can improve patients’ health,” Wolverton said, “and increase operational revenue for providers.”
Wolverton’s session “Consumer-Driven Care and the Push Toward Population Health,” is slated to take place Thursday March 3, 2016 from 11:30-12:30 PST in the Sands Expo Convention Center Palazzo E.
This story is part of our ongoing coverage of the HIMSS16 conference. Follow our live blog for real-time updates, and visit Destination HIMSS16 for a full rundown of our reporting from the show. For a selection of some of the best social media posts of the show, visit our Trending at #HIMSS16 hub.