Health Records and Information Access
Medical records have historically been tightly held by health systems and providers. How do we envision patients’ healthcare experiences changing with shifts in data interoperability and availability? And how are we contributing to that cultural change?
An empowered patient is a healthier patient. When we set out to redefine pharmacy care, it was on the premise that patients who have comprehensive access to their own information, through trusted pharmacy providers, would be more engaged in the choices that optimize their wellbeing. Of course, we’re not the first ones to imagine that a democratized healthcare experience might benefit patients’ wellbeing, as well as lower costs, and help overly stratified and siloed provider workflows. In fact, the federal Cures Act, through the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Technology, is among efforts to prioritize and implement interoperability and patient-driven information access. Including enabling patients to house and access that information through digital devices like smartphones.
Where our efforts have differentiated is in our focus on the pharmacist as a key player in care management, and in building a digital platform that delivers operational efficiency. Our plan all along has been to offer a technology solution that seamlessly complements the way patients already interact with their pharmacists, drawing from patients’ broader personalized healthcare context, for mutually satisfying outcomes.
And, as we’ve heard from pharmacists using our Parawell system, our plan is working. A key component of Parawell is centralized storage of patients’ health information. This includes their medical records, lab results, immunization histories, and other wellness data integrated from various devices. Pharmacists have long been mostly disenfranchised from the electronic health records systems that have grown ubiquitous in physicians’ offices. When pharmacists receive prescription orders, they may be expected to fill those without any sense of the background of who the person is and what they’re trying to achieve. The benefit of an established patient-pharmacist relationship is that pharmacists are able to act as healthcare providers. With an asset like Parawell, their capacity to serve patients’ personal needs is all the more enhanced. Conversations are more detailed. Knowledge supports decision-making. Disease state management becomes collaborative. Results follow.
Further, this sort of bidirectional, professional communication can strengthen inter-provider relationships. Physician-directed care has long been mostly separate from what goes on in a pharmacy. Orders are sent, and subsequently filled. Perhaps there might be a quick telephone consultation to confirm a detail. Now, on the other hand, one can complement the other. Acknowledging pharmacists as healthcare providers, alongside their medical and nursing colleagues, contributes to the continuity of care we have all long sought as an outcome of excellent healthcare.
It starts with the quality of the health information. Parawell, powered by Health in Motion Network, syncs with patients’ electronic health records and other verified sources, so information is accurate and personalized. This is a fully agnostic system, insofar that we are sourcing data for patient and provider use. We are not putting up more digital fences around individuals’ own information. The system is protected by best-in-class securities, but it is meant to be accessible, portable, and useful, above all else. We are not, on our own, a new entry into the electronic health record market. What we are doing, however, is thoughtfully and comprehensively aggregating information to facilitate connection, communication, and action.
Respecting patients’ autonomy as influencers of their own wellness, and establishing convenient pathways to connect with trusted providers. That’s Parawell.