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MGMA 2022: 7 Levels of digital care


The move to digital care is a process.

MGMA 2022: 7 Levels of digital care

The move to digital care has been greatly accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, but rapid development in the space should not be seen as a replacement for the processes and trainings that define a proper digital strategy for practices.

Monica Bolbjerg, MD, CEO and founder of Qure4u discussed the steps practices should take in pursuing their digital care future in a session titled “Climbing the seven levels of digital care” as part of the Medical Group Management Association’s Medical Practice Excellence Leaders Conference in Boston.

Bolbjerg broke down the major health care industry pain points into two groups: Practice inefficiencies and data optimization.

Practice inefficiencies she defined as issues like: constant staff shortages, too many patient calls for the staff to manage, slow patient flow, and low or lagging collections. Data optimizations she defined as: needing actionable data, compliance data, value-based and risk contracts, as well as clinical decision support.

Both can be solved through patient engagement and moving to digital care.

According to Bolbjerg, the first four levels of digital care consist of workflow automation that saves staff time, and the final three involve remote care outcomes and artificial intelligence (AI) care.

The seven levels are:

  1. Patient portals and appointment reminders
  2. Telehealth, digital check-ins, collections
  3. Online scheduling, digital screeners, drive-up
  4. Digital intake, consent on-the-fly, wait times, newsfeed.
  5. Home-monitoring devices, remote patient monitoring, procedure prep/care plans, usage analytics
  6. At-home care monitoring, AI flagging high-risk patients, care plan compliance monitoring
  7. Clinical decision support, patient reported outcomes, integrated analytics for population health

For those interested in starting their journey to digital care, or who are seeking to move up from their current level, Bolbjerg recommends setting realistic goals. This involves determining where your practice is today, setting a goal and a realistic timeline, and focusing on one step at a time.

She also recommends finding the right technology partner by identifying a platform that covers all the needed tools, field-to-field integration with your practice’s EHR, and a single-sign-on for staff and providers.

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