Workflow challenge for post-acute & long term care clinicians

My commitment to curate and push substantive and meaningful articles relating to PALTC to anyone interested in this health care market is underway. I enjoy the part of the work that involves scanning my lists of source materials looking for candidate posts, but the challenge really begins when I try to assimilate the information, pick the most compelling or interesting articles, and generate a final product - call it the "workflow." I find this interesting because that is exactly the problem that we at Afoundria are working hard to solve for our PALTC charting customers - workflow.

ChartPath was designed and built to make it easier for doctors and nurses providing care to patients in a wide variety of settings outside of acute care facilities to create quality records of their patients’ care. (See previous blog post on The 5 C’s of Charting). Most of the thousands of charts produced by ChartPath customers each week are generated in what I term “facility-based” post acute care. This includes nursing homes (skilled and long-term) as well as assisted living and independent living facilities. Few of these facilities provide software that meets the needs of the providers ChartPath serves, rather their focus is on their own documentation.

Thus, the workflow problem. The source information for a high-quality chart comes from many disparate systems and processes. Documents of prior care including discharge summaries and progress notes may be available in electronic or paper form. Current and previous medication administration records (MAR) must be reviewed and vetted. Notes of care generated by facility staff should be reviewed and compiled. Other individuals on the care team including therapists, specialist consultants, dietary and nutrition staff, nurses and nurse aides can provide valuable input into care planning and coordination. Oh, and lest we forget, the patients themselves are both a vital source of information and the target of care.

Reviewing, vetting, curating and publishing a patient chart is much more complex than my challenge of pushing out news articles of interest - not to mention our users create hundreds of charts per week. But my efforts to collect, assess, assimilate and publish succinct and informative summaries of important information directly parallel their challenge and remind me of our purpose. My pledge to you is that each week as I work on this editorial post I will find something in our ChartPath product, big or small, that needs to be “tweaked” to make our customers’ work easier and more satisfying.

To our customers, the providers of PALTC - thank you for all you do.

Dr. Buddy Owen