Mostashari Makes IT Personal on the Road to Predictive Analytics and Accountable Care

Date: 08.02.2013 | Zach Urbina">Zach Urbina

In his opening remarks at the 2nd National Forum on Data and Analytics in Washington DC, National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari recalled the first eHI meeting, noting that at that time there was a disconnect between his motivations as a public health specialist and many of the conversations he had that were very technology focused.

Mostashari noted that he was excited that conversations were moving beyond talking about the why of the benefits of technology, to truly impact individual healthcare on a growing scale.

Mostashari emphasized that physicians should have the information at their fingertips to “know” their patient’s information; “history, their medications, their allergies information and what we should expect for “our mom”” should be the standard when building the systems to transform the healthcare IT arena.

He observed that patient information was no longer “dead,” but now digitized and that providers were well on their way to meeting that challenge. Providers’ electronic health records (EHR) adoption had risen from 9% of hospitals in 2009, at a point in time when the business case adoption was not there to where now 90% of hospital providers in the country have registered for the EHR incentive program, striving to meet the various stages of meaningful use, and approaching a period where it’s not going to be good enough to simply count beds or count MRIs.

‘You’re going to need to know your patients,” he commented.

Mostashari continued with a personal theme, “My next expectation is for doctors to ‘do what’s right for my mom’s healthcare” referencing his aha moment in HIT when demonstrating to a hard working physician in Harlem that systems and technology enable ordinary people to do extraordinary things, when they are no longer remembering things from “the 6 minute visit.”

He cited data that clinical decision support through CPOE went from 27% to 72% of hospitals in only 2 years.

“I want doctors to care for my mom when she doesn’t walk into the doctors office, not just when she does,” said Mostashari and that reaching out to patients who didn’t show up is part of caring for your patient population.

Mostashari also lauded Kaiser’s ten-year survival rate for congestive heart failure at 80% compared to the rest of the country at 20%.

Farzad went on to outline that the data that matters most, often comes from the patient interaction, from listening to the patient and that this encounter needs to be shared through provider collaboration and shared care plans.

“And wouldn’t it be great if they could anticipate in a similar way to when you’re typing in a Google search?”

‘What’s neat about predictions is that they eventually resolve themselves to a binary conclusion, they either come true or they don’t,” said Mostashari, continuing with the point that, “This process can improve and learn and that is the promise of predictive analytics.”

He asked conference attendees to move from data to insight and from insight to benefit, echoing some of the key themes of value-based healthcare goals.

In a jovial moment, received with light laughter from the audience, Mostashari offered a few words of quick advice: “data, leverage the hell out of Meaningful Use Stage 2.”

On a more serious note, Mostashari also keenly warned against the assumption that more data will solve the problem and that polishing the data from standardized data sets is truly the next step to building value.

Before rounding off his presentation, Mostashari cautioned that no short cuts should be taken around data privacy and security in developing solutions. He advised that product development should be focused on provider needs and patient solutions that deal 100% with ongoing, cost-driving problems such as readmissions or helping providers meet quality measures.  Both are seen as areas that will help providers with their reimbursement in the coming years of health IT implementation and utilization.

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