Driving Value-based Care and Quality with Healthcare Dashboards
As the world focuses more on healthcare ecosystems in the wake of the pandemic, a significant data-centric transition is yet to happen in the industry. Change is the only constant that we always experience in a complex industry like healthcare. An aging population, new disease patterns, ever-increasing knowledge, evolving technology, and the regulatory landscape define the modus operandi for healthcare operations.
Consumer expectations rapidly change in the digital and physical interconnection in the digital era. In the traditional care model, a patient visits a clinic; spends 20-30 mins as per the appointment. Healthcare professionals create triage, diagnose as per the symptoms, and define the care plan. When patients did not have information from the internet, this modus operandi worked. Now the expectation is like this:
Before the patient visits for the appointment, technology solutions enable healthcare professionals to triage the situation and offer personalized messages as per physical illness. Patients to have a broad knowledge of the care options that can improve their physical wellbeing.
The shift in patient expectations paved the path for transition to value-based care, and this is not new after the pandemic. Over 25% of the US healthcare spending is considered a waste with unnecessary medical tests and treatments. How do we achieve utilize these resources when healthcare needs always emerge? Providing care transparency and information by analyzing the vast data piles in healthcare seems to be the right solution.
Value-based Healthcare with Patient-centric Care
The priorities of Healthcare CFOs for 2022 changed to improving patient experience, enhancing patient confidence in the healthcare system, and reducing burnout for healthcare professionals. These priorities are the impetus for adopting the technology trends like big data analytics, AI (Artificial Intelligence), and remote patient monitoring. How does value-based healthcare converge with patient-centric care amidst all this?
Valued-based healthcare – The traditional healthcare models focused on diagnosis and treatment, resulting in many iterations between illness and care planning. Often the readmission rates were high, and the patient didn’t have information about the care options and planning. With the change in the information landscape and mounting healthcare costs, everyone in the industry now prefers quality over quantity. Patient satisfaction, treatment quality, care effectiveness, health outcomes, and population health management are the various aspects of care management that define the quality of care.
Patient-centric care – Patient-centric care involves, informs, and guides the individual in their entire care management process. How do you achieve it? It revolves around a few principles:
- Perspectives and preferences to patients’ needs and values
- Information management and continuing healthcare education
- Care management continuity and transition
- Involving technology for ease of care access
- Co-ordination between health professionals, support providers, and patient groups
Value-based healthcare and patient-centric care aim to improve patient engagement, experience, and confidence in the healthcare ecosystem. What is the role of healthcare dashboards in improving care quality?
Healthcare ecosystems have substantial amounts of quality-related data that lack visibility. Healthcare dashboards improve transparency and redirect the stakeholders’ attention to data-driven healthcare quality management. The essential quality metrics in such healthcare dashboards include:
- Metrics about the clinicians and the facilities structure like the average patient-physician ratio
- Quality of the care processes like average length of stay and CT/procedures performed in similar patient groups
- In-house/hospital-acquired infections, readmissions, and patient satisfaction scores to defining the care experience
Let me walk you through more details about the healthcare dashboards in the new normal.
Healthcare Dashboards – The New Approach for Quality Care
Healthcare quality management dashboards have a lot of critical metrics and other KPIs, including:
- Clinical events – Infections, procedures, errors in medication
- Care outcomes – Readmission rates, in-house acquired admissions, length of stay
- Care access – ER Wait times, Average appointment times
- Patient Experience – Satisfaction scores, care options and effectiveness, and interactions
Physician/Practitioner Dashboards – EMRs now have a wide variety of data about patients, treatment plans, and underlying conditions. If leveraged by historical data about different treatment options, an effective care plan provides insights to manage the underlying conditions better. Pain management often considered a low priority, can be improved with healthcare dashboards. Suppose the quality improvement teams assess the data and create dashboards about the efficacy of pain management in the patient population. In that case, the team can make informed decisions and improve pain management. The other standard metrics like patient loads per physician, average appointment time, public health data, and nursing consensus can help physicians plan their care and time. The dashboards may include many others according to the specialty and practice customized to specific needs.
Patient Engagement Dashboards – Patients now prefer to make informed decisions, and they need ease to access care options. Patient satisfaction scores now seem to be common in healthcare dashboards. But there is more story to it; the average inpatient length of stay, the turnaround time for lab processes, average wait times (appointment and ER), information access, comparative information about the clinical outcomes, and a few more give insight into the current healthcare ecosystem. Hospital administrators can have more wisdom to plan their future actions and improve the patient’s experience.
Quality Care Dashboards – Readmission rates indicate the quality of care provided at the healthcare facilities. Also, hospitals can experience a decline in revenue and patient experience scores. The optimal length of stay is vital for the financial health of patients and hospitals. Are these just enough? Safety of care, another essential dashboard, indicates the metrics about medical incidents, side-efforts of procedures, and any errors leading to adverse events. Hospital-acquired infections increase stay length, and historical data analysis can help reduce such conditions. The effectiveness of care outcomes related to the best care guidelines and the results associated with such care ensures that the practitioners follow the best practices.
Financial Dashboards – How do financial dashboards impact care quality? Quality is always associated with costs; optimal costs and quality always provide the best outcomes. Average costs per procedure, cost of care, specialty-wise spending vs. revenue, patient-to-physician/nurse ratio, medical devices costs, supply chain, surgical equipment costs, etc., are a few among many financial metrics that can improve the length of stay, care quality, and ER treatment options.
A few Technology Solutions for Effective Healthcare Dashboards
Unlike other industries, data and metrics constantly change in healthcare. So, users need to enhance the dashboards regularly and update the visualizations. Do you need to invest in new dashboards? Not necessarily, you can use out-of-box solutions like InsightBox to reduce your efforts by 50%.
For reliable, high-value healthcare dashboards, you need to include the following:
- Create a single source of truth with standard meta information and data definitions.
- Unified look for all the reports in the healthcare dashboards
- Secured access for users to view relevant data and dashboards
- Real-time insights to address the dynamic challenges in minimal time
- Improve the UX so that the users can visualize the story behind the data points
Do you need help improving your healthcare dashboards? Our experts can improve your time to value and RoI. Contact us for more information.
Khalil Sheikh is the Executive Vice President of Solutions and strategy at Saxon. Under his leadership, Saxon is building ROI driven Data Science AI/ML and recommendation engines for its fortune 1000 customers. Khalil has extensive experience in the Software & IT services industry and in turning around businesses through actionable business intelligence leveraging AI. With more than 28 years of experience across the industry verticals, he has led several successful Data Science & digital transformation journeys for ISV’s and enterprises. He led CTO/CIO forums in the valley and is known for fostering creativity, collaboration, and diversity.