Patient-centric dermatology services depend on initiatives that can tackle not only skin conditions themselves, but also offer smooth workflows which support patients in their journey through the healthcare system to boost efficacy in treatment outcomes.
The power of healthcare processes to interrelate and provide access to appropriate care on time is just as important as providing the correct diagnosis and treatment to patients. Care coordination then, is fundamental to develop an inclusive approach to supportive interdisciplinary cohorts for effective patient care outcomes.
1. What is the nature and importance of care coordination?
Although there is no absolute consensus over one particular definition of this practice, in general terms care coordination can be defined as “the deliberate organization of patient care activities [...] to facilitate the appropriate delivery of health care services.”1
Proactively assigning resources to the demands that arise as the patient transits through the healthcare system must be a priority for safeguarding the necessary exchanges of treatment information and to tackle any given condition accordingly. However, in this process, it’s also imperative to optimize communication and patient data sharing for all stakeholders to appropriately respond within their field of expertise. In this regard, the creation of an adequate ecosystem that is synchronized, connected and responsive is part of the goal of care coordination.
In other words, if a patient starts their consultation with a GP for an abnormality on their skin, not only the proper care must be provided at this first point of contact, but there must also be a network that supports this doctor to provide an on-time and highly-accessible path to a dermatologist referral. Subsequent steps will rely on the effectiveness of accurate communication and ease of patient data flow to serve the case through clinical analysis, surgical procedures, and dermatopathology diagnosis confirmation. A whole orchestrated system that’s functional around the needs of patients and which makes best use of the available resources within the medical network.
2. How can DermEngine contribute to an effective care coordination approach?
In order for healthcare ecosystems to become coordinated, patient handling systems need to be equipped with the technology that can create an accessible, efficient and quality hub that integrates all stakeholders. Intelligent dermatology software, such as DermEngine, are the result of the genuine need for the support of a common network that can centralize health professionals of various disciplines simultaneously. Being able to establish concrete and effective communication among each one of the links in the care-chain process is of utmost importance for delivering powerful medical outcomes.
DermEngine is built around a patient-centric approach able to document patient cases with easy and safe access to patient history by medical professionals within the network. Similarly, the interoperable nature of DermEngine allows it to complement its advanced features with electronic medical records (EMR) software already in use. In this sense DermEngine offers a full spectrum of support by allowing to:
- Record patient history
- Acquire overview and dermatoscopic images
- Schedule dermatology consultations
- Pathological identification
- Schedule follow-up treatments
- Access surgical/oncological expertise by referral to specialists
- Define the overall treatment strategy
DermEngine’s ability to operate every step of the healthcare cycle from a single platform, involving dermatologists, surgeons, pathologists and even patients reflects the power of centrality and connectivity. A doctor who follows up with a patient through direct messaging, or a pathology lab report that links its results to a patient’s history through a QR code are just examples of the power to streamlining workflows for coordinated care.
The complexity of care procedures combined with the increasing number of patient cases is making efficiency a must in daily practices. To this respect, the advantage that technology can bring is most influential in terms of care coordination, that is, in how to provide a common platform from which patients and healthcare specialists can proactively interact. A dermatology hub centre system such as DermEngine is an example of the future of streamlined care. The increasing challenges across various fields can and will only be tackled with the careful, collaborative and coordinated input of everyone involved in the process.
-The MetaOptima Team
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