Major health associations use EHRs to target top causes of death

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Three major health organizations -- the American Cancer Society, the American Diabetes Association, and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association -- have launched a new program to improve outpatient care by increasing physician access to electronic health record (EHR) data. Oversight and data management is being provided by the Duke Clinical Research Institute.

The program, called the Guideline Advantage Quality Improvement Program, is targeting four of the 10 leading causes of death nationwide -- heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes -- as determined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The program will use EHR data to provide documentation and establish a database of clinical information that will be used to support future research on the conditions. The program is modeled after the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Get With The Guidelines program that was first launched in 2009.

The specialties eligible to participate are: obstetrics/gynecology, cardiology, family medicine, geriatric medicine, osteopathic medicine, oncology, internal medicine, neurology, and endocrinology.

With the program, supported by Medtronic, participants will continue to use their existing EHR platforms. Additional tools and resources -- such as webinars and continuing medical education programs -- will be used to help develop best practices for quality improvement.

Richard Wender, the guideline program liaison and past president of the American Cancer Society, said that the program will be effective because it will help healthcare providers gauge their performance based on benchmark data, reports Healthcare IT News.

One of the first systems to participate in the Guideline Advantage is the Ochsner Health System, which will be using benchmarks and monitoring clinical outcomes across 33 clinics and outpatient services throughout Louisiana.

For more details:
- see the Healthcare IT News article
- read TMCnet article
- visit the Guideline Advantage website
- view a webinar on Guideline Advantage

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