We focus on understanding how incentives work, not merely to move consumers into wellness programs.
for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), believes the concept of consumer-mediated health information exchange will be one of the most significant aspects of health care delivery transformation in the country. Implementing view, download,
and transmit (VDT) functionality is at the core of a consumer-centric approach to health care delivery. CCA agrees with Mostashari’s position. This will represent a shift from personal health records tethered to a particular provider or
health plan’s data source to personally controlled health records. This is not entirely new, since we have seen how the Blue Button feature, which allows Veteran’s Administration patients to download their data, has expanded to the private sector. An empowered, engaged consumer will not just download his or her data but put it to good use by taking action to improve his or health status. But, what kind of action can consumers take now that they have their data? Having access to accurate health information and continued on page 53
mHealth: The Apps Revolution Is Transforming Consumer Engagement and Behavior Change If health consumerism is the epitome of individuals taking control of their lives by considering their personal needs and preferences, the app revolution is — or more accurately, could be — its centerpiece. The third key area for population health is mHealth. mHealth is growing rapidly, providing consumers with the opportunity to choose and customize apps to serve their specific health needs. New apps hit the market daily. There are tens of thousands of health apps now available that include: • fitness, activity, and clinical trackers • wellness, prevention, and chronic disease management tools • direct lines of communications with providers • education and decision support • health insurance information Apps have the potential to impact and improve many areas of consumer health and the health care system, including the providerpatient relationship. Apps provide consumers with a system that is always on and ready to be accessed, as they want or need it, not just when scheduled by their provider or other health care company.
Apps enable real-time information exchange and support between the consumer and many points of the health care system, potentially improving the health system’s understanding of the effect that a consumer’s life has on his or her health, outside of the clinic’s or hospital’s four walls. This knowledge will lead to a health care system with more efficiency, engagement, and satisfaction. Although information about diseases and even preventive behaviors abound, actionable information is not as readily available. The coming years will see the advent of apps that not only track one’s data, but provide insights into the data and give the consumer actionable information in real time. Patients and consumers in general also need access to evidencebased, regulated information that will facilitate smart interactions with their health care providers. But information without context and support could be harmful. There is a need for tools that will efficiently support patient engagement by guiding patients through the intricacies of their care, www.TheIHCC.com I HealthCare Consumerism Solutions™ I Annual Outlook 2013
Institute for HealthCare Consumerism annual outlook issue