30 Second Trick for Learning and Memory

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robyn-scott/the-30-second-habit-that-_b_4808632.html

Something I learned while taking that Coursera course on Learning how to Learn. Turns out it is never too late to learn something new. Here’s an idea that you can LEARN IN 30 seconds, and could have lasting repercussions:

Summarize your last meeting, or discussion, or class, or event that you want to remember, in 30 seconds. Maybe even an entire book. The act of having to prioritize, to summarize, to choose what is important, to actively recall — this engages the frontal cortex just enough to help re-inforce memories. It is indeed a “mind-sprint” equivalent of an 100-yard dash.

This is not only backed by science (see that Coursera course!) but feels right. I currently use a little black book to write down minutes of my meetings. However, I DID NOT take the extra 30 seconds to summarize. I think I will begin doing this.

CMIO’s take? Just like one should never be “too sick to go to the doctor,” one is never too old to learn something new. Thirty seconds is all it takes. Do you do this? Let me know!

 

Instagram is a diagnostic portal for depression (NYTimes)

From the colors and faces in their photos to the enhancements they make before posting them, Instagram users with a history of depression seem to present the world differently from their peers, according to the study, published this week in the journal EPJ Data Science.

I love work like this; the growing links between disparate databases that lead to innovative ideas, weird conjunctions (Conjunction Junction, anyone?). I could imagine asking our patients to grant us access to their twitter handles, their instagram posts for purposes of diagnosis, follow-up. These are fascinating, uncharted waters.

I look forward to more cool mash-ups like this in the future.

Patient Engagement HIT article on patient access to Medical Records

File sharing and transfer vector concept
From Patient Engagement HIT

Thanks for a great write up from Patient Engagement HIT, on the important topic of the Pros and Cons of Digital Patient Health IT access. It is hard work, an uphill climb, a Sisyphean task for those who promote cultural change in physicians, clinics and hospitals, but worth it in the end.

“Do you want patients to call us with terminology questions? Will they be offended when we call them obese? Or if we say they’re smoking or they smelled like smoke? This is going to be terrible,’” Lin recalled his colleagues saying.

https://patientengagementhit.com/news/4-pros-and-cons-of-digital-patient-health-data-access

The CMIO role will evolve as health systems’ needs (HealthcareDIVE)

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Image courtesy of HealthcareDIVE

Thanks to Meg Bryant from HealthcareDIVE for a nice article about the evolving role of the CMIO. My quote:

“If implementing an EHR was constructing the basement of the house, we now have demands on building the first, second and third floors,” he says. “How do we innovate to reduce costs, increase quality and reduce physician burnout all at the same time?”

http://www.healthcaredive.com/news/the-cmio-role-will-evolve-as-health-systems-needs-change/439941/

Wall Street Journal: How to get patients to take more control of their medical decisions (news)

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Courtesy of Wall Street Journal original article

At UCHealth, based in Aurora, Colo., as soon as a doctor finishes signing a note, it is available to patients in their electronic record, according to CT Lin, chief medical information officer. Doctors are encouraged to use language such as “you and I have agreed that you will take these actions,” Dr. Lin says. Bella Wong, 39, who had a double lung transplant four years ago at UCHealth’s University of Colorado Hospital, says online access to her own records and doctors’ notes has helped her become a more engaged patient than when she was first diagnosed with lung disease eight years ago and left decisions mostly to doctors. Though she once viewed the word of doctors as “gospel,” she says of her relationship with them now, “I want to know everything that is available to me and understand all my options—you are not just telling me what to do, we are making a decision together.”

https://www.wsj.com/articles/how-to-get-patients-to-take-more-control-of-their-medical-decisions-1488164941

Thanks to the Journal and Laura Landro for a great writeup. Proud of our team, our patients and our organization for sharing this journey.

Arguing For Patient Data Access Amidst Provider Pushback (news article)

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Arguing For Patient Data Access Amidst Provider Pushback

Sara Heath

January 23, 2017 – When OpenNotes came onto the healthcare scene in 2011, it introduced the fairly innovative concept of allowing patients to have full access to their clinicians’ notes. Physicians questioned whether this was the right or responsible approach to interacting with patients, and in some cases, cultural barriers within individual organizations kept providers from widely adopting this strategy…

PatientEngagementHIT.com

Thanks, Sara and Patient Engagement HIT for an excellent write up.

Open Notes: we have the broadest deployment in the country (news)

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http://www.healthdatamanagement.com/news/uchealth-offers-patients-enterprise-wide-access-to-physician-notes

We (UCHealth) show patients their physician progress notes ACROSS our entire enterprise, including:

7 hospitals (discharge summaries)

21 emergency departments (physician progress notes)

350+ outpatient clinics

(soon: 2 out of 8 psychiatry clinics as of mid February 2017).

Onward and upward!

Open Notes, a how-to Webinar with Homer Chin MD and CT Lin MD via HealthsystemCIO

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Well folks, here’s more information about Open Notes from a physician who led a city-wide initiative to get ALL the hospital systems to adopt Open Notes, nearly a decade ago, with resulting excellent patient engagement and satisfaction and improved outcomes. And then I’m also on the webinar, too! Seriously, Homer Chin MD, formerly of Kaiser Northwest, where they pioneered many aspects of Open Notes, was able to collaborate with competitor healthcare systems throughout Portland and take the entire city to Open Notes; one of the few community wide collaborations of the sort.
If you’ve not been paying attention to the growing Open Notes tsunami, well, in a nutshell, its the idea of patients viewing their doctor’s progress notes about them, online.
Listen to the HealthsystemCIO.com youtube channel recording of our 30 minute webinar:
We’ve been live on Open Notes in one form or another since our original research back in 2000, but we finally went system-wide in May 2016. None of the anticipated fears of the docs materialized in a significant way (fears of: too many phone calls, lawsuits from offended patients, volumes of complaints about pejorative terms). We found lots of benefits: patients more engaged in their care, patients more adherent to therapy, patients asking better questions (instead of “what’s my test result”, more like “I read about my results, and does it mean this or that?”).
However, not everything is straightforward; from a technology standpoint, remember to set Open Notes as “default on” with docs having to “opt out”. This will get your open notes release rate into the 95-99% range. If you allow docs to “opt in”, requiring a doc to press a button to allow a patient to view their notes, your release rates will be in the single digits. Just like Staples’ infamous EASY button, in informatics, we want to MAKE THE RIGHT THING EASY.
If any of you have not read Leading Change (maybe a blog post on this in the future), it is one of my all-time favorite and most useful books for CMIO’s. Creating a burning platform was one thing I never did well in the early days of our Patient Portal and transparency efforts. Turns out, our research and scientific data, without corroborating human stories, did not change minds and hearts. Who knew? The medical leadership at our health system did not agree to go along with this project, back in the early 2000’s.
This time (2016), I packaged Open Notes as part of our EHR system upgrade (hey, guys, turns out Epic version upgrade that’s coming on May 16, 2016 ONLY COMES WITH OPEN NOTES! Let me help you get ready for that!), obtained the leadership buy-in from our CMO’s, developed a thorough marketing plan, met in-person with key physician leaders (specifically, loud and opinionated physician ctlukeepicmanbigleaders), enlisted patients from our Patient and Family Centered Care council, conducted a small Open Notes pilot project in 7 primary care clinics for 6 months, gathered good left-brain-appealing statistics and right-brain-appealing stories, and generally jumped in with both feet.
If you stay till the end, you might hear (an improved) rendition of Doc Prudence, my anthem to Open Notes on the ukulele.
From Twitter @CIOCHIME

 

At the heart of healthcare: caring

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A Letter to the Doctors and Nurses

In this incredible, short letter, a young man reminds us what outstanding healthcare is all about. Caring not only for our (sometimes critically ill) patients, but also their spouses, their families, sometimes even their cat! Don’t miss this.

This puts into perspective our efforts in Healthcare Information Technology. In my view, the world is changing quickly. Technology improves. Software improves. Regulations … well, don’t improve, they change, they increase. Someone said   Change is easy, until you change something I care about.  Yes.

So often, our EHR efforts are met with resistance. We are often the face of Change to our physicians and nurses. We should remember, this letter links us back to our common goal, caring for patients, easing their suffering. I recall hearing the saying, in healthcare:  To cure sometimes, to relieve often, to comfort always. 

Others have written about the 20 percent physician (caution: huge 100+ page pdf), and I have had my worries about IBM’s Watson or other machine learning devices coming to take my job.

In my ideal world, the perfect EHR works behind the scenes to improve quality, safety, but otherwise disappears, and allows human connection and caring. This is our aspiration. Thank you Peter DeMarco, and your wife, for reminding us of the best of ourselves.