ACT.md Blog

Reflections and Shout-outs from ONC's 2018 Annual Meeting in Washington, DC

By Amy Vreeland | December 7, 2018 at 5:20 PM

The ONC is the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.  Every year, ONC hosts an Annual Meeting to convene health IT leaders from across the country to discuss the current state of affairs in interoperability, technical standards, and many other topics.  I attended the event as a leader of ACT.md, a cloud-based community care coordination platform, and was pleased to see social determinants of health given such a high priority on the agenda this year.

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For National Health IT Week '18, automation in healthcare gets the spotlight

By Dan Kamyck | October 10, 2018 at 6:37 PM

Every year since 2006, HIMSS has recognized a nationwide awareness week focused on sparking action and change within the US health system through the application of information and technology.  In 2018, National Health IT Week is celebrated from October 8-12.  ONC Director Don Rucker, MD marked the occasion this year with a call to arms around a hot topic: automation in healthcare.

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How to help community health workers succeed, according to UPenn research

By Akshita Singh | October 9, 2018 at 5:44 PM

Many healthcare organizations are trying to improve population health with a concerted effort around the social determinants of health. An area of innovation and promise is the use of community health workers, or CHWs, which are individuals from local communities who can see and act on social issues that are invisible to community outsiders, as a result of their personal lived experiences and established relationships.

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Social Determinants of Health Innovation in New York State

By Amy Vreeland | September 28, 2018 at 3:45 PM

ACT.md was honored to be invited to share a poster presentation at the Social Determinants of Health Innovations Summit hosted by the New York Department of Health earlier this week.  It was a wonderful opportunity to talk to people about their innovative ideas and approaches to helping address the social determinants of health for New Yorkers.  Thanks to everyone for their interest in ACT.md’s approach, too. And wow - what a wonderful turnout of people who are committed to creating innovative approaches to help address the social determinants keeping people from their best health.

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How CareMore’s Togetherness Program is Tackling the Loneliness Epidemic

By Akshita Singh | September 25, 2018 at 10:26 AM

An increasing number of health care providers and health delivery systems are beginning to understand that loneliness is far more than a temporary feeling or theoretical idea, but rather, a condition with clear adverse effects on health. Physician and former US Surgeon General, Dr. Vivek Murthy, stated, “the most common pathology I saw was not heart disease or diabetes, it was loneliness.” He went on to further explain that rates of loneliness have doubled since the 1980s and called the loneliness crisis a “growing epidemic.”

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Care coordination, SDOH focus helped NY reduce Medicaid readmissions by 18%

By Amy Vreeland | July 9, 2018 at 12:52 PM

As we all know, Medicaid systems are under intense pressure to redesign care and improve outcomes. Kudos to New York on an innovative approach that is showing great results. Through their Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) efforts, the state Department of Health recently reported an 18-percent decrease in hospital readmissions for high-risk Medicaid patients over a three-year period.

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Digital Tool for Patient-Reported Cancer Symptoms Extends Survival

By Dan Kamyck | June 6, 2017 at 6:03 PM

Symptom management is a core concern of oncology practice, with clinicians trying to alleviate suffering and avoid complications for advanced cancer patients. However, up to half of symptoms go missed between visits, seriously challenging clinicians' symptom management efforts and impacting patient survival.

A potential solution: Systemic symptom monitoring via web-based interface. According to a randomized trial, patients' use of a digital tool was associated with improved quality of life and longer overall survival – by almost half a year. “This approach should be considered for inclusion as a part of standard symptom management,”said Dr. Ethan Basch, principal investigator.

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How NewYork–Presbyterian built an "innovation stack"

By Dan Kamyck | May 24, 2017 at 12:50 PM

Senior leaders at NewYork–Presbyterian (NYP) noticed that innovative care redesign pilot projects involving new technologies would "require 90% of the work of a full implementation but often result in a dead end."

Their solution: A structured approach to tackle large-scale challenges with technology that can be quickly scaled across the NYP enterprise. In under a year, they implemented a set of six interrelated activities for leadership, front-line buy-in, and engagement – what Emma Deland, Chief Strategy Officer, calls their "innovation stack".

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