Promoting Patient Engagement Via the Vital Interaction™ Care Coordination Tool

Most of us in the healthcare industry have heard—and likely on more than one occasion—that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In a nutshell, preventive care is vital to maintaining good health.

And numerous studies have shown that patient engagement improves outcomes.

As such, a key focus of public health and medical professionals in recent years has been to promote prevention among patients as well as engagement in their own health care.

Look no further than our health plans, which are now structured to facilitate annual wellness checks and ensure patients get the right tests at the right time to catch diseases early on, when they are most manageable or treatable.

The National Health Observances (NHOs)—dates that are dedicated to the promotion of a particular health issues—are also telling of our healthcare system’s focus on prevention. NHOs, in particular, provide key opportunities for medical practices to educate the public about specific health concerns, such as cancer prevention.

One of our newest features—the Vital Interaction™ Care Coordination Tool—enables medical practices to communicate directly with patients about NHOs, ultimately improving patient engagement.

Read on for a look at ways that you can leverage this new tool to promote patient engagement, strengthen the doctor-patient relationship, and improve outcomes.

“National Health Observances provide medical practices with key opportunities for educating patients about specific health concerns, such as cancer prevention, and ultimately, promoting #patientengagement.”tweet.png

The Vital Interaction™ Care Coordination Tool’s Role in Promoting Patient Engagement

The Vital Interaction™ team is always seeking innovative, streamlined solutions to further improve our customers’ level of patient engagement and strengthen  doctor-patient relationships.

And one of our premiere features, the Care Coordination Tool, achieves just that.

This leading-edge tool combines the power of clinical data analytics with our proven patient engagement strategies to recall and reactivate patients who might otherwise slip through the cracks.

Specifically, the Vital Interaction™ Care Coordination Tool gives medical practices the power to identify patients meeting specific criteria—such as those needing to return for a certain kind of follow-up appointment—and then directly message them.

Many practices, for example, are already taking advantage of time-based recall campaigns to ensure patients don’t slip through the cracks when it comes to scheduling wellness checkups. (If your practice isn’t, it’s time to speak with your account manager.)

Our Care Coordination Tool further streamlines practices’ recall efforts. With this new tool, we’re now able to easily define very specific criteria and find patients matching it, and then create custom messages to send to those patients.

Let’s take a look at a couple of examples on strategic ways that your medical practice can start putting this tool to use.

Targeted Recall and Patient Engagement Campaign for Routine Screenings

May is National Osteoporosis Month, with the chief focus being to boost awareness about building bone strength and density during early years in life to achieve peak bone mass and to maintain optimal bone health and strength.

For patients who meet certain criteria, Medicare covers a bone density test—which checks patients for risk of broken bones—once every 24 months.

Vital Interaction™ customers serving patients needing a bone density test can use the Care Coordination Tool to easily identify them and send them a customized reminder message.

To generate a comprehensive list of patients meeting the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ guidelines for a bi-annual bone density screening, follow the steps below, choosing the appropriate selections via the Care Coordination Tool:

Option 1

  1. Gender = female
  2. Previously diagnosed for estrogen deficiency (disorders of other endocrine glands (E20–E35))
  3. Age between 65 and 100 years (or primary insurance = medicare)

Option 2

  1. Previously diagnosed with osteoporosis (M81.0), osteopenia (M85.80), vertebral fractures (S32.009A), or hyperthyroidism (E05.90)
  2. Age between 65 years and 100 years (or primary insurance = medicare)

Next, simply take the above list of patients and remove those patients who have either had the test in the last two years or are having the test done within the next 30 days.

  1. Bone Mass Measurement CPT Codes = 77078, 77080, 77081, 77085, 76977, G0130
  2. Encounter Date = 365 x 2 = 730 days in the past though 30 days in the future

Once you’ve built the list of qualifying patients, it’s time to send friendly reminder messages. Your message may read something along the lines of the following:

May is National Osteoporosis Month, and {Group Name} promotes regular screenings to catch early signs of bone loss. Call our office today at {phone number} to schedule a bone density test.”

When running a targeted recall and patient engagement campaign, it’s essential to have schedulers ready with key screening questions, in addition to answers to common patient questions and concerns.

And just like that, you’ve successfully turned awareness into action, from which both your patients and your practice will greatly benefit.

Targeted Recall and Patient Engagement Campaign for Follow-up Care

Another example or useful way that practices can leverage the Care Coordination Tool is tracking long-term follow-up care for procedures, like total hip replacements and knee arthroplasty surgeries.

In a perfect world, we’d never break bones, wear out our knees, or fall and shatter our hips. And even if we did, we’d always follow up regularly to ensure that implanted prosthetic devices were holding up over time.

But that’s simply not the world we live in.

Monitoring long-term follow-up care can be a challenge, to say the least. Hoping your patients remember to come back each year, or relying on postcard reminders, is a longshot at best.

This is where our Care Coordination Tool comes into play.

Assume, for example, you’re running an orthopedic practice, and your specialty is total knee replacements.  

Some of your patients had their knee replacement done by one of your providers, while others had it done elsewhere but are now under your care.

Let’s find all patients who have had encounter codes for knee arthroplasty (the CPT code range for replacement, revision, and removal = 27438, 27446, 27447, 27486, 27487, 27488).

Next, let’s identify those patients who have an artificial knee joint (ICD-10 = Z96.651 (right), Z96.652 (left), Z96.653 (bilateral), Z96.659 (unspecified) or ICD-9 = V43.65).

You now have a complete list of patients in your practice who have an implanted prosthetic knee.

Depending on your clinical guidelines, you may not want to recall anyone you’ve seen in the last year for a follow-up appointment. To do this, simply exclude patients with an encounter date -365 days through 30 days in the future. This prevents the Vital Interaction™ system from contacting patients who already have appointments scheduled.

However, for those you do want to recall, you might consider sending a simple message—perhaps something like:

{Group_Name} cares about your health. Call us today at {phone_number} to schedule your annual follow up visit.

Once we’ve built a recall campaign for you, our system will continually search for patients matching your defined criteria and prompt them to schedule appointments.

How could your practice benefit from an automated recall and patient engagement campaign?

If you’re a current Vital Interaction™ customer, we’d love to learn more about your practice’s needs and show you how we can leverage the new Care Coordination Tool to generate more patient appointments and achieve sustained patient engagement and improved outcomes.

Medical practices have unique needs. Our Vital Interaction™ team of patient communication and engagement specialists understands those challenges and works with practices to overcome them. Partner with us today by calling (512) 487-7625.

Interested in seeing what your Return on Investment (ROI) could be with Vital Interaction?

Ready to power up your practice?

Please complete the form so we can contact you with more information about how Vital Interaction can help grow your practice.