Posts tagged ‘Healthcare’

Dr. John Mattson – Streamlining Postoperative Reporting


Orthopedic surgeon Dr. John Mattson, a consultant to mTuitive OpNote, recently gave an interview to Healthcare Informatics about the benefits of mTuitive OpNote and how his experiences with reporting helped inform OpNote’s development.

Click here to read the whole interview!

November 30, 2010 at 11:05 am Leave a comment

Health Information Managers – We Want to Hear From You!

While developing OpNote, mTuitive has sent out numerous surveys to various sectors of the healthcare industry. We’ve heard from surgeons, coders and hospital administrators to help us figure out the best ways to improve postoperative reporting. By gaining feedback from domain experts (and our targeted customers), we can identify issues that need to be addressed in the current system and more accurately create solutions for everyone that would be affected by adoption of mTuitive OpNote.

We are now reaching out to HIM professionals to gain their perspective and build the business case. If you are unfamiliar with the design of OpNote, please follow this link for an example of a completed report. OpNote’s goals are to make better use of transcription resources, streamline the reporting process and capture discrete data for use in disease registries, outcomes analysis and quality reporting initiatives.

Thank you for your time and your input!

Click here to take survey

June 2, 2010 at 5:13 pm Leave a comment

Introducing the OpNote Consultants: Carl Brown, MD, MSc, FRCSC

While creating our surgical reporting product, the OpNote, we at mTuitive have been working with many highly skilled surgeons.  These surgeons are from a diverse group of specialties and backgrounds and help to shape the future and efficacy of the OpNote.  We’re introducing these consultants to all of you in the coming weeks.

Dr. Carl Brown completed medical school at McMaster University in 1995 and his general surgery training at the University of Calgary in 2003.  He subsequently worked as a general surgeon at the Peter Lougheed Centre in Calgary.  In 2004, he moved to Toronto to train as a sub specialist in Colorectal Surgery. Concurrent with his fellowship, Dr. Brown completed his master’s degree in clinical research at the University of Toronto.   In 2006, he joined the surgical staff of St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver.

Dr. Brown is the chairman of the Research and Outcomes Evaluation Committee at the British Columbia Cancer Agency and an active member of the Colorectal Cancer Outcomes Unit. He is a member of the Surgical Oncology Network of British Columbia Executive. The goal of these groups is to improve the outcomes of patients with colorectal cancer through research initiatives.

Dr. Brown is the assistant program director of the general surgery residency program at the University of British Columbia. He coordinates the Surgery Leadership Program for general surgery trainees.  Over the past three years, Dr. Brown has published several studies on surgery for colorectal cancer, the ileal pouch procedure and surgery for Crohn’s disease. Furthermore, he has taught courses in laparoscopic colorectal cancer surgery.

How did you get interested in medicine?

I was always interested in science but, more importantly, I like interacting with people and helping people.  While it may seem cliché, [medicine] has turned out to be everything I had hoped it would be.  I do get to help people every day.  There’s never a day that I go home after work without feeling satisfied that I’ve accomplished something.

Wow – that’s great.

Yeah, it’s really true.  You know, it sounds kind of clichéd and maybe even a little cheesy, but it is so true.

What attracted you to surgery?  What made you go with that specialty out of all the possible paths in medicine?

Firstly, I’m a fix-it kind of guy.  I like to fix things.  It’s always been something I’ve been fairly strong at – growing up in a small town, we always took it upon ourselves to fix things around the house.   A lot of what we do in medicine is tweaking things: giving a little medication to make someone feel a little bit better.  And that is very important.

But I like the “fix”.  I like the stress and the pressure of having someone who has a life threatening illness and taking on the incredible responsibility and trust of that person by operating on them.  Many times what I do cures the person of that problem.  It’s very gratifying – very immediate.  It’s sort of what I think medicine’s all about.

How did you first hear about mTuitive and the OpNote product?

I’m an academic surgeon at a major Canadian university.  My main research interest for over seven years now has been synoptic reporting and improving processes of care in surgery.  About 6 years ago I published an article in the journal Surgery about synoptic reporting and its benefits.  It’s always been an interest of mine.

Concurrently, as I’ve worked through my career, I’ve become more interested in cancer.  There’s a big push to have synoptic reporting in cancer surgery – much like there is excellent synoptic reporting in cancer pathology.  I feel strongly that [synoptic reporting in surgery] is a simple thing that we can add that can potentially improve patient care and save lives.

Through my work with the provincial organization in British Columbia I was introduced to the mTuitive products.  I saw it as a possible solution to a lot of our problems.

(more…)

March 26, 2010 at 4:18 pm Leave a comment

Strategies for a Brave New World

Via Minnesota 2020

Despite our current economic climate, with its historic unemployment numbers, studies are showing that there will be a workforce shortage in healthcare within the next 5 – 10 years.  This conclusion has been drawn from multiple reports issued from different investigative committees – including committees formed by the American Hospital Association and the National Academies – Institute of Medicine.  So while it’s hard to think of any sector right now wanting for jobs – that appears to be the direction in which healthcare is heading.

One of the key issues exacerbating the declining worker population is the impending retirement of around 78 million members of the “Baby Boomer” generation.  As National Academies points out, currently there is one physician trained in geriatric medicine for every 2,500 older Americans.  The average 75 year-old American has three chronic conditions and uses at least four prescription medications.  As this demographic expands (as Baby Boomers age), this will mean an increase in patients who need more care, more attention and more workers.

What are solutions to this problem?  How can health professionals ensure that this steep decline in workers won’t translate into a lack of care for patients or added stress on an already overextended workforce?  And how do Health IT products – like the mTuitive OpNote – help physicians and facilities improve their workflows and organizations to cope with this transition?

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March 19, 2010 at 4:02 pm Leave a comment

Dictation is Public Enemy #1

Pete O’Toole

Healthcare is the biggest political issue in the US right now.  It’s a huge financial problem for everyone – individuals, businesses, the government and healthcare providers themselves.  It’s become so overwhelming that it has gridlocked congress.  The word “healthcare” just deflates everyone in the room each time it is uttered.  Despite all the frustration and everyone’s acceptance that “healthcare is broken,” most of us can’t name concrete problems in healthcare.  There is a vague sense that sometimes too many tests are ordered, but when it’s you who may need the tests, it’s not a problem.  Personally, I think that modern medicine is amazing, and nowhere in the world is it taught or practiced better than in the US.

I prefer to look for solutions to this crisis in places that do not take away from patient care.  For me, the first place to look is not in cutting screening for cancers – even if “only” 1 in 1000 people in a certain age range may actually test positive.  I think 1 person in 1000 is actually quite a lot to dismiss.  I realize there are excesses in the administration of healthcare — doctors who might be gaming the system, patients who might be hypochondriacs and lawyers who force doctors to practice overly defensively — and that it needs to be addressed.

The world's most powerful computer at Columbia University's Watson Lab, 1954.

There are many other places we can look to save money in healthcare.  One problem that will probably only get worse is medical transcription.  Decades ago, it made more sense for doctors to speak into a microphone and let a professional typist translate that dictation into a typed sheet of paper, than it did to try to make every doctor a professional typist.  When the first computerized medical records came out in the late 1960s, this practice naturally moved right over to support entry into these systems.  In fact, these systems were little more than glorified word processors, and many of them unfortunately have not progressed much beyond that point.  Early computer applications, although exciting, were hard to use.  Human-computer interaction as a field was barely born and would not influence the industry for a long time.  In the 1960s, this workflow made perfect sense.  Let doctors treat patients and let typists type.

(more…)

March 15, 2010 at 5:33 am Leave a comment

Introducing the OpNote Consultants: Dr. Roger N. Chabra

While creating our surgical reporting product, the OpNote, we at mTuitive have been working with many highly skilled surgeons.  These surgeons are from a diverse group of specialties and backgrounds and help to shape the future and efficacy of the OpNote.  We’re introducing these consultants to all of you in the coming weeks.

Dr. Roger Nathan Chabra graduated in 1962 from Christian Medical College of Punjab University in India.  For his post-graduate surgical training, he went to the United Kingdom and became Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh in 1969.

In 1970, he emigrated to the United States and went through a complete surgical residency program at Boston University Medical Center.  He joined Cape Cod Hospital as Attending General Surgeon in 1974 where he worked until his retirement in 2000.

During his time at Cape Cod Hospital he was on the faculty of Boston University Medical School as Clinical Instructor in Surgery and was involved in training surgical residents and medical students rotating through the hospital, which is an affiliate of the Department of Surgery at Boston University Hospital.

How did you get interested in medicine?

Where I grew up, in India, there’s a lot of influence of the parents.   In a subtle way, they decide what their children are going to be.  So there was this slow…”brainwashing” may be too strong a term.

(Laughs)

But that was going on all the time.  It was almost difficult to escape that concept.  In a country like India, you do not want to disappoint your parents, or make them unhappy because you chose something different than what they wanted.

So the die was cast, as far as I was concerned.

Why did you decide to become a surgeon?

I had surgery at a very young age.  I was in this magnificent hospital and I saw the aura around the surgeon and the nurses.   The reverence and respect they received.

“My god,” I said, “I want to be like them one of these days.”

So that drove me into surgery.  My original field was going to be chest surgery, because I had thoracic surgery done on myself.  That didn’t pan out, so instead I became a general surgeon.

(more…)

March 5, 2010 at 4:27 pm 1 comment

Introducing the OpNote Consultants: Dr. Deanna Attai Part 2 of 2

While creating our surgical reporting product, the OpNote, we at mTuitive have been working with many highly skilled surgeons.  These surgeons are from a diverse group of specialties and backgrounds and help to shape the future and efficacy of the OpNote.  We’re introducing these consultants to all of you in the coming weeks.

Dr. Deanna Attai is an accomplished breast surgeon certified in General Surgery by the American Board of Surgeons in 1997.  Dr. Attai is also a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, certified in Breast Ultrasound and is an instructor in Breast Ultrasound Education for the American College of Surgeons.  She is affiliated with Providence St. Joseph Medical Center in Burbank, CA and runs the Center for Breast Care, Inc.  For more information on Dr. Attai, the Center for Breast Care, Inc. and breast health awareness, please visit her website.  Dr. Attai and I recently spoke over the phone regarding her background in surgery, interest in electronic reporting and why it is so important for surgeon to be aware of medical coding.

Click here for Part 1!

How much do you think could be gained from structured data?  I’m defining “structured data” as capturing a point of data that can be graphed or used for research later.  We at mTuitive put a lot of value into it – do you think a lot of other physicians do?

I’m not sure if a lot of other physicians would – but they should.  That’s how things are going: you need to pull out your cancer staging for some of the stuff that I’m doing with American Society of Breast Surgeons (ASBS) and we’ve got this quality initiative program where you’re entering in some of your data.  Everybody’s going towards quality reporting; it’s going to be part of board certification requirements; it’s going to eventually be part of Medicare and other insurance participation [programs].

Are they looking for quality or for data research purposes?  You can’t always anticipate how the data will be used in the future or what you’ll need.

People need to be told just how important it is.  You’re not just dictating your operative report so you have something in the hospital chart – everybody’s looking at this stuff now.  Whether it’s the insurance companies, patients, hospital billing, or [the Joint Commission] – everybody’s looking at it.

A lot of physicians don’t understand how important it is but they are going to be told very quickly.  Those that do understand will get it, and I think a lot of hospital administrators will understand – now it’s just getting the docs to buy into it, as we don’t like to change.

(more…)

February 19, 2010 at 10:35 am 6 comments

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