Tag Archives: interoperability

Consolidate Your Software For Patient Engagement To Avoid Security & Compliance Risks

Healthcare organizations strive to provide the best patient engagement experience possible. In order to do this, many organizations result in implementing piecemealed solutions to provide all the features patients demand today.

In-demand features include:

This patient engagement strategy may end up costing healthcare organizations and patients in the long run, as siloed patient engagement programs increase security and HIPAA compliance risks. Implementing a singular, consolidated patient engagement solution that includes in-demand features can mitigate security and compliance risks in multiple ways.

1. Respect Patient Communication Preferences

There are multiple ways a healthcare organization can communicate with their patient population. Any tools used to communicate with patients must respect a patient’s communication preferences.

Methods of communication can include the following:

  • IVR (Interactive Voice Response-based calls also support user-input responses like “Press 1 to confirm, or 2 to cancel your upcoming appointment.”)
  • SMS
  • Email
  • Push notifications
  • Bidirectional patient text messaging (via a patient portal or mobile app)

To support the quality of care for patients, healthcare organizations should have correct patient engagement data such as contact details in addition to updated communication preferences. Providers can then more effectively reach patients and relay important information about their care, including appointment reminders, lab results, medical bills, and educational materials. Patients are more inclined to update their communication preferences and contact details on only one patient engagement platform, rather than performing the same task across multiple patient engagement systems used by the same healthcare organization.

Updated information within the healthcare organization should be shared with all patient engagement programs, including the organization’s source systems, such as Electronic Health Record (EHR), Revenue Cycle Management (RCM), and Practice Management (PM) systems. When using more than one software for patient engagement, healthcare organizations should ensure these systems can effectively communicate with each other so that any data updated within one system is shared with all other systems. If this integration is not in place, patient engagement data must be manually updated within all systems. Failure to honor a patient’s communication preferences may result in a HIPAA violation.

Recommended: How to Send Automated Medical Appointment Reminders Without Jeopardizing Patients’ Data Security

2. Ensure HIPAA Compliance

To be HIPAA compliant, healthcare organizations must conduct regular risk analyses, covering all software for patient engagement that interacts with electronic protected health information (ePHI). Risk analyses identify potential risks to the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of ePHI. Any risks and vulnerabilities identified must be mitigated to a reasonable and acceptable level to avoid penalties. It’s easy to ensure that one consolidated patient engagement solution is HIPAA compliant (versus a mixture of fragmented tools) and that the patient engagement solution provider will sign a business associate agreement. HIPAA also requires encryption at rest and in transit for all stored and transmitted ePHI between your connected patient engagement programs

software for patient engagement

3. Prevent Security Breaches

When a healthcare organization has multiple patient engagement programs connected to their source system (EHR, PM, RCM, LIS, RIS, etc.), they increase the risk of a security breach. This is due to the higher number of access points that have been opened for these systems. There is an increased risk of data becoming corrupt/damaged within the patient database as more software/systems are permitted to view and edit patient data. Managing one piece of software is more straightforward than ensuring multiple solutions are operating safely and securely. Furthermore, it’s easier to conduct a cybersecurity gap analysis within a centralized software solution.

Improve operational efficiencies, prioritize security and HIPAA compliance, and bolster patient satisfaction by consolidating your patient engagement solutions into a feature-rich, client-branded web application or mobile app. Bridge helps healthcare organizations streamline their business processes and enhance patient engagement with an all-in-one solution capable of retiring “one-off” tools.

Pablo, our Chief Information Security Officer, architected and manages Bridge’s HIPAA-compliant hosting infrastructure. He is an Amazon Web Services (AWS) Certified Solutions Architect and is about to receive a Masters degree from the University of Buenos Aires in Computer and Information Systems Security and Information Assurance. He has a passion for all things related to cybersecurity and cloud hosting.

Avoid High Interface Costs & Pushback From EHR Vendors PART 1

Calculator

 

Calculator

Interoperability is necessary for the attainment of a more efficient healthcare system and the use of HIEs. It puts important patient data at physicians’ fingertips, allowing for more informed decision-making and better continuity of care. Interoperability is on the rise, spurred by government efforts to increase health information exchange; however, barriers by EHR vendors often make it difficult for organizations to effectively share patient data.

If EHR companies advertising interoperability at HIMSS in recent years is any indication of vendor commitment to the cause, one would think that connecting EHR software to third-party solutions is easy. The reality, however, is altogether different. Despite government efforts (ie. MACRA) to drive changes in the ability of disparate IT systems to connect to one another, exchange data and use the information that has been exchanged, interoperability remains a big challenge for many healthcare organizations. The creation of integration standards such as CCD and FHIR are great concepts, but CCD has been mainstream for many years and still EHR vendors struggle to support a quality CCD file.

Part of the blame for the lack of progress on interoperability can be placed on some of the larger EHR vendors that make it difficult for organizations to integrate third-party software solutions with their EHRs. In most cases, large medical practices can expect to spend anywhere between $5,000 and $20,000 for uni-directional data feed access. These prices increase dramatically as complexity increases and for larger hospitals and health systems. This is not cheap, and it’s not the only obstacle that EHR vendors can legally put in the way.

In addition to charging exorbitant fees for interface development, vendors also create barriers to interoperability in the following ways:

  • They prohibit access to the EHR database outright.
  • They allow read-only access to the data feed.
  • They allow data to be sent, but not received in any way.
  • They delay the process to the point where interest by the physician is lost.

“One reason big EHR companies have this policy where they try to limit data feed access is that they’re afraid of customers getting away from them,” says Kemp Stephens, VP of Sales at PrognoCIS. “The customer might notice deficiencies in the EHR system, or they might find things they like better about the other product and consider using that company for other things as well.” PrognoCIS welcomes third-party integrations with its EHR, working with companies like Bridge Patient Portal whom specialize in hospital, clinic, IDN and HIE patient portals to deliver solutions that truly meet customers’ needs.

Though it is becoming more and more difficult for vendors to place obstacles in the way of interoperability without losing customers to more forward-thinking companies, for now the problem remains; and physicians must find alternative ways to surpass vendor regulations.

“It takes an educated consumer to know how to approach that conversation with their EHR vendor,” says Leana Gorsline, Director of Business Development for X-Link. Similar to other medical software interfacing companies, X-Link educates physicians on the options available to them in terms of finding workarounds for affordable interface development.

So, what exactly are the options for practices that want to integrate a third-party patient portal EHR or practice management system with their EHR?

Choose a vendor that is truly committed to interoperability.

Though connecting to the EHR database may not be a necessity now for all healthcare organizations, it will be at some point in order to achieve a truly interoperable health IT infrastructure. For this reason, it is important for physicians to have a discussion about interoperability with their EHR vendor early on, this way expectations are clear if and when data feed access is needed. The earlier this discussion is carried out the better, as the negotiation process could get drawn out, delaying potentially critical software integrations.

Two things to consider when searching for an EHR vendor that really cares about interoperability and that won’t make it difficult to support an integration:

  • Look for a vendor that has a functioning API with timelines for access to the API and clearly documented pricing schedules.
  • Look for a vendor that has a relationship with a third-party company or interface engine that can facilitate the integration.

Work with a third-party company that can go right to the database.

When an EHR vendor isn’t able bundle their practice management software or patient portal with their EHR, they may look for ways to offset the cost of the solutions that they weren’t able to sell. Charging expensive interface fees is one way to recover lost revenue. Third-party interfacing companies can oftentimes provide the same services, but for a fraction of the cost.

The demand for companies that service the needs of underserved EHR customers is growing faster than ever, and it is being driven by the need for interoperability and the shortcomings of larger EHR vendors. X-Link and MTS Healthcare are two examples of companies that partner with vendors such as Bridge in order to provide valuable third-party interfacing services. Both have developed unique methodologies for navigating vendor policies and keeping costs down for physicians. This is all done with permission from the healthcare organization after verifying that such access is permitted in the end-user license agreement.

Many third-party companies also offer custom integrations as an alternative to the out-of-the-box interface solutions offered by EHR vendors. Interface technology that allows for the selection of data types (e.g. appointments or demographics) to be sent to unconventional places is becoming necessary and at an inexpensive cost. Most vendor-led solutions are either too costly or do not fit the functionality needs of customers. Solutions like X-Link cater to these specific needs and even surpass them by providing a means to customize off-the-shelf interface solutions that can be implemented to each customer’s needs.

Bridge offers an integrated patient portal EHR through interfaces developed into many of the leading EHR vendors, namely NextGen, GE Centricity and Allscripts.

For more information on Bridge’s current interface capabilities please see the following link.

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

How Bridge Improves Patient Engagement for McKesson Users

Bridge over river

Bridge over riverMany of the today’s leading health information technology organizations that offer a full suite of solutions, such as McKesson, are on a general trend of developing less and less software.  As these organizations dedicate fewer resources to maintaining their previous developed software it makes it hard to trust in these organizations as long term partners, especially as their cost-effective solutions continue to diminish in lieu of higher-priced offerings. When it comes to the EHR space, McKesson is unique, as unlike many EHR vendors that offer only a single product, McKesson offers multiple. These include McKesson Practice Plus, Paragon, and InteGreat EHR. (more…)

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

How Bridge Improves Patient Engagement for Greenway Health™ Users

Bridge Patient Portal

Updated on June 21, 2020.

Greenway Health

Greenway Health™ provides electronic health records (EHR), practice management (PM), and revenue cycle services (RCS) for ambulatory clinics and various specialty practices.

Greenway Health™ users frequently come to Bridge seeking a solution to increase patient engagement in their healthcare organizations. Bridge offers an industry-leading user experience through its patient-centric design, mobile app, and robust EHR/PM interfaces. Some of the more common reasons to switch to Bridge’s patient engagement solution include:

  • Cumbersome patient registration
  • Lack of robust messaging functionality
  • Lack of customizability

Bridge offers multiple methods by which patients can sign up for a portal account, making patient registration easier. These include:

  • In-office registration: Patients can sign up at the front desk, before or after their visit.
  • Patient portal self-registration: Patients can create an account on their own, at home, or at work.

Bridge helps engage patients with its omnichannel messaging solution (SMS text, email, push) so healthcare organizations can leverage a single patient messaging software that knows and respects patient communication preferences across channels.

Bridge offers a vendor-neutral patient portal and patient engagement solution, which can connect with any interfaceable EHR, RCM, or PM software system, including Greenway Health™. In cases where Greenway Health™ is used alongside other EHR and or PM vendors, Bridge can provide a single patient portal and client-branded mobile app which connects these disparate source systems. This provides patients with a “single pane of glass” or “front door” to access important self-service tools via their web browser or through a published iOS or Android mobile app.

Common EHR pain points:

  • Inadequate customizability
  • Deficient interoperability in multi-EHR environments
  • Lack of control over the information sent through a portal, (e.g., sensitive lab results, incomplete progress notes or age-restricted information)
  • No client-branded mobile app for iOS and or Android

Greenway Health

Avoid Piecemealed Patient Engagement Software

Many healthcare organizations leverage numerous third-party patient engagement software vendors to “piece together” a suite of self-service tools for their patients. Some of the more common “one-off” patient engagement tools include:

Common one-off patient engagement tools Examples
Patient portal software EZ Access™, Medfusion™, Intelichart™
Appointment reminder software 10to8 ™, SimplyBook.me™
Patient scheduling software  Odoro™, ZocDoc™
Patient intake software Phreesia™
Telemedicine software SnapMD™, Doxy.me™, Zoom
Patient survey software Patientlink™, Zonka™
Patient messaging software Relatient™, Luma™
Mobile access via a mobile app solution FollowMyHealth®

 

Bridge offers a single patient engagement solution that offers most of the functionality offered in the above-listed systems, helping healthcare organizations build a strong foundation for reaching their patient engagement goals. Purchasing “one-off,” “piecemealed” solutions can result in the following issues:

  • High interface development/maintenance costs
  • Expensive license and utilization fees
  • Inability to respect patient communication preferences
  • The need for patients to remember multiple usernames and passwords

How Bridge Improves Interoperability

Bridge increases interoperability by working with the most prevalent healthcare interface industry standards, including Health Level Seven (HL7), Continuity of Care Document (CCD), and Fast Health Information Resource (FHIR) via Bridge’s robust and fully-documented healthcare API. Bridge can also build custom, non-standard interfaces designed for advanced integration between multiple systems where external compatibility support is not required.

 

Greenway Health

Bridge improves interoperability by enabling you to share data with disparate clinical and financial systems, providing interfaces when and where you need them. Below is a list of our interface capabilities.

Bidirectional

  • Registration & demographics
  • Secure messaging
  • CCDA
  • Bill pay
  • Appointment self-scheduling & cancellation
  • Prescriptive refills
  • Documents
  • Patient-caregiver/proxy relationships

Unidirectional

  • Patient forms (Portal to EHR/PM/RCM)

DISCLAIMER: All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Bridge Patient Portal is not affiliated, endorsed, or sponsored in any way to the service providers mentioned in this article.

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

How Bridge Improves Patient Engagement for Centricity™ Users

Updated on June 15, 2020.

Centricity™ was introduced to the market in 2003 by GE Healthcare™; since then, the software has been acquired by multiple companies including GE Medical Systems™ in 2002, then sold to Virence on July 11, 2018, and is now owned by Athenahealth®, who bought it on Feb. 7, 2019. Bridge is capable of integrating with all of the main Centricity™ EHR/PM products. This includes Centricity Practice Solution (CPS) (now athenaPractice), Centricity Business (now athenaCollector ®), and Centricity EMR (now athenaClinicals®). As Centricity™ does not have its own “built-in” patient portal, it relies on third-party vendors to provide their own integrated patient portal solutions. With these third-party patient portal solutions, there are some common recurring issues.

Centricity™ users frequently come to Bridge seeking a solution to increase patient engagement in their healthcare organizations. Bridge offers an industry-leading user experience through its patient-centric design, mobile app, and robust EHR/PM interfaces. Some of the more common reasons to switch to Bridge’s patient engagement solution include:

  • Cumbersome and inefficient patient registration and username/password reset procedures
  • Limited ability to integrate patient clinical forms into the EHR as discrete data
  • Outdated interface (HL7 interfaces instead of modern FHIR APIs)
  • Lack of scalability
  • Product gaps that require multiple third-party products
  • Desire to consolidate disparate EHR/PM environments into a single consolidated solution
  • Absent mobile app capabilities

The Bridge Patient Portal solution includes:

  • A robust API that provides a modern UI and UX.
  • A fully customizable patient portal solution with the option to add features as healthcare companies grow.
  • An entire range of fully-customizable features is available, preventing any “product gaps.” (e.g., secure SMS/email/push notifications, self-scheduling, medical record access, patient-provider messaging, bill pay, patient check-in, and more.)
  • Seamless interfacing with multiple EMR/EHR software, practice management systems, billing software, apps for patient use, reporting or analytics tools, and more.

Bridge offers a vendor-neutral patient portal and patient engagement solution, which can connect with any interfaceable EHR, RCM, or PM software system, including Centricity™. In cases where Centricity™ is used alongside other EHR and or PM vendors, Bridge can provide a single patient portal and client-branded mobile app which connects these disparate source systems. This provides patients with a “single pane of glass” or “front door” to access important self-service tools via their web browser or through a published iOS or Android mobile app.

Common EHR pain points:

  • Inadequate customizability
  • Deficient interoperability in multi-EHR environments
  • Lack of control over the information sent through a portal (e.g., sensitive lab results, incomplete progress notes or age-restricted information)
  • Absence of a client-branded mobile app for iOS and or Android

Avoid Piecemealed Patient Engagement Software

Many healthcare organizations leverage numerous third-party patient engagement software vendors to “piece together” a suite of self-service tools for their patients. Some of the more common “one-off” patient engagement tools include:

Common one-off patient engagement tools     Examples
Patient portal software EZ Access™, Medfusion™, Intelichart™
Appointment reminder software 10to8 ™, SimplyBook.me™, Solutionreach™
Patient scheduling software  Odoro™, ZocDoc™
Patient intake software Phreesia™
Telemedicine software SnapMD™, Doxy.me™, Zoom
Patient survey software Patientlink™, Zonka™, SurveyVitals™
Patient messaging software Relatient™, Luma™
Mobile app solution FollowMyHealth®

 

Bridge offers a single patient engagement solution that offers most of the functionality offered in the above-listed systems, helping healthcare organizations build a strong foundation for reaching their patient engagement goals. Purchasing “one-off,” “piecemealed” solutions can result in the following issues:

  • High interface development/maintenance costs
  • Expensive license and utilization fees
  • Inability to respect patient communication preferences
  • The need for patients to remember multiple usernames and passwords

How Bridge Improves Interoperability

Bridge increases interoperability by working with the most prevalent healthcare interface industry standards, including Health Level Seven (HL7), Continuity of Care Document (CCD), and Fast Health Information Resource (FHIR) via Bridge’s robust and fully-documented healthcare API. Bridge can also build custom, non-standard interfaces designed for advanced integration between multiple systems where external compatibility support is not required.


Bridge improves interoperability by enabling you to share data with disparate clinical and financial systems, providing interfaces when and where you need them. Below is a list of our interface capabilities.

Bidirectional

  • Registration & demographics
  • Secure messaging
  • CCDA
  • Bill pay
  • Appointment self-scheduling & cancellation
  • Prescriptive refills
  • Documents
  • Patient-caregiver/proxy relationships

Unidirectional

  • Patient forms (Portal to EHR/PM/RCM)

If you’re using Centricity™ you may likely be aware of its limitations and looking for a single patient engagement solution that fits your healthcare organization’s needs. Bridge seamlessly integrates with all of the main Centricity™ EHR/PM products and can simultaneously connect with various other disparate systems to improve interoperability. Our feature-rich, secure, and client-branded platform is used by over 60 outpatient groups, hospitals, integrated delivery networks, and EHR vendors across the US. Contact us today to learn how we’ve helped Centricity™ users improve patient engagement with our comprehensive and easy-to-use solution.

DISCLAIMER: All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Bridge Patient Portal is not affiliated, endorsed, or sponsored in any way to the service providers mentioned in this article.

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

How Bridge Improves Patient Engagement for athenahealth® Users

Updated on August 13, 2020.

athenahealth® has two product lines, the athenahealth® core product, and the recently acquired Centricity product line.

athenahealth® bought Centricity™ on Feb. 7, 2019, from Virence Health. Bridge is capable of integrating with both of the athenahealth® EHR/PM product lines.

Healthcare organizations using athenahealth® frequently come to Bridge seeking a solution to consolidate systems and increase patient engagement. Bridge offers an industry-leading user experience through its patient-centric design, mobile app, and robust EHR/PM interfaces. Some of the more common reasons to switch to Bridge’s patient engagement solution include:

  • The need for a client-branded mobile app.
  • The inability to efficiently include instructions within appointment reminders.
  • Outdated third-party patient portal options for the Centricity product line.

The Bridge Patient Portal solution includes:

  • A robust, FHIR-ready healthcare API that supports bidirectional interfaces into the patient portal data.
  • An enterprise-class set of integrated tools and information that patients need to successfully manage their health from both a web application and mobile app.
  • The 2015 Edition ONC Healthcare IT Certification with advanced CCD, interface, and messaging functionality for both provider groups and EHR vendor.
  • A robust support system via telephone, email, and in-portal ticket.
  • A library of personalized patient education content and instructions relating to an upcoming care visit, typically accessed online, which can be sent via secure patient messaging software, SMS, email, or push notification.

Bridge is especially helpful to healthcare organizations that own multiple EHR and RCM/PM solutions, and who are seeking to connect their disparate EHR/PM/RCM environments with a single patient portal. Bridge offers a vendor-neutral patient portal and patient engagement solution, which can connect with any interfaceable EHR, RCM, or PM software system, including athenahealth®’s products. In cases where athenahealth® is used alongside other EHR and or PM vendors, Bridge can provide a single patient portal and client-branded mobile app which connects these disparate source systems. This provides patients with a “single pane of glass” or “digital front door” to access important self-service tools via their web browser or through a published iOS or Android mobile app.

athenahealth®

Common EHR pain points:

  • Inadequate customizability
  • Deficient interoperability in multi-EHR environments
  • Lack of control over the information sent through a portal (e.g., sensitive lab results, incomplete progress notes or age-restricted information)
  • Absence of a client-branded mobile app for iOS and/or Android

Avoid Piecemealed Patient Engagement Software

Many healthcare organizations leverage numerous third-party patient engagement software vendors to “piece together” a suite of self-service tools for their patients. Some of the more common “one-off” patient engagement tools include:

Common one-off patient engagement tools Examples
Patient portal software EZ Access™, Medfusion™, Intelichart™
Appointment reminder software 10to8 ™, SimplyBook.me™
Patient scheduling software  Odoro™, ZocDoc™
Patient intake software Phreesia™
Telemedicine software SnapMD™, Doxy.me™, Zoom
Patient survey software Patientlink™, Zonka™
Patient messaging software Relatient™, Luma™
Mobile access via a mobile app solution FollowMyHealth®

 

Bridge offers a single patient engagement solution that offers most of the functionality offered in the above-listed systems, helping healthcare organizations build a strong foundation for reaching their patient engagement goals. Purchasing “one-off,” “piecemealed” solutions can result in the following issues:

  • High interface development/maintenance costs
  • Expensive license and utilization fees
  • Inability to respect patient communication preferences
  • The need for patients to remember multiple usernames and passwords

How Bridge Improves Interoperability

Bridge increases interoperability by working with the most prevalent healthcare interface industry standards, including Health Level Seven (HL7), Continuity of Care Document (CCD), and Fast Health Information Resource (FHIR) via Bridge’s robust and fully-documented healthcare API. Bridge can also build custom, non-standard interfaces designed for advanced integration between multiple systems where external compatibility support is not required.

 

Bridge improves interoperability by enabling you to share data with disparate clinical and financial systems, providing interfaces when and where you need them. Below is a list of our interface capabilities.

Bidirectional

  • Registration & demographics
  • Secure messaging
  • CCDA
  • Bill pay
  • Appointment self-scheduling & cancellation
  • Prescriptive refills
  • Documents
  • Patient-caregiver/proxy relationships

Unidirectional

  • Patient forms (Portal to EHR/PM/RCM)

If you’re using athenahealth® you may likely be aware of its limitations and looking for a single patient engagement solution that fits your healthcare organization’s needs. Bridge seamlessly integrates with all of the main athenahealth® EHR/PM products and can simultaneously connect with various other disparate systems to improve interoperability. Our feature-rich, secure, and client-branded platform is used by over 60 outpatient groups, hospitals, integrated delivery networks, and EHR vendors across the US. Contact us today to learn how we’ve helped athenahealth® users improve patient engagement with our comprehensive and easy-to-use solution.

DISCLAIMER: All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Bridge Patient Portal is not affiliated, endorsed, or sponsored in any way to the service providers mentioned in this article.

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

How Bridge Improves Patient Engagement for Allscripts® Users

Bridge over river

Bridge over riverAs a result of acquiring 3rd party software vendors, many of the today’s leading Electronic Health Records (EHR) organizations, such as Allscripts®, offer multiple software platforms, including EHR, patient portals and Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) solutions.  Their patient portals, often lack customizability and have trouble adapting the software to organizations’ unique workflows and preferences. Some of the other underlying issues we have discovered in organizations using EHR-bundled patient portals include:

(more…)

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

How Bridge Improves Patient Engagement for NextGen® Users

Updated on April 17, 2020.

How Bridge Increases Patient Engagement for NextGen® Users

nextgen patient portal

NextGen® is a healthcare solutions provider that supports ambulatory and specialty practices, and it’s users frequently come to Bridge seeking a solution to increase patient engagement in their healthcare organizations. Bridge offers an industry-leading user experience through its patient-centric design, mobile app, and robust electronic health record (EHR) / practice management (PM) interfaces.

 

These are common pain points NextGen® users wish to solve:

  • Patient registration is difficult and oftentimes impossible without staff intervention.
  • Lack of ability to customize scheduling workflows.
  • Lack of control over the information sent to the portal, including sensitive lab results, incomplete progress notes or age-restricted information.
  • The patient portal and app are not client-branded.

Bridge offers a vendor-neutral patient portal and patient engagement solution, which can be interfaced with any EHR, revenue cycle management (RCM), or PM software system, including NextGen’s® EHR and PM solution. In cases where NextGen® EHR and or PM is used alongside other EHR and or PM vendors, Bridge can provide a single patient portal and mobile app which connects these disparate source systems. This provides patients with a “single pane of glass” or “front door,” to access important self-service tools via their web browser or through a published mobile app.

Avoid Piecemealed Patient Engagement Software

Many healthcare organizations leverage numerous third-party patient engagement software vendors to “piece together” a suite of self-service tools for their patients. These types of solutions can result in the following issues:

  • High interface development/maintenance costs 
  • Expensive license and utilization fees
  • A breach in patient communication preferences
  • The need to remember multiple usernames and passwords

How Bridge Improves Interoperability

Bridge increases interoperability by working with the most prevalent healthcare interface industry standards, including Health Level Seven (HL7), Continuity of Care Document (CCD), and Fast Health Information Resource (FHIR) via Bridge’s robust healthcare API. Bridge can also build custom, non-standard interfaces designed for advanced integration between multiple systems where external compatibility support is not required.

Bridge Patient Portal improves interoperability by enabling you to share data with disparate clinical and financial systems, providing interfaces when and where you need them. Below is a list of our interface capabilities and features:

DISCLAIMER: All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Bridge Patient Portal is not affiliated, endorsed, or sponsored in any way to the service providers mentioned in this article.

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

Bridge Patient Portal and MD EMR Systems Partner to Build Integration Between Bridge Patient Portal and GE Centricity EMR and CPS

MD EMR Systems & Bridge Patient Portal

MD EMR Systems & Bridge Patient PortalBridge Patient Portal and MD EMR Systems, an electronic medical record solutions developer and certified development partner for GE, have established a partnership to build an interface between the Bridge Patient Portal product and the GE Centricity™ products, including Centricity Practice Solution (CPS), Centricity Business and Centricity EMR.

These new integrations will allow healthcare delivery networks using GE Centricity to bring a patient-centric and engaging portal to their patients, with seamless integration of data and functionalities between the portal and their EHR. (more…)

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.

The Key to Healthcare Interoperability Is Open Platforms

Helathcare interoperability has become a hot topic in the world of health IT – yet due to its inherent complexity, it remains the biggest hurdle to efficient and effective use of communication across a broad spectrum of systems and solutions. Whether healthcare organizations are using EMRs, telemedicine, patient portals, mHealth or EMPIs, it is necessary for there to be a “common denominator” between those systems in order to achieve interconnectivity. The common denominator is an open architecture platform by which all communication can occur.

Google and Apple are two high-profile examples of open architecture platforms – Google with Android and Apple with iOS. Both companies encourage the introduction of new, highly useful functionality through plug-n-play applications, despite having been developed by different companies. Not all companies, however, are as open and welcoming as Apple and Google.

At the opposite end of the spectrum are the closed architecture platforms such as Epic and Greenway that don’t easily allow for third-party vendors to interface with their EMRs. Meaningful Use has forced these companies to allow interoperability, albeit not without varying degrees of resistance.

If the healthcare industry wants to go down the path that leads to interoperability, open sources, open standards and open platforms are the vehicles that are going to lead us there – and the keys with which to start these vehicles are application programming interfaces (APIs). APIs will specify how software components will interact with one another when all the systems involved are tied together. APIs, for example, can tie-in multiple EMRs so that data is shared easily between different systems.

What to look for when tying together multiple systems?

healthcare interoperabilityIn order to facilitate a successful interface, the first thing to look for is that the system being used is on an open-source architecture. Here are some other key areas to focus on when engaging with and selecting an API interface engine vendor:

  • The prospective vendor should use an open architecture. Mirth Connect is one choice. It is one of the largest open source architecture platforms within the healthcare space. Mirth Connect provides the necessary tools for API interface vendors to develop, test, deploy and monitor an interface; and it has a large and active community of users. Whatever architecture is used, adaptability and flexibility are key to a successful interface.
  • Choose a developed API that can handle multiple EMRs. Even if you currently operate with a single EMR, at some point in the future you may want to add another software system, such as practice management or billing. This will require building an EMR interface. If the vendor you choose already handles multiple EMRs through its API, you know they will be ready should those changes occur. It’s important to keep in mind that each organization is unique in its structure, areas of specialty, personnel and workflow processes. Even if a vendor has not currently developed a specific API with your EMR, don’t eliminate them from your list. What matters is that they have experience successfully interfacing previous client spec requirements.
  • Select a combined EMR and patient portal that meets or preferably exceeds Meaningful Use attestation. For some organizations it’s all about meeting the minimal requirements in order to receive Meaningful Use funding. However, it is important to note that the Meaningful Use program is currently in its early stages, and attestation requirements could still be added or removed. For example, due to uncertainties regarding the likelihood of patient engagement, revisions could still be made to future requirements for Meaningful Use. Being on board with a vendor who is “ahead of the curve” will go a long way in saving future changes (and headaches) from being made to your system.

There is no question that open platforms within the health IT world are inevitable. When that becomes the common knowledge, the possibilities for improvement within the healthcare industry will be endless.

This article was originally published on the Medical Web Experts blog.

Blake joined Bridge Patient Portal in 2016 after transferring from our parent company Medical Web Experts. Since then, he’s acted as Bridge’s Business Development Manager. Blake is passionate about driving collaboration with clients, partners, and internal teams to achieve performance goals and successful relationships.