US Oncology Announces iKnowMed(TM) Technology Platform

New platform enhances cancer care quality and practice efficiency

THE WOODLANDS, Texas, June 1 /PRNewswire/ -- US Oncology, Inc., the nation's leading integrated oncology company, today announced its new iKnowMed™ Technology Platform to support community oncologists nationwide.  This new platform enhances cancer care quality and practice efficiency through integrated, oncology-specific technologies that enable community oncologists to solve challenges in the areas of care delivery, drug management, and revenue cycle management.  


Today's oncology practices often have – or use – a wide array of technologies.  While each of the technologies in use in a practice may focus on and enhance components of cancer care, in most oncology practices, they are not integrated with other systems and do not realize information technology's potential to empower community oncologists with the comprehensive knowledge they need to care for cancer patients and run their practice.  This disintegrated, incomplete information results in missed opportunities to increase the overall quality of patient care, maximize practice productivity and lower practice operational costs. The iKnowMed Technology Platform enables oncologists to harness the power of technology to solve key challenges that impact quality of care and practice efficiency.

"Healthcare has lagged behind other industries in the use of information technology to enhance quality and efficiency," said Bruce Broussard, Chairman and CEO of US Oncology. "In oncology, we know that the smart application of enabling technology can help physicians improve care delivery, reduce errors, operate more efficiently, and expand access to proven life-saving therapies and cutting-edge research.  Our new iKnowMed Technology Platform brings together an integrated, comprehensive package that will allow community oncologists to lead healthcare into the 21st century."

The iKnowMed Technology Platform demonstrates US Oncology's focus on creating solutions to help oncologists improve a broad range of care delivery, drug management, and revenue cycle management processes within the community oncology practice setting.  US Oncology applied its deep clinical and business insight into community oncology to customize technology systems that deliver comprehensive oncology-specific content to support efficient practice workflow. These systems help physicians ensure patients receive treatments based on the best available evidence with point-of-care decision support, track and report on quality measures, optimize real-time inventory management to minimize working capital investment, improve first-time collections through enhanced billing and coding accuracy, increase accruals for clinical trials, as well as provide patients with innovative self service technologies.

Currently available within the iKnowMed Technology Platform are:

  • iKnowMed electronic health record (EHR) – a web-based cancer-specific electronic health record developed by oncologists to meet the unique needs of cancer patients and community oncologists
    • enables point of care decision support through diagnosis and tumor staging selection prompts and an oncology-specific regimen library including US Oncology's Level I Pathways
    • automates chemotherapy dosing, ordering and scheduling in the patient chart
    • streamlines charting and nursing documentation with patient information in a single screen view and creates a complete, concise audit trail
    • allows physicians to graphically view lab result trends
    • supports e-prescribing
    • harnesses rich clinical data through the iKnowMed Reporting Center
  • iKnowMed inventory management system– comprehensive inventory management system integrates with any EHR and practice management system (PMS) to manage all aspects of a community oncologist's pharmacy operations by combining dispensing, mixing, ordering, and receiving workflows for single or multisite environments into one user experience
    • enables dynamic par levels and auto-replenishment, lot tracking, and auto-receive
    • minimizes uncompensated waste through optimal vial utilization, saving up to 2% of drug expense
    • improves charge capture by as much as 10% through automated validation of drug ordered, drug mixed, drug administered and drug billed
    • reduces on-hand inventory by 10% or more through optimal drug ordering and stocking
  • iKnowMed revenue cycle management – web-based reimbursement tool that works alongside any practice management software to provide denial management reports, collection tools, and comparative benchmark metrics, designed to help practice staff to improve cash flow and practice performance
    • with real-time reports, practice staff is able to pinpoint problematic collection issues and eliminate the source
    • the web-based collections work-flow productivity tool assigns, organizes and prioritizes collections work flow, improving collections productivity
    • quarterly benchmark reports allow the practice to compare their collections data with national averages
    • equips practices to increase overall cash flow by reducing denials and strengthening contract negotiation position with improved visibility to payer denial rates, payment lag time and valuable benchmarking information

US Oncology will dramatically expand the iKnowMed Technology Platform over the next eighteen months to integrate proprietary and business partner systems including:

  • iKnowMed practice management system – a comprehensive oncology-specific practice management system that offers patient information, billing, integrated electronic data interchange (EDI) solutions, advanced reporting, oncology-specific scheduling rules, and much more all delivered securely through the Internet.
  • iKnowMed clinical trial management system (CTMS) – a proven, web-based electronic database designed specifically for oncology. CTMS streamlines research processes by housing all trial information, documents, tools, and reports in one location. Research operations can also improve by providing relevant training resources for research staff.  CTMS is currently available to physicians participating in the US Oncology Research network and will be integrated into the iKnowMed technology platform and the iKnowMed EHR to enhance a practice's ability to offer clinical trials to more patients, more efficiently.
  • iKnowMed patient portal – integrates directly with the iKnowMed EHR to allow patients the ability to access a personal health record (PHR) for information about their pertinent clinical status and survivorship. It also integrates with any practice management system to provide many self–service features such as secure messaging, on-line bill pay, pre-registration, and appointment requests from anywhere via the web. Additionally, the patient portal can provide key resources that help patients find clinical trials, receive personalized education material, manage side effects, and seek sources for financial assistance.
  • iKnowMed physician portal – provides physicians with an almost limitless dashboard of key practice business and clinical metrics and information, including, patient schedule, ability to view secure messaging, work queues, quality performance measures, patient satisfaction scores, and practice business metrics such as accounts receivable, days sales outstanding, and denial metrics from any computer or mobile device. 
  • iKnowMed infusion management system – safety can also be increased through the use of US Oncology's infusion device with dose calculation software that will integrate with the iKnowMed EHR and the iKnowMed inventory management system. This drug delivery product provides automatic electronic verification of drug, dose, rate, administering nurse, and patient, ensuring that the right drug and dose is given to the right patient every time and that the charges are appropriately captured.
  • iKnowMed operating system – enables the delivery of US Oncology's many services including: iKnowMed revenue cycle management, Level I Pathways compliance and reporting, access to physician and patient portals, and clinical trial support from the Comprehensive Accrual REsource (CARE) regardless of the practice's installed EHR, PMS, or lab information system (LIS).

US Oncology is committed to continuing to evolve and improve each of these systems as community oncology evolves, with a constant focus on enhancing quality of care and practice efficiency by bringing to bear its unique oncology knowledge and expertise.

Physicians and practice administrators interested in learning more about the iKnowMed™ Technology Platform and the United Network of US Oncology may contact US Oncology at 866-216-5053 or email [email protected].

About US Oncology

US Oncology, Inc. is the nation's leading integrated oncology company. By uniting the largest community-based cancer treatment and research network in America, US Oncology expands patient access to high-quality care and advances the science of cancer care. Headquartered in The Woodlands, Texas, US Oncology is affiliated with more than 1,300 community-based oncologists and works with patients, hospitals, payers, and the medical industry across all phases of the cancer research and delivery continuum. By promoting the use of innovative technology, clinical research, evidence-based medicine and shared best practices, US Oncology improves patient outcomes and offers a better patient experience.

US Oncology powers the smart application of enabling technology for the nation's largest network of community-based oncology physicians and community oncologists nationwide through the iKnowMed™ Technology Platform.  Acquired by US Oncology in 2004, the iKnowMed™ electronic health record is actively used by more than 900 community-based oncologists and thousands of staff.  Built on the foundation of the iKnowMed™ EHR, the iKnowMed™ Technology Platform integrates oncology-specific inventory management, revenue cycle management, and physician collaboration to allow community oncologists to harness the potential of technology to transform cancer care delivery and practice efficiency.

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SOURCE US Oncology, Inc.