Digitized 'passport' plan aims to improve doc-patient interaction

A Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center program to get patients more involved in their own care is getting a digital makeover, according to a report from Healthcare Informatics.

Dubbed "Passport to Trust," a BIDMC physician initially created the program as a way to improve in-office visits, according to Healthcare Informatics. It involved doctors creating written summaries of a patient's action plan, which the patient then could review and approve, allowing for care collaboration.

The digital version of the passport will help to improve patient engagement in between visits, according to Healthcare Informatics, and also will enable patients to share their information with multiple providers via an online platform created by Toronto-based NexJ Systems. It isn't expected go live, however, for at least another six months.

The platform, according to an announcement released earlier this month, will integrate with the hospital's electronic medical record system, allowing for real-time access to information.

Harvard Medical School professor Camilia Martin, M.D., who developed the electronic prototype for the system, told Healthcare Informatics that tracking systems that failed to involve a physician partially inspired her to work on the digital version of the passport.

"If I want to use that application on my device, who is looking at it?" she said. "Who is acting on that information? The physician isn't [in other systems] because they aren't equally armed with those systems to react to it."

BIDMC isn't the only hospital to test the idea of passports for patients. In December, FierceHealthcare reported on similar, non-digital efforts by 29 Philadelphia-area hospitals that ultimately led to the prevention of 400 unnecessary hospitalizations.

To learn more:
- read this Healthcare Informatics article
- here's the announcement