Louisiana creates campaign to educate residents about health IT

A new campaign by Louisiana has the goal of educating residents in the state about health information technology.

The D-T-C program will include a consumer advisory council, created by the Louisiana Health Care Quality Forum and the state's Department of Health and Hospitals, that will promote use of health IT among patients, including advocating for use of electronic health records and patient portals, according to Health Data Management.

Cindy Munn, CEO for the quality forum, said the 13-member council will help educate consumers on the tools, as well as do research on what patients need to be able to access the tools.

"When we started putting this together, it was a moment of tremendous excitement, but also a tad bit of fear," Jamie Martin, the forum's marketing and communications manager, told HDM. "No other organization has attempted to do this the way we're doing it in launching a statewide direct-to-consumer campaign. So there was no model for us to look at to see what worked and what didn't."

Funding for the program is through Medicaid, Munn added, but members will emphasize consumer HIT outreach no matter the health insurance provider.

Patient engagement is becoming more important in healthcare as the industry shifts from volume to value, and understanding what patients need when it comes to using and accessing their data is key to increasing that engagement.

However, while clinical patient engagement remains long on potential, it's still short on results, according to a report from Chilmark Research, FierceHealthIT previously reported. Healthcare organizations are still doing the bare minimum when it comes to digital efforts, between-visit or post-discharge interactions with patients, according to the report's authors.

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