The pMD Blog

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pMD Blog...

where we cover interesting and relevant news, insights, events, and more related to the health care industry and pMD. Most importantly, this blog is a fun, engaging way to learn about developments in an ever-changing field that is heavily influenced by technology.

pMD care coordination tool

The switch from traditional fee-for-service to the new, value-based care model has been slowly taking shape in health care, leaving practices to figure out how to stay ahead of the changes without taking significant hits to their practice. Specialized care involves referrals from different providers and transitions of care between facilities, which can create gaps in the patient’s care. The average patient over 65 years old sees more than 28 providers! So how will practices successfully coordinate care as patients move between multiple care settings and providers in this new world of reimbursement?

I’ll give you a hint: it doesn’t start with EHRs. EHRs were not designed for care teams to manage patients across multiple transitions of care and enhance the provider-patient relationship. And many EHRs are still resistant to work with external systems, not to mention that about one-fifth of practices are still using paper records. Practices that do have EHRs still revert to paper-based systems when they see patients outside the four walls of their clinic. Whether a physician is rounding at the hospital with a paper printout, or a nurse navigator is using a paper report to track patients, paper isn’t doing the caregiver or the patient any favors. Health information that can save a patient from duplicate procedures, improve the quality of care, or even save a patient’s life, is spread out across different pieces of paper.

Care coordination tools are emerging to fill these transitional gaps in the patient’s care and prevent avoidable readmissions. pMD’s care coordination tool allows caregivers to manage their patients in a more effective way to improve health outcomes, especially for patients with chronic conditions and who are part of a bundled payment or other risk sharing program. Caregivers can record progress notes, manage care plans, add personalized information about their patients, and run robust reports to get ahead of diseases before they require expensive treatments. pMD also connects the care team to the local medical community by allowing caregivers to invite others to the secure texting platform and create an easy-to-access, secure network.

The value-based care model is opening up new opportunities for creative solutions to improve quality of care and reduce health care costs, and pMD is happily taking on the challenge.

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, and care coordination software and services, please contact pMD.

Image: Jim Bourg/Reuters

Here's The Latest in Health Care:

•  Pfizer is under fire this week by the Food and Drug Administration for failing to properly investigate malfunctioning reports surrounding their EpiPens. Patients have died when the device failed to work. The company reportedly received numerous complaints about problems with the activating device, yet did not conduct a proper investigation.  Read More

•  The American Medical Association (AMA) is calling on congress to come up with alternatives to the reversal of the Deferred Action for Childhood Association (DACA) that will not hinder the health care workforce. On Tuesday, the president announced the decision to end DACA, which protects about 800,000 immigrants, in six months. The AMA is concerned that this reversal could impact patients and the nation's health care system by affecting the health care and tech workforce.  Read More

•  For parents who oppose vaccinations, or anti-vaxxers as they're often known, the personal belief exemption is not recognized in some states. In California, Mississippi, and West Virginia - states that only allow exemptions based on medical concerns - a growing number of families are seeking medical exemptions to get around new state laws requiring vaccinations regardless of religious beliefs.  Read More

•  In a recent health poll, participants divulged their motivations to discontinue taking a prescribed drug. Many reported bad side effects and others responded that cost is a factor. It's important to speak with your health care provider prior to stopping a drug that's been prescribed.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

There’s very little I like more than learning new things, a chance to socialize, and (most importantly) free food. If that statement resonates with you, then I highly suggest you attend the next conference in your area!

We, at pMD, are avid conference goers and truly appreciate the value that they bring. Conferences have a multitude of benefits for both the attendees and the exhibitors.  They are more than just a gathering of doctors, administrators, CFOs, or staff. They are a place to share all that is new and exciting in the field.

I’ve attended two conferences so far this year: GI Roundtable in Forth Worth, Texas and GI Outlook in Hollywood, California. Why they keep sending me to gastroenterology conferences, I can’t tell you but I sure do know more about colonoscopies than I ever thought I’d need to know! I’ve found that conferences provide a higher ROI than some of the more traditional marketing methods because there is tremendous value in meeting face-to-face.

Benefits of conferences are twofold for us at pMD. As well as being able to meet with current pMD customers in attendance, we also get the opportunity to market our product to potential customers. Let’s talk through both of these in a little more detail.

If you’ve read any of our previous posts about pMD traveling, such as travel by the numbers or travel tips, you know that pMDers have no problem jet-setting around the country for our customers. What’s even better is having our customers come to us! That’s what conferences are like. We typically have more than a handful of pMD users attending every conference. We have pMD customers in 35 different states, which means that there’s a 70% chance that we’ll have a resident customer at a conference in any given state. I like our odds. Conferences are a great opportunity for us to get valuable customer feedback, all in one place, and all in a day or two! Talk about efficiency.

Additionally, another added benefit of attending or sponsoring a conference is exposure. As an exhibitor, you bring a fancy tablecloth, a showy backdrop, and maybe some branded hand sanitizer, candy, and pens. You sponsor the ads in the syllabus, pay for the best booth placement possible, and cross your fingers that it all pays off! Well, we would like to extend a warm thank you to our aforementioned customers for making our jobs as exhibitors just a tad bit easier. Nothing markets better than word of mouth, so the best possible thing we could ask for at a conference is that our customers speak highly of our product. With over 700 reviews on pMD to date, it’s no wonder we’ve had an influx of referrals coming toward our booth! We love spreading the word to potential customers about how great pMD is and conferences are a wonderful opportunity to do just that.

Conferences are an invaluable resource to companies. pMD takes pride in owning a product that people are happy to talk about and there’s no better place to share our product than among health care professionals that could benefit from its usage!

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, and care coordination software and services, please contact pMD.

Here's The Latest in Health Care:

•  In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, Houston health systems were able to access medical records thanks to a robust IT infrastructure, EHR adoption and HIE agreements. These health systems set up makeshift virtual clinics in evacuation centers across Houston, allowing providers to connect to medical records, order medications and input patient data.  Read More

•  Specialists oversee the care of the most costly and sickest patients in the nation and therefore are increasingly responsible for driving the value-based care model. Some suggested strategies to deliver more effective care and consumer engagement, which may become requirements in the future, include having specialty practices invest in insight platforms and advanced analytics. These technologies are not yet widely adopted in health care but are important in the future success of delivering value-based care.  Read More

•  Medicare patients beware: you can be hospitalized for several days, can undergo exams and tests, and can receive medications without ever officially being admitted to the hospital. What does that mean for you as a patient? This technically means you're "under observation" and considered an outpatient versus an inpatient, which may deny coverage for subsequent nursing home care.  Read More

•  The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on Wednesday its first approval of a cell-based gene therapy in the U.S. The treatment, known as CAR-T cell therapy, will involve removing immune system T cells from each patient and genetically modifying the cells in the lab to attack and kill leukemia cells.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

Product feedback connects us directly to our customers and helps us to develop products which best serve their needs. Product feedback also provides valuable insight into our customers’ current pain points as well as their vision for the future. This feedback helps pMD to continue to expand our product while also aligning closely with the goals of our customers. Below are a few key ways in which pMD works to ensure that product feedback is collected, prioritized, and action is taken!

Promote a culture where employees are customer-facing and always listening for feedback:

Here at pMD, we love to visit our customers. In a recent blog post by my colleague Chris, he discussed some of the great benefits experienced by visiting our customers on site. At pMD, every team member is always open and eager to hear customer feedback. We enjoy traveling to visit our customers because this allows us to meet face-to-face, discuss our product, and learn new ways in which we can help. Each team member is trained on the 5 Whys methodology of gathering product feedback. This practice helps us to understand the root of the customer’s request and what product gaps or desired product enhancements the feedback is reflecting.

Organize product feedback thoughtfully and strategically:

We love to use our own software internally as this allows us to test first-hand how the product is performing. As you might now be guessing, we also use pMD to track and organize our product feedback. Each piece of feedback is carefully analyzed and assessed. Once the feedback is fully vetted, we document and categorize the feedback based on helpful criteria. For example, we tag each feedback request based on categories such as “Product Feature” and "Project Size”. This allows us to easily report all of the feedback we receive and detect certain trends and patterns.

Act on product feedback and close the feedback loop accordingly:

When a customer takes the time to share their valuable feedback, we want to be sure that action is taken. As described above, we document product feedback in a way that allows us to easily analyze patterns as well as pinpoint specific requests. With this data, we are then able to take meaningful action. Based on product feedback, we often pivot our product roadmap or perhaps add a new feature to the list of enhancements we want to build.

Product feedback is also a very beneficial tool for our development team as we define the scope of any new feature. We never want to build a feature based on our assumptions. It is much more valuable to receive direct customer feedback throughout each stage of the feature development lifecycle to ensure we are on the right track. Customer feedback is a critical part of our agile workflow and our customers’ input is fundamental to our success as we develop new features and product enhancements. Additionally, as a final step to this feedback loop, we then communicate these new features out to our customers to ensure that the developed feature is meeting expectations.

We hear you:

Your product feedback is vital in helping us to move our products forward and build the best possible solutions. Product feedback is essential in driving what features we develop, when we develop them, and how they are developed. We document and curate this feedback in a way that is thoughtful, organized, and allows us to define patterns, trends, and also any urgent bugs which might need to be addressed. With this, we are able to maintain a product roadmap that ensures our customers’ needs and goals are our top priority. We are incredibly grateful for all of your amazing feedback. Please continue to share your ideas with us. You are the essential piece to making pMD the amazing product it is!

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, and care coordination software and services, please contact pMD.

Image: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Here's The Latest in Health Care:

•  A new technique called "genome cloaking" allows researchers to access specific gene mutations while still keeping the patient's private genetic information protected. Researchers from Stanford University developed this method, which uses cryptography to hide genetic information, to protect patients' privacy while doctors perform genetic analyses.  Read More

•  While wearables remain a popular tech purchase, actual ongoing user engagement and evidence proving the health benefits still continues to be a challenge. Researchers are still trying to find ways to integrate wearables into health care, specifically with patient care.  Read More

•  Johnson & Johnson paid $417 million in damages to Eva Echeverria of East Lost Angeles, who developed ovarian cancer after using the company's baby powder product for decades. Numerous studies have linked talcum powder use with ovarian cancer but the findings have not been consistent. This may be the largest award so far among lawsuits tying ovarian cancer to talcum powder.  Read More

•  Didn't heed the protective eye-cover warnings during Monday's Great American Eclipse? Chances are, your quick glances may not have caused permanent, long-term damage to your eyes. However, it takes at least 12 hours before knowing if anything has happened. If your vision seems blurry or you're seeing spots, make an appointment with your optometrist to further assess any damage to your eyes.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.

At pMD, the role of an Account Executive (AE) is very exciting! If you’ve kept up with our blog, or have interacted with our team members, you know that travel is essential to our company. We are rarely ever confined to a cubicle. Often, you can find our team scattered across the U.S. and at times attending several meetings in different cities and different time zones within a 24-hour period! While a lot of this travel is focused on our current customers, there is a large need for us to travel to prospective customers as well.

pMD AEs take a different approach to sales. We spend a great deal of time understanding the prospective customer’s current workflow and assessing whether any one of our suite of products would be a good fit for them. At pMD, you learn to ask a lot of questions and the logic behind that is intentional. Our product is by no means one-size-fits-all and is all very customizable. For example, a cardiology group in Southern California may use our Charge Capture product very differently than another cardiology group in Northern California. So, asking a multitude of questions is imperative to learning more about your potential customer and how pMD can be customized for them.

Since 1998, our team has prioritized travel and has witnessed the positive impact first-hand. A solid face-to-face meeting is invaluable when comparing to a 30-minute phone conversation. I’ve personally experienced the benefits of in-person meetings and can attest that traveling to prospective customers helps to build trust, inspire positive conversations, and ultimately build strong(er) relationships. While you’re on the road, it’s important that you’re maximizing that face-to-face time.

Traveling should never feel like a burden. At times, it can be exhausting and time-consuming but only if you allow it to be. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to make your future travel escapades more comfortable, more efficient, and ultimately more rewarding!

I’ve personally found that these tips promote a more efficient way to travel, which saves you time and keeps you sane! What can you do with more time? It provides you the opportunity to visit more prospective customers and spend quality time listening to their needs. If you build a relationship and develop trust with prospective customers early on, they will ideally become happy, new customers! Happy, new customers translate to a happy pMD team! If you have any questions or would like to find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, and care coordination software and services, please contact pMD.

Image: Getty Images

Here's The Latest in Health Care:

•  Drug prices for multiple sclerosis continue to soar as pharmaceutical companies compete with one another for higher prices. In response, House Democrats have started an in-depth investigation, which includes the probing of 7 major drugmakers' pricing strategies.  Read More

•  Want to learn a new language but having difficulty retaining what you've learned? Try hopping on a workout bike or walking on a treadmill while memorizing vocabulary. Researchers have found that working out during language instruction increases your ability to memorize, retain and understand new vocabulary.  Read More

•  A new Executive Order, called "Strengthening the Cybersecurity of Federal Networks and Critical Infrastructure," requires federal agencies to report on and outline mitigation strategies for cyber risks. The deadline for the required reporting is this month. Some agencies anticipate falling behind due to unexpected budget requirements to meet the EO deadline.  Read More

•  Each year, more than 600,000 babies die of blood infections. Scientists have discovered an inexpensive treatment to prevent newborn sepsis. The secret weapon? Probiotic bacteria commonly found in foods like kimchi, pickles and other fermented vegetables.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.
Earlier this month on August 1st, Apple released their highly anticipated third quarter earnings. In the report, Apple boasted its third straight quarter of year-over-year accelerated growth in revenue and beat analyst predictions of earnings per share. Apple was on a roll, having sold 41 million iPhones during the quarter and driving Apple’s Services division to a record high.

pMD’s users, which include physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and support staff, tend to heavily favor Apple devices. While there is usually a noticeable fluctuation among our iOS and Android device breakdown from quarter to quarter, usage among our customers’ Android and iOS devices this quarter remain unchanged from the last. Stagnant? Perhaps. Compelling? Absolutely. With a plethora of new Android devices released last quarter, that may have been enough to entice pMD Android users from slipping away to the competition's territory. Correspondingly, Apple loyalists stood firm. Are they possibly awaiting the highly anticipated release of the iPhone 8?

iOS vs. Android:

Looking at the breakdown of pMD’s iPhone usage by model, 7.2% of users upgraded their devices to the iPhone 7 / 7 Plus and iPhone 6S owners grew by a slim 1% margin. The iPhone 6 saw a decrease in overall users, so we can infer that users likely updated to the 6S or 7 models. Users are slowly saying goodbye to older models of the iPhone and saying hello to the new, sleeker models.

iPhone By Model:

It's a positive outlook for Apple next quarter. With the release of the iPhone 8 coming this fall, we can bet that Tim Cook's Q4 earnings announcement will be nothing short of enthusiastic.

Image: Eugenia Sanz

Here's The Latest in Health Care:

•  A recent observational study in Obstetrics & Gynecology suggested that women who suffer from sleep problems have a higher risk of giving birth prematurely than women without sleep disorders. Women with insomnia had a 30 percent increased risk and those with sleep apnea had a 40 percent increased risk of preterm birth.  Read More

•  The president declared Thursday that the opioid crisis is indeed a national emergency. States and federal agencies will be provided with more resources and power to combat the epidemic, according the President.  Read More

•  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Maradol papayas imported from Mexico should be avoided by U.S. consumers. Salmonella has been linked to the papayas and has sickened over 100 people nationwide. Symptoms typically appear 12-72 hours after exposure and can include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps.  Read More

•  Are health care organizations prepared for the inevitable Ransomware 2.0 attacks? The next wave of attacks will likely target medical devices and Internet of Things, which historically lack sufficient protections against malware. Compliance experts recommend a tight coupling of information technology, information security, and biomedical personnel to ensure medical devices are part of any incident response plan.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture software.