Care Coordination — Creating the Network
Seeing multiple doctors for one ailment can be overwhelming, especially for the chronically ill — but for many patients it is necessary. The communication between healthcare entities is fundamental in treating patients, yet frequently does not happen.
As patients are referred to more specialists for treatment, they should become familiar with “care coordination”.
Care coordination is the organization of health services between doctors and other healthcare professionals involved in a patient’s care.
This organization and communication facilitate the delivery of the appropriate healthcare in the most efficient way.
Lack of care coordination can result in redundant testing, overlooked drug / disease interactions, and delayed diagnosis.¹ Studies have shown that patients with poorly coordinated care are likely to have more costly and lower-quality healthcare.
Participants in Care Coordination
Possible participants in care coordination can include:
- Acute care
- Primary care
- Specialty care
- Extended care
As the implementation of electronic health systems increases and patient satisfaction becomes more important, it becomes ever more vital for all parties involved in healthcare (patient, healthcare professional, and provider) to facilitate the flow of information and services through the spectrum of healthcare.
Care Coordination Benefits Everyone
As you investigate care coordination for yourself and your loved ones, keep in mind that care coordination is not only beneficial for the patient, but for healthcare entities and providers as well.
The more widely information is shared, the better the chances for a positive, healthy outcome, as well as better resources in the future.
¹ Kinder K, Pollack C, Lemke K, Starfield B. Care Coordination – How can we measure it?. International Journal of Integrated Care. 2016;16(6):A69. DOI: http://www.ijic.org/articles/abstract/10.5334/ijic.3035/
Resource for Care Coordination: for a list of ACOs (Accountable Care Organizations) for care coordination, see Medicare.gov
Shelby Kenney is an Associate Product Manager at Graham-Field.
About GF Health Products, Inc.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, with more than 300 US-based employees, GF Health Products, Inc. is a major manufacturer of healthcare products for the acute care, extended care, homecare and primary care markets. The Graham-Field family of brands includes Basic American Medical Products, Everest & Jennings, Grafco, Hausted, John Bunn, Labtron, Lumex and Lumiscope. Visit www.grahamfield.com or call 770-368-4700. Everest & Jennings, Graham-Field, and Traveler are trademarks of GF Health Products, Inc. © 2017, GF Health Products, Inc., all rights reserved.