The contest calls on app developers to create a mobile tool to promote patient data access and empowerment.
Cerner Corporation is hosting a contest challenging health IT developers to create a mobile app that would promote patient data access regardless of EHR.
The 2019 code App Challenge will accept entries for patient-facing mobile apps that enable patient data access and empowerment, ideally through a single stream. Simply put, Cerner is looking for entries that help patients manage their own health using their mobile devices.
Cerner is requiring that entrants use advanced programming interfaces (APIs) in their proposals, thus allowing patients to access medical data in a single stream and creating a pseudo personal health record.
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These types of tools will be better suited for promoting patient-centricity and patient activation, Cerner suggests in its press release about the contest. Cerner’s patient portal has made significant headway in empowering patients with the information necessary for improving patient engagement, the EHR vendor said.
“We challenge innovators and organizations across the industry to join us in advancing interoperability, secure data exchange and consumer access to health records,” said John Gresham, senior vice president of Health Networks at Cerner. “People should be able to access and understand their own health information regardless of facility or EHR, which is why collaboration through open platforms and shared data is critical to our mission.”
Putting patient portal technology on a patient’s smartphone and including information from other EHRs and healthcare applications will further promote patient-centered care.
“Putting the person at the center of care by improving consumer access to medical information encourages active participation in health care,” Gresham added. “Embedding consumer-centric apps in the EHR can drive patient engagement, increase awareness of health care costs and improve overall health outcomes.”
This contest will be a part of the Cerner Open Development Experience (code) program, the vendor’s efforts to put third-party applications on a single platform off which patients and other end users can download them. The code App Gallery currently hosts 30 apps, which have been accessed by 53,000 different users.
This latest app contest will add to that library of tools, serving as a key platform off which a patient may access her own health information. Contest participants may enter an idea proposal, an app demo, or a project under any other stage of development, Cerner said. Working as a team or independently, developers must submit their entries by August 16, 2019.
These types of tools have begun to emerge on the healthcare technology market in an effort to overcome some of the central challenges associated with patient portal use. Data has shown that patient portals are not always actionable because they only contain patient data from one single EHR, and different tools are not always interoperable.
As of late, industry leaders have been focusing on freestanding personal health records that tie together those disparate data sources, giving patients a central location at which they can access their information, thus improving the patient experience of care.
Most notably, Apple has made its foray into the healthcare space developing such a tool. The Apple Health Records app – to which Cerner is a partner, alongside other major EHR vendors – promises seamless patient data access between different patient portals. The tool also integrates patient-generated health data and allows patients to transmit their medical records to authorized individuals.
Although the Apple Health Records app is only in its nascency, it has thus far received positive reviews from the medical industry. As time wears on and the tool begins to scale, experts predict they will gain a better idea of how well personal health records improve patient data access and empowerment.
This latest contest from Cerner serves as one of the first potentially competing efforts from a major EHR vendor, potentially creating more market pressure for innovation.
Date: June 21, 2019
Source: Patient Engagement HIT