Dec 28

Why do we need person centred care?


All stakeholders in health are in agreement that improving individual’s health and well-being, preventing the need for healthcare services and optimizing healthcare delivery when needed requires a holistic approach and a move away from the traditional sickness episodic models of care to person centred care. Medical institutions are building patient satisfaction and a successful patient experience as seen by the rise of Chief Experience Officers employed in healthcare. On the other side there is also the trialling of new models of care especially for end of life care. Both which require technology to be effective.


3 core elements of person centred care

  • Enables the person to be involved in their care and optimize their wellness
  • Care is personalized for individual people
  • Optimizes a person’s journey through the healthcare system. The biggest complaint with the current healthcare system is not about the treatment that is provided/ received but more how the care was coordinated and the hassle and inconvenience of it all

3 challenges for person centred care

  • Privacy and security – have a mechanism that ensures the security of the person’s health record while allowing the flexibility of who can read or write to that record
  • Requires a different model of care, funding and technology to support it, needs to start and end with the person’s needs, involvement and cross different providers and enterprises.
  • Needs to support and address the issues of genomic data to truly support personalized medicine

Pulling the above together means thinking about and validating, with individuals, what they want to know and how best to support them. Simple, effective, and non-promotional communication.

Additionally learning from others and recognising people for their person centric efforts is essential. Cleveland Clinic has long been recognized for driving some of the best clinical outcomes in the USA, but it was not always a leader in patient experience. There was a time when this revered organization ranked among the lowest in the country in this area. Within ten years, however, it had climbed to among the highest and has emerged as the thought leader in the space. Much of this change is underpinned with technology.

Another successful model is Sutter Health’s Advanced Illness Management (AIM) program for patients with late-stage chronic illnesses, funded by a CMS Health Care Innovation Award. Located in northern California, Sutter Health has implemented a complex medical home model that provides patients with RN home visits, telehealth support, and coordination of care providers through the individual’s primary care doctor. The preliminary analysis shows a 59% reduction in hospitalizations and a 67% reduction in ICU days among patients within 90 days of enrolling in AIM, putting the program on track to exceed its goal of $29 million in Medicare savings. However they did have issues with eHealth. The lack of electronic interoperability among Sutter hospitals and affiliated physician practices has been both a challenge and an opportunity. They reported that “ensuring that the AIM team notes are electronically available to hospitals and physicians is easier said than done. “We are dual documenting in multiple EHR systems and, when we can’t do that, we’re faxing.” Sutter Health is now committed to improving data analytic capabilities to uncover targeted information that would help in better managing the AIM population.

People want the Healthcare market to become person centred.  They want to be able to select the options that work for them: different models of care; the mix of conventional and non-conventional therapies like eastern medicines and mediation; and the technology they need to bridge that gap including Dr Google. The eHealth industry must prepare and support person centred care even without funding models currently available to support the transition or they will be left behind with other obsolete technologies like the “the fax machine”.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>