The impact of patient-centered care on clinical outcomes is well documented in the medical literature. As institutions across the country work to improve quality and patient satisfaction while reducing costs, at TIRR Memorial Hermann and through the Memorial Hermann Post-Acute Care Network we’re achieving all three outcomes.
We’re weaving an entire network of services into an integrated plan of care that follows patients regardless of their location, with medical information securely shared among providers. Physicians, acute care hospitals, rehabilitation professionals, skilled nursing facilities, home health and other providers work together to create a comprehensive, integrated experience for the people who trust us with their care.
At the same time, multiple efforts under way make it much easier for people to manage their own care, adding a new level of empowerment to the patient experience. Through the Memorial Hermann Patient Portal, they can view lab results and access their full medical records; Schedule Now allows consumers to make appointments with providers 24/7 at their convenience. We’ve taken it a step further to customize information delivery – some people want access through a phone app and others want to hear a voice. Our goal is to get information to patients in the format that works best for them.
Research done at TIRR Memorial Hermann has the same underlying objective: to empower people to be their own healthcare advocates. With funding from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), our investigators collaborated with other researchers across the country and a community advisory board of women with mobility impairments to create GoWoman, an effective Internet-based group weight-loss intervention program. A new study funded as part of our Texas Model Spinal Cord Injury System supported by NIDILRR, called “Zest: Promoting the Psychological Health of Women with SCI,” is the first-ever group intervention to address the specific psychological needs of women with SCI. The intervention will be delivered online through the 3-D virtual world of Second Life, a platform accessible to women around the country.
Making decisions based on input from our patients and consumers, empowering them to be their own advocates and reducing barriers to access is key to our rehabilitation mission. We’re in the process of launching even more community-based initiatives to improve access. In future issues of the journal, watch for articles about new ways in which we’re involving consumers in their care. The issues that are important to our patients are also important to us.
Carl E. Josehart
Chief Executive Officer
TIRR Memorial Hermann
System Executive for Rehabilitation Services
Memorial Hermann Health System