In a recent press release, we announced that we will be offering our medication management software, Meds 360°, for free until the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak has been contained and the threat has subsided. In this blog post, we will discuss exactly what that means and why it is necessary.
Back when Cureatr was founded in 2012, we set out to provide solutions and services that connect, not divide; support that simplifies, not complicates; and healthcare that is safer, smarter and works better for hospitals, clinicians, and most importantly, patients. In recent weeks, the spread of COVID-19 has become a global pandemic with all reports from the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control indicating that cases of COVID-19 are likely to grow in the United States, including more instances of community spread, and widespread transmission of COVID-19 and put enormous strain on the healthcare system.
To do our part, we recently announced that we will be offering open access to our medication management software, Meds 360°, free of cost, to all qualified hospitals, health systems, and provider organizations on the front lines of COVID-19 care, while capacity lasts. We wanted to explain the primary use cases for Meds 360° in this fight, what a “qualified” health care provider organization is, and why we don’t have unlimited capacity (yet).
Two Broad Aims for Meds 360° during the COVID-19 pandemic
There are two ways that medication management can help on the front lines. The first is in improving the direct treatment of COVID-19 patients by enhancing both in-person and telephonic care delivery with efficiency and accuracy around medication reconciliation. The second is in keeping non-COVID-19 patients as far away from acute facilities as possible. Since 15% of hospital admissions on average are medication-related and COVID-19 patients are typically older and taking more drugs, optimizing medication regimens should be a proactive activity done by care management and population teams nationwide. Here are specific ways to use Meds 360° for either of these broad aims.
Specific Ways to Use Meds 360° during the COVID-19 pandemic
1. Improve throughput and shorten triage and admission processes through improved medication safety.
For patients that arrive at the ED, the real-time medication fill data in Meds 360° available at the time of triage will enhance the accuracy and efficiency of medication reconciliation for overburdened emergency department admissions staff. This data is presented clearly, in a timeline, grouped by therapeutic category to draw the providers’ eyes to therapeutic interchange, duplication, and potential peril. Pill images enable the provider to get faster confirmation from patients about what they’re taking. Each medication is traced to prescriber and pharmacy to shorten the time or remove the need to make phone calls, removing the burden on these other providers. You’re left with a highly efficient process and an accurate medication reconciliation that lowers lengths of stay.
Check out this infographic for an example of how this works.
2. Enable remote post-discharge medication reconciliation
Using the same capabilities and a telephone, keep your discharged patients away from acute and primary care settings whenever possible. Use of Meds 360° in any telemedicine context enhances your patient interactions around getting the meds right, but is even more critical now.
3. Reduce non-COVID-19 medication-related hospital utilization
Because older patients, those with a chronic disease, and those on several medications are at a higher risk of hospitalization in general and contracting COVID-19 more specifically, Cureatr can scan a population and provide a risk assessment using the Meds 360° for Populations Dashboard. This tool:
- identifies drug therapy problems and supports proactive recommendations for optimal medication management
- supports refill and renewal activities to avoid therapy gaps
- highlights patients at high-risk to experience more severe COVID-19 disease based on their medication profile, medical history, and demographics
- pinpoints patients facing drug shortages so they can be switched to more available alternative and avoid medication therapy gaps
The comprehensive, intuitive, medication history data provided in Meds 360° can help you more efficiently keep patients away from acute care taking care of potential risks before patients are admitted to the ED, freeing up beds for COVID-19 patients.
Who Gets to Use Meds 360° Open Access and How?
Any healthcare organization that is providing front-line care to COVID-19 patients or playing a front-line role in stepping up population health efforts to reduce the risk that non-COVID-19 patients will have acute events are eligible. Meds 360° is a secure, HIPAA-compliant software application that can be used both on computers and mobile phones. Provisioning is easy once your organization enters into an agreement with Cureatr to use it. Organizations in need typically take 2-5 days to get up and running with little or no IT involvement necessary. To get started, send an email to email@example.com.
Why Are There Capacity Limitations?
Unfortunately, we don’t have unlimited capacity to offer Meds 360° for free at this time. This is due to the per-patient transaction costs we have to pay to members of our real-time data network, which would ultimately overwhelm us. We are working with our data providers to temporarily lower or suspend their fees to us so that we can remove all restrictions on use. Until and unless that happens, we will be providing Meds 360° open access to organizations on a first-come-first-serve basis, to the limit of our resources.
All organizations, both big and small, are stepping up during this unprecedented time and we feel that it our duty to do our part. Providing the basic human right of health and happiness to all is a cornerstone of our mission and by offering our expertise, resources, and technology to care providers free of cost, we can empower healthcare providers to produce a sustained response to the growing pandemic by reducing unnecessary medication-related visits to hospitals and physicians’ offices. Any hospitals, health systems, and provider organizations interested in our assistance during this time can request access via this form or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will also be hosting a webinar detailing the specifics of this free offer and answering any questions interested healthcare providers may have. You can register for it here. If you can’t attend the live session we will be sharing the recording.