Six areas of care can be improved through the use of information technology, according to a report by the National Commission for Quality Long-Term Care recommending actions to optimize quality of life for the elderly population.
Hoping to more closely align long-term care with other segments of the healthcare industry, the commission, an independent organization overseen by the New School in New York, said in its report that healthcare IT can be used to enhance communication between caregivers and patients and improve education, financial incentives and reimbursement models.
"Technology in long-term care is much more fragmented than the rest of the healthcare system. Policymakers and federal healthcare purchasers must understand that the full integration of HIT into long-term care will affect all other healthcare sectors," the commission said in a statement.
The commission recommended enabling IT in six areas to benefit long-term care, saying IT would: transform communication and transparency, empower patients to be more active participants in their care, streamline workforces, improve the application of other technologies, generate timely, efficient reports for regulation requirements and align reimbursements and financial incentives with improved outcomes.