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Health Interoperability and Beyond: A Journey Through Fragmented Healthcare Systems

Is fragmented care putting your loved ones at risk? Discover how lack of continuity and outdated systems create critical gaps, how the industry is evolving toward patient-centered care, and the role of technology in bridging these gaps. Clinovera offers innovative solutions to ensure a smooth transition from ICU to rehab and beyond.
Health Interoperability and Beyond: My Father's Journey Through Fragmented Healthcare Systems
Published on
March 14, 2024

Health Interoperability and Beyond: A Journey Through Fragmented Healthcare Systems

A few years ago, my father was involved in a terrible car accident and spent months at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston, mostly in the ICU. His fight for survival seemed insurmountable, but thanks to the exceptional care he received, he defied the odds and made a near-complete recovery. Witnessing the ICU nurses utilize the very healthcare technology systems I helped develop was a deeply rewarding experience.

From ICU to Rehab: Uncovering the Challenges of Care Continuity

After spending almost 2 months at MGH, my father was discharged to a respectable rehab. This is where troubles started. He was sent to rehab with physical discharge documentation on paper. Almost immediately, some of the documentation was lost, and his medication list had disappeared. I had to call MGH Medical Records numerous times, and they eventually FAXED the med list. Due to the paper records, his physician made a mistake reconciling his discharge meds. Fortunately, I noticed it. My careful monitoring unearthed several other critical issues that could have been fatal for a very frail, elderly man recently surviving a highly complex medical episode.

Despite a successful hospital treatment, I've been grappling with why my dad almost died in rehab. I am a very experienced HealthTech executive who spends lots of time with clinicians and at care facilities. Understanding and resolving issues the way I could have would have been challenging for most people. As a technologist, my initial instinct was to blame the lack of interoperability between systems. However, in most cases, modern healthcare EHRs are capable of robust integration. After all, at Clinovera, we routinely implement complex workflows that connect disparate systems across organizations.

The Larger Issue: Healthcare System Fragmentation

My experience suggests the problem lies deeper than just interoperability. Traditional healthcare processes and practices lack built-in continuity of care. Each facility treats a patient encounter as separate, with little regard for the overall journey. This fragmentation exists on both operational and technological levels. Value-based care promises to address this very issue, but widespread adoption seems slow. This lack of continuity likely played a significant role in the challenges my dad faced after his successful hospital treatment. 

Fortunately, change is in the air. There is a growing emphasis on patient-centric pathways, and integrated care, especially for the older population, with a significant focus on collaborative care that spans across specialties and care domains. The healthcare system is undergoing a transformative revolution, driven by a powerful partnership between healthcare organizations and health tech innovators. These innovators are developing cutting-edge products and solutions that are fundamentally changing how we approach patient care.

Sooner or later, most of us will reach a point when healthcare becomes a major aspect of our lives. I am hopeful that our system of care will continue to evolve to the point when boundaries will fall, and we will be treated by this system not as discrete objects of care by each individual institution or specialty but holistically - as humans.    

Join Us in Shaping a Better Healthcare Future

At Clinovera, we're at the forefront of healthcare innovation, crafting solutions that bridge gaps and enhance patient care. If you're ready to transform, we're here to help. Our team of HealthTech experts specializes in integrating technology seamlessly into healthcare processes, ensuring your journey toward improvement is smooth and effective. Contact us today, and let's make a significant, positive change together.     

Authored by Anatoly Postilnik, Managing Director.

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