How can universities connect Student Health Services, Registrar’s Office, Athletic Departments and students to coordinate care? How can universities manage health conditions and chronic diseases, reduce the risk of individual illness and injury, assist students in embracing healthy lifestyle choices, and also improve health efficiency?
The answer lies partly within the electronic health records (EHR) solution, which can help providers drive the quality of care when treating students and student athletes. These systems provide a single longitudinal record for every student and can generate the analytics needed to conduct population-based assessments of health status and needs of the students. This information is essential in order to develop measurable goals and objectives for health promotion initiatives and evidence-based treatments of common and chronic conditions in addition to injuries.
Student Health Services
Colleges and universities are committed to the advancement of student health and the creation of healthy campus communities. Student health services strive to effectively manage health conditions and deliver paramount care. Numerous schools have already adopted EHRs, including:
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Campus Health Services covering more than 28,000 students;
- Oregon State University for 28,000 students;
- Northeastern University for its 20,000+ full-time undergraduate and graduate students;
- Indiana University Health Center for the more than 70,000 students on the Bloomington and Indianapolis campuses; and
- The recently announced Texas State University, which will also utilize a mobile health app for its more than 34,000 students.
The use of EHRs in college settings can also aid in treating student athletes. The system connects with radiology and labs systems, maintains physical exam notes, medication lists and video clips documenting a game injury. It allows trainers to electronically send prescriptions to the pharmacy, hold a workout regimen for rehabilitation, and aids trainers in comparing X-rays from previous injuries with new ones. This information is essential to develop measurable goals for health promotion initiatives as well as treatment plans for injuries and chronic conditions. The EHR gives trainers, physical therapists and physicians the best in evidence-based medicine using the device of their choice, including smartphones, laptops and tablets.
With 1 million patient encounters documented in the system every day, eClinicalWorks has been selected by the NFL and is used by NCAA Division 1 schools to deliver coordinated care to their students, Student Health Services, and the student’s regular primary care provider. Use of eClinicalWorks EHR technology with integrated analytics provides the data needed to institute the needed interventions before injuries occur. Enhanced functionality includes features designed specifically for Athletic Trainers and Physical Therapists who are called upon to develop injury prevention programs as well as treat injuries that occur on the field. Some of the enhancements include:
- Develop a problem-focused care plan;
- Use voice recording technology to convert speech to text for accurate, timely and complete clinical documentation; and
- View images and X-rays directly from within the EHR.
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