Stakeholder Specific Information

In order to implement real, comprehensive quality improvement programs in Pennsylvania it is important to keep stakeholders on all levels informed and involved. Everyone from consumers to IT vendors plays an important role in our efforts to enhance our health care delivery system in the Medical Assistance programs. Important information for each stakeholder can be found below. If you cannot find the information you are looking for, please contact us at RA-mahealthit@pa.gov.

Consumers

The Medical Assistance Health IT Initiative will have a huge impact on a consumer's experience in the health care system. This initiative is designed to empower the patient and provide them access to their own health care information. The initiative is also designed to improve communications between patients and providers allowing for easier follow up on recommended care, quick updates of new health status information and greater accountability for care for both the provider and the patient.

Some of the main features of the initiative include:

  • E-Prescribing which is aimed at reducing patient wait times at pharmacies and in decreasing adverse drug interactions
  • Electronic referrals streamline process and eliminate paper forms
  • Reduced need to provide medical information and history multiple times
  • Possible life saving medical information available in an emergency situation
  • Access information in their own electronic health record

Hospitals

Hospital and health system providers will find that the Medical Assistance Health IT Initiative will help in efforts to improve the quality of care and implement cost containment measures.

Improve Communication
This includes communications between health care providers and with patients.Features of this program include:

  • Increased ability to document communication with patients
  • Enhanced ability to outreach to patients regarding both preventative care and adherence to chronic care needs

E-Prescribing
This would allow providers to send prescriptions to pharmacies in electronic format. E-Prescribing will help to:

  • Reduce errors due to deciphering handwriting
  • Create and instant record of prescriptions to check for drug interactions
  • Reduce patients responsibility in obtaining prescriptions

Ordering Tests and Referrals
The initiative would allow providers the ability to order tests and send referrals electronically. This would benefits providers by: 

  • Reducing paperwork
  • Automating referrals to reduce administrative error
  • Expediting the process of returning results, which could also be sent electronically

In addition, implementing electronic health records and other forms of health IT will increase access to immediate decision support tools like clinical guidelines, reduce staff time spent on administrative tasks, reduce time spent charting patient information, and allow providers and health care facilities the ability to make back-up copies of a patients medical history in case of emergencies or natural disasters.