Urgent Care facilities are used by patients when the patient’s usual healthcare providers are not available and they are in need of urgent care but not necessarily the acute care of a hospital’s Emergency department. Many times if the patient does not have a primary care physician, Urgent Care facilities are used as the primary care giver for healthcare services. For this reason, Urgent Care organizations benefit from accessing the HIE and other HealtheConnections’ services as both an as-needed and primary healthcare provider.
Jack Kelly is a 28-year old male that plays baseball in a local recreational league. During an out-of- town game, while running between bases, Jack tripped and fell landing on his left wrist. Unable to move his fingers or wrist without severe sharp pain, Jack knew that he needed to have the arm examined. The umpire asked if he wanted someone to call 911 but his friend offered to take him to a nearby Urgent Care by personal vehicle for an x-ray. On arrival the triage nurse asked Jack about his past medical history and what medications he took. The Nurse Practitioner then examined his arm and orders an x-ray. Jack’s arm turns out to be severely sprained so he is prescribed pain medication, the arm is splinted and he is sent on his way.
How HealtheConnections Services Can Help:
Upon arriving at the Urgent Care, the registration clerk presents Jack with a consent form to give them permission to view Jack’s records that are available in the health information exchange. With the consent in place, the triage nurse is able to easily download a copy of Jack’s medications into her EMR using Patient Lookup, as well as help her to fill in some of the details that are unclear to Jack regarding his own health history, including his allergy to acetaminophen. Jack is brought into the radiology suite where an x-ray is performed and as soon as it is read by the radiologist at the Urgent Care’s other location across town, the result comes back directly into the Urgent Care’s EMR that is connected to the HIE. From the holding tank, the Nurse Practitioner is able to view the radiologist’s report as well as look at the attached image on her tablet computer in the exam room with Jack. She is able to show him that while he has pain and swelling, he does not have a fracture. With luck he will be back on the field in a few weeks just in time for the playoffs. She writes a prescription for pain medicine that is sent to the pharmacy near Jack’s house. Before discharging Jack, the nurse is able to send a copy of Jack’s encounter to his primary care provider securely with Direct Mail for follow up.
For these types of healthcare providers, the HealtheConnections features most often used by others in this field are:
- Patient Lookup
- Urgent Care providers can access a patient’s comprehensive electronic medical record to view their medical history
- Registration and billing staff can view a patient’s most currently reported insurance information
- Direct Mail
- Urgent Care providers can quickly and easily communicate with a patient’s primary care physician, specialist, or with emergency department doctors regarding the patient’s transition of care
- Query-Based Exchange
- Healthcare providers can access state and federal systems and other external partners to view patient data