Patent number 8799006 is assigned to
The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "The present invention relates generally to the field of computer software. More particularly, the present invention relates to a computerized system and methods for distributed analysis of records of a patient population in view of certain clinical knowledge.
"Standardized medical or healthcare knowledge ('clinical knowledge') has traditionally been introduced to clinicians in a number of different ways. For instance, a clinician may participate in health-related degree programs at colleges or universities, or attend healthcare seminars, to gain clinical knowledge. Clinicians may also review a wide variety of information sources for clinician knowledge, such as professional journals, reference books and guides, and government agency notices. Uniform and widespread dissemination of portions of clinical knowledge over a large number of clinicians, however, can be quite difficult. For one thing, clinicians do not all consult the same sources for clinical knowledge. Moreover, time and resource constraints often force many practicing clinicians to simply conduct a cursory review of the sources relevant to their practice. Therefore, as new standards of care and related knowledge are accepted in the healthcare community, there is a problem with integrating this information into the practice habits of clinicians so that patients receive the highest level of care.
"One method of improving the dissemination and review of healthcare-related information representing clinical knowledge is for clinicians to automatically receive such information through electronic updates. These updates may be delivered by enrolling with, for example, a listserv or other automated emailing list, enabling a large number of clinicians to receive the healthcare-related information with minimal effort. Even with the convenience and ease of these types of information distribution methods, however, a given clinician may not be capable of reviewing and retaining all of the clinical knowledge received over a given period of time. Furthermore, such a clinician may not have a manageable and efficient way to relate the information to a plan of care for each patient for whom the clinician provides healthcare services. To illustrate, suppose that a clinician employs an assistant or other clinician to review sources of new healthcare knowledge and pull all patient records to determine if the information has relevance to any particular patient's plan of care. Such a scheme would, unfortunately, be very time consuming, and open to human error due to the subjective interpretations of the assistant. In some instances, it may be impossible to discover and contact all of the patients that may be at risk in view of the clinical knowledge. One example would be when clinical knowledge includes an alert about a specific chronic health crisis such as new knowledge that a particular medication is inappropriate when administered to a certain patient population. In other instances, this method would slow the dissemination of clinical knowledge regarding new treatments.
"A solution is needed for automating the review of patient records for a given healthcare entity to identify instances where certain acquired clinical knowledge has relevance to providing patient care."
In addition to the background information obtained for this patent, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "A system and associated methods of the present invention analyze records of a patient population based on the receipt of a piece of clinical knowledge. In one aspect of the invention, a method in a computer system of queuing tasks is provided. These tasks affect a portion of a patient population of a healthcare entity. According to the method, executable code is generated and distributed to the healthcare entity, the code being based on the piece of clinical knowledge. Taking into account certain rules of the healthcare entity, the method then involves the steps of selectively accessing a set of records of the patient population and analyzing such records by the executable code to register matches of the piece of clinical knowledge with data contained in the set of records. With the results of the matching process, a task list may be generated that affects a select group of the set of records where matching occurred.
"Another aspect of the present invention includes a method in a computer system for presenting a healthcare entity with an option to automatically analyze a set of records of the healthcare entity's patient population, wherein the analysis relates to a piece of clinical knowledge. According to the method, a publication associated with the piece of clinical knowledge is received and executable code is generated based on the publication. This executable code is configured to perform an analysis within the set of records. A link to the executable code may then be distributed and presented to the healthcare entity. Acceptance of the link causes the executable code to be distributed and the set of patient records to be analyzed to thereby register matches of the piece of clinical knowledge with data contained in the set of records.
"Provided in another aspect of the present invention is a method in a computer system for automatically implementing an analysis of a set of records of the patient population of the healthcare entity, wherein the analysis relates to a piece of clinical knowledge. According to the method, a healthcare entity first receives executable code incorporating the piece of clinical knowledge. The code is configured to perform an analysis within the set of records. The set of records may then be accessed and analyzed by running the executable code. Analyzing of the records includes registering matches of the piece of clinical knowledge with data contained in the set of records.
"In yet another aspect of the present invention, a method is provided for analyzing a set of records of a patient population of a healthcare entity with respect to a piece of clinical knowledge. According to the method, executable code is first generated based on the piece of clinical knowledge. The healthcare entity then determines the extent to which the clinical knowledge has relevance to the patient population, and based on this relevance determination, distributes at least a portion of the executable code to the healthcare entity. The set of records may then be accessed and analyzed by running the executable code. Analyzing the records includes registering matches of the piece of clinical knowledge with data contained in the set of records. Subsequently, system activity may be initiated based on the particular matches generated."
URL and more information on this patent, see: Hanf, Thomas; Finn, Christopher. System and Methods for Distributed Analysis of Patient Records. U.S. Patent Number 8799006, filed
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