The Office of Mental Health Services (OMHS) has requested the development of clinical reminder dialog templates that will be used for Evidence Based Therapy (EBT) protocols for the treatment of mental health conditions including, but not limited to, depression and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). They are requesting the distribution of these templates in order to nationalize the data captured and to monitor the effectiveness of the therapies. There have been no new functionalities created nor are there any software or hardware modifications required of VistA or CPRS. These dialog templates will utilize health factors for tracking a number of elements associated with the therapy protocols.
Use of these national reminder dialog templates will facilitate requests in support of the ‘Improve Veterans Mental Health (IVMH)’ major initiative, which is part of the 16 major initiatives identified by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) as the highest priority for the department.
While the primary purpose of clinical reminders has been to remind clinicians to complete specific clinical tasks for individual patients at the point of care, field staff have found a variety of other uses for this program, such as:
(1) Reminder reports have been used to identify patients for whom a specific task has not been completed allowing staff to follow-up on an individualized basis.
(2) Reminders have been used to assist in the completion of administrative tasks such as enrollment of a patient in Primary Care Management Module.
(3) Clinical Reminder software allows documentation of care received outside VHA to be recorded in a format that is readily located in CPRS, through the use of electronic data components that exist in Patient Care Encounter software such as health factors, education topics, exams, and treatments.
(4) Use of these electronic data components allows identification of patients with specific clinical characteristics that are not readily captured by other components of the record. For example, health factors used to identify patients who served in a particular conflict or who are in different stages of a disease can contribute to improved care for special populations, as well as assisting in research efforts.
(5) The ability of the software to generate reports provides a powerful tool for measuring performance without the need for individual chart review.
(6) Performance measurement using clinical reminder reports can include the entire population of a medical center, clinic, or primary care team, without relying on sampling, and can include information about care received outside VHA.
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