Leveraging electronic health records to support chronic disease management: the need for temporal data views

Lipika Samal, Adam Wright, Bang Wong, Jeffrey Linder, David Bates


Background The ageing population worldwide is increasingly acquiring multiple chronic diseases. The complex management of chronic diseases could be improved with electronic health records (EHRs) tailored to chronic disease care, but most EHRs in use today do not adequately support longitudinal data management. A key aspect of chronic disease management is that it takes place over long periods, but the way that most EHRs display longitudinal data makes it difficult to trend changes over time and slows providers as they review each patient's unique course.
Methods We present five clinical scenarios illustrating longitudinal data needs in complex chronic disease management. These scenarios may function as example cases for software development.
Outputs For each scenario, we describe and illustrate improvements in temporal data views. Two potential solutions are visualisation for numerical data and disease-oriented text summaries for non-numerical data.
Conclusions We believe that development and widespread implementation of improved temporal data views in EHRs will improve the efficiency and quality of chronic disease management in primary care.


clinical documentation; electronic medical record; human factors; primary care; patient-centred medical home

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14236/jhi.v19i2.797


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