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Experts recommend CDS platforms to help clinicians make informed therapy decisions

Shardul Nautiyal, Mumbai
Saturday, January 9, 2021, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Experts have recommended robust Clinical Decision Support (CDS) platforms to evaluate the quality of clinical evidence to help clinicians make informed therapy decisions. It will avoid medical errors and adverse events during treatment, besides being a cost-effective tool.

Besides this, technology is revolutionizing how patients access medical care. This is where the role of digital platforms such as CDS plays a crucial role as they aid to improve patient outcomes by providing doctors the latest information in a real-time basis.

CDS systems are developed by experienced experts using published guidelines and protocols in accordance with international standards.

This according to them is very relevant as National Digital Health Blueprint (NDHB) has laid emphasis on leveraging digital technologies for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare delivery.

According to Dr Sree Bhushan Raju, professor and head of Department of Nephrology, Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS), Hyderabad, “The Covid-19 pandemic has leveraged a decade-old healthcare digital transformation in India. From artificial intelligence (AI), virtual and augmented reality, healthcare trackers, wearable, and sensors to CDS, we are certainly heading towards what can well be called a digital healthcare ecosystem. Today, healthcare technologies are not only evolving at a fast pace but also being updated based on the increasing and changing disease profiles.”

“A paradigm shift has happened from the silos systems to a more comprehensive and holistic health eco-system. The extensive deployment of digital technologies is the most promising approach adopted by the National Health Policy to achieve this goal. CDS platforms are designed to make it easy for the clinicians to find the information they need when they need it,” he further explained.

Experts recommend the CDS platform at the point of care to provide answers based on clinicians’ needs by highlighting key evaluation criteria and even better, evaluate the quality of the clinical evidence.

A good CDS platform could also highlight specific new recommendations that may potentially change usual clinical practice, especially in rare or difficult cases from computerized alerts, reminders to patients and doctors to diagnostic support and relevant reference information; they have everything accessible from one platform.

Dr Raju explains, “Every minute is critical when a patient visits a doctor with a disease that requires immediate medical intervention. A CDS system that can be accessed through mobile applications that have accurate information about the correct treatment options provides a higher level of accessibility, saving the doctor’s time and efforts. By providing clinical decision support that is evidence-based, clinicians have access to best medical practices, and can safely eliminate practices that are proven to be ineffective.”

This differs from traditional journals in that a good CDS platform provides answers the clinicians need, at the point of care, by highlighting key evaluation criteria and evaluate the quality of the clinical evidence.

As the rising Covid-19 cases have overwhelmed healthcare systems worldwide, people are moving towards virtual modes of seeking treatment. From diagnosis to prognosis, digital technologies are helping in procuring personalized lines of treatment for patients like never before. Even when healthcare services will resume after Covid-19, the ways patients interact with healthcare providers are bound to change dramatically.

Even the most experienced clinicians and care teams need support systems to keep up with newer and advanced standards of care. A CDS system with evidence-based content that is robust enough to answer most of their questions at the point of care enhances the quality of care, improving health outcomes. Today, hospitals are integrating healthcare technologies such as CDS tools that provide accurate and efficient clinical results.

“The future of healthcare entails technologies that combine data on a patient’s medical history, insurance coverage, real-time health and can support doctors in decision-making thus improving patient outcomes,” Dr Raju concludes.


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